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Me: 0 Canaduh Post: 986,000

I finally went to the post office and was informed, by the barely-English-speaking postal workers, that there is no way to send a self-addressed stamped envelope to the USA other than postal reply coupons. "When you send things to the states," quoth she, "you use Canadian stamps, and when they send it to us, they use American stamps." I tried to explain what I meant a few more times, but eventually went away annoyed.

Because, because, NO! That's not right! When you send letters to the states, you use U.S. stamps, and when they send letters to Canada, I assume they use Canadian stamps, or I could be wrong? I'm pretty sure about the first part, because the last time I sent a letter to the U.S. I definitely had to buy American stamps. Or have they changed it? Am I crazy? I am very frustrated, because many of the agents to whom I am sending things have notes on their pages saying: "Do not send us postal reply coupons. The post office will only take ten at a time and we don't have the resources to use them. There are only so many go-fers in the world."

And now I am flailing in anger and despair, and seriously considering calling Canada Post and asking them directly. I'm going to complain about the Belmont post office anyway, because their carriers habitually don't deliver the "your package has arrived!" tags until one or two days after the tracking shows packages have arrived, and then they throw up their hands and say there is nothing they can do.


Now I'm going to go eat noodles and drown my sorrows in Atlantis fic. And damnit, I still need to come up with a thirty-minute self-contained story concept to pitch in Thursday's screenwriting class. (I have NO IDEAS. Or possibly it is that my brain has been SUCKED INTO ATLANTIS and there is no room for other ideas to surface. Help.)

P.S. It is fucking COLD and ridiculously windy outside. It's supposed to snow tonight and if it doesn't, I'm actually going to be annoyed. My ears still hurt from the walk home. It's like brain freeze without the sugary payoff. :(


( 14 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 15th, 2008 02:41 am (UTC)
hmmm i never thought about that kind of stamp quandry before.

i think that when you send mail to the us/elsewhere, you use canadian international stamps...like still canadian stamps but worth more to send stuff further?

maybe? i could be wrong.
Jan. 15th, 2008 02:53 am (UTC)
See, that's what I thought, because the last time I sent a letter to the States I had to buy a special U.S./Canada International stamp, I remember. It definitely had "USA" on it somewhere. But the girl at the counter stared at me like I was crazy.

Jan. 15th, 2008 03:21 am (UTC)
When I was applying to grad school, I had to get letters of recommendation from a professor of mine who was in New Zealand at the time, and I needed some self-adressed stamp envelopes. In order to do this, the only way I could do it quickly, was to use international reply coupons as per the Canada Post website. The other alternative was getting someone I knew in New Zealand to mail me some stamps, and that would have taken waaaay too long.

Which doesn't help you, I know, but it was the only way I found after searching high and low for information on international SASE. :3

PS -- looking at mail Americans have sent to me, they definitely use American stamps to send to Canada. :/
Jan. 15th, 2008 04:04 am (UTC)
Jan. 15th, 2008 04:26 am (UTC)
Actually, no, postal folks are right. The stamps you use are the ones from your own country, not from the other's. If I were to send anything from the US, regardless of where to, it's US stamps I use. If I'm in M'sia, it's M'sian stamps, etc. That's the way it's always been, and I've been sending letters to other countries since I was a kid. 'Cause if you think about it, Country A is not going to know how much Country B's stamps translates to, and can't be bothered; you go by your own country's stamps.

Which, yes, does make it particularly sucky for international reply coupons, I imagine.

I can send you some US stamps if you want. BUT! Oh, you have to watch what this is actually for. Is your package/letter to be sent back from the US going to weigh more than 13 ounces? Because USPS, always making terribly inefficient rules in the first place, had another rule in effect some months ago, in which no mail weighing above 13 ounces can simply have stamps and be put into a mailbox. No, you have to bring the bloody thing to a post office instead. Doesn't matter if it's just domestic, stamps still aren't allowed because of that weight limit. "For security reasons." Which basically translates to "we're becoming more inefficient just for the fun of it."

And I think if the mail piece is for international and above 16 ounces (1 pound), it's not allowed to be put in the mailbox in general. This is regardless of whether it uses regular stamps or has business metered stamps (which is usually exempt from most silly rules, such as the 13 ounces thing).

It's really insane, I can tell you that. And people wonder why the act of letter-writing is so little practiced nowadays.

Jan. 15th, 2008 04:50 am (UTC)
Hmm. The stamps we use to send letters to the States do say U.S.A. on them, but further research reveals that they are "U.S. International" and then there is a whole other host of stamps for "other International," and isn't that just... special.

I'm just looking for return postage for a regular letter, 1-2 sheets of paper in a typical envelope. USPS website says 69 cents USD, but I can't find anywhere to order the stamps in large numbers, if they come in actual stamp form at all? *muttergrumblemutter*

Edited at 2008-01-15 05:00 am (UTC)
Jan. 15th, 2008 03:15 pm (UTC)
Oh, I can send you the stamps easily. If you want large numbers, they come in sheets of 20 a page, or a roll of a 100. I was planning to get around to the post eventually to send stuff to my folks. How many do you need?

Jan. 19th, 2008 03:06 am (UTC)
Ooh yes please! How much will a hundred run me? :)
Jan. 19th, 2008 03:59 pm (UTC)
It'll just be lightweight return letters, right? That'll be 69 cents a piece, x 100 = $69 USD. Let me know if that works and I'll send 'em over!
Jan. 21st, 2008 09:07 pm (UTC)
That's great! Um, can I Paypal you? (Or just hand you a was of cash when you get here, maybe? ^.^)
Jan. 22nd, 2008 03:59 pm (UTC)
(*grins*) That's fine, no prob. I'll send the stamps right over!
Jan. 15th, 2008 08:46 am (UTC)
There is no such thing as a "Canada stamp". We use international stamps for EVERYTHING which isn't in the US. So you'd need an american international stamp, for it to work.
Jan. 15th, 2008 03:07 pm (UTC)
Yeah, it's looking like Canada Post is just wacky that way. o.O
Jan. 15th, 2008 08:04 pm (UTC)
Just to confirm that you use your own nation's stamps when mailing letters internationally. Apparently there's some sort of treaty or agreement by which payment into each other's postal systems is performed to cover the costs.
( 14 comments — Leave a comment )


Chandri MacLeod

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