Stamps were invented simply as a means to signify that the poster has paid the necessary amount to register, insure, and move your letter from one location to another. However, despite such a limited and practical purpose, postage stamps have evolved over time and have managed to become a collector’s item, sometimes fetching millions of dollars in the process.
Consequently, the concept of commemorative stamps began to come about with governments around the world publishing stamps to mark a specific event or celebrate an anniversary of one thing or another.
Traditionally, one would go to their local post office to check on the latest additions to stamps and buy their favorite one there and then. However, more and more people prefer to buy stamps online and understandably so. As the demand for stamp collectors grows, so does the rise of occurrences of stocks running out fast at local post offices. To continue meeting this demand, independent stamp vendors are setting up online marketplaces for stamps and government post departments are even selling stamps online, including the US Postal Service!
However, one needs to be careful and take a number of considerations into account before they purchase their stamps online. Today we’ll be discussing these different factors. So without further ado, let’s go!
KNOW WHAT YOU WANT
You’ll first need to figure out what you’re looking for in a stamp before you decide to buy it online. If you’re looking to by an outdated stamp that’s clean and crisp, then you’ll have difficulty in finding it. Reason being that, with an outdated stamp, the chances of finding one without the cancellation mark are slim at best. Even if you do manage to find a vendor who can sell you one, you need to be careful as the stamp could be fake and you’ll be out of money.
Also getting an outdated stamp that is clean will be a lot more expensive than buying a used stamp. Therefore, it would be better if you’re clear on your standards and also compromise on them to ensure you can find what you want.
DON’T TRUST PRIVATE FORUMS
You need to avoid internet forums at all costs as these are breeding grounds for scam artists and frauds. Using a website that has verified users will be a lot safer and a registered account offers an added element of verification by letting you check on past purchases and sales.
However, you still need to exercise some caution. Only trust listings that have authentic pictures and not stock images. Also, make sure you check all the information on the listing to make sure it is the correct stamp and not someone just scamming you again. Also, make sure you are aware of the terms and conditions of the site so that you can ensure your rights are protected at all times.
DON’T BE IMPULSIVE
You can’t be impulsive with your purchase when it comes to stamps. As exciting as it is to see a stamp you’ve been searching for years, you need to contain that excitement and take a careful approach regardless. Look at the price of the stamp and check for shipping rates, as you could end up paying a lot more in shipping itself than the actual cost of the stamp. So stay calm throughout the process and double-check everything!