Ruined postcards from USA

Old Nov 21st, 2000, 02:34 AM
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Ruined postcards from USA

I know this is not related to European travelling, but as an European (a Finn) I would like get an answer from Americans to a question thatīs been bothering me a while. And there seem to be most active Americans on this thread..

So, why does the American post office add an extra piece of white paper to the picture side of the postcards which are sent from there??? I know there is some code on the area, but why does it have to ruin the beautiful and hard chosen pictures... This has happened for example to the cards sent from Florida and Arizona, so it doesnīt seem to be regional.

I myself want my cards WITHOUT the paper strip!!
Old Nov 21st, 2000, 04:11 AM
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Hi Katja
I am an American and sometimes that
white strip is put on the correspondence side of the card, thereby wiping out the bottom couple of lines of writing.
I don't know why it's necessary though.
Old Nov 21st, 2000, 04:16 AM
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The U.S. Post Office system, the absolute best postal system in the world, is fully computerized. When a letter is drop from the mailperson to the processing center, a scanner reads the destination ZIP code and translates into a bar code, which is printed typically under the ZIP code. From then on the document is handle and routed by machines following the bar code reading. The only drawback is that this bar code works optimally when printed with no other symbols interference, hence the added bar code on a standard white strip for postcards, which typically don't allow a lot of blank space for the bar code stamp.
Old Nov 21st, 2000, 04:41 AM
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Katja: I have found that that white piece of tape comes off very easily, leaving no mark, if you remove it slowly.
Old Nov 21st, 2000, 05:13 AM
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The strip may come off the picture side of the postcard easily because that side tends to be glossy
I have tried to get it off the message side, each time it takes the writing away with it.
Engineer, I have no idea whether the US postal system is the best in the world or not, but if so, I shudder to think of the rest of the systems. It's not called snail mail with affection.
Old Nov 21st, 2000, 05:55 AM
Beth Anderson
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Hi Katja,

I also have found that the strip comes off pretty easily. If it is the glossy side - it peels right off. I have not seen it on the 'writing' side though...

Old Nov 21st, 2000, 09:49 AM
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I've had the white strip on the writing side and that doesn't come off as easily as on the glossy side. I don't know what the solution would be for this. Perhaps sending the postcard in an envelope, but I guess that would defeat the purpose of having it stamped in the country or city where you are vacationing. Any ideas people?
Old Nov 21st, 2000, 10:37 AM
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I'll tell you what is a worse problem. Many places now sell oversized post cards, but no one tells the poor unsuspecting foreign traveler that the usual post card stamp isn't sufficient to send it. If he goes to the post office to send it, fine, they will put the right postage on the card, but many tourists will simply ask for post card stamps and put them on. Since postcards have no return address, these cards never make it to their destination.
Old Nov 21st, 2000, 10:56 AM
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I didn't realize that the USPS added the strip, but 80% of the postcards I send from Europe have that same white strip on one side or the other of my postcards.
Old Nov 21st, 2000, 01:19 PM
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I have learned to not write my postcard to the very bottom of the card. And the ones I do get I have been able to peel off without any problems. My biggest concerns have always been "did they get to my friends and family?" One didn't make it to my friend from the Rhineland in Germany!
Old Nov 21st, 2000, 06:51 PM
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I've not had a problem removing the strip as yet. Patrick, I sent the oversized postcards from Paris w/o extra postage and they all arrived in the US. I wonder if just some countries require the extra postage.

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