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General Philatelic/Gen. Discussion : Universal Postal Union

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Bujutsu
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06 Jan 2019
03:16:27pm
Hi Everyone
Just moments ago, I was told by a friend of mine that the Universal Postal Union is considering some huge changes.
I guess you can call this a ‘gripe’ posting, so, please excuse me if I sound frustrated.
In the future, the UPU is urging all of it’s members to consider stamp trades as parcels or packages and will be charging the rates accordingly. Now, what gets me is that all of the different postal entities issue stamps to ‘promote the hobby’. Then, the UPU comes around with these proposed new changes. I think it is a simple case of the left hand not knowing what the right hand is doing.
If a grandmother is sent a picture of her grandchildren, it will handled as a package and charged according. And then they wonder why they are losing revenue. Well, to me anyway, it is not rocket science to figure out that problem.
I am sending this posting because it will affect forums such as ours and others like it. I trade with a few of the members in here and other forums and I am sure a lot of people will be upset by these proposals.
I have heard that a lot of dealers are really upset too about this, and, rightly so.
Have any of the other members heard anything about this as well?

All the best.

Chimo

Bujutsu

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Cactusjack
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06 Jan 2019
04:50:25pm

Approvals
re: Universal Postal Union

Unfortunately the UPU is a political entity over which we the people have no control. I read in the paper that the US and China are the worlds 2 largest economies. Yet the UPU considers China a "developing nation" so China pays a lot less for moving the mail than does the US, Canada and most of Europe. So the parcels or packages for stamps is not the only "off base" decision for the UPU.

Jim

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Webpaper
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06 Jan 2019
05:40:04pm
re: Universal Postal Union

I believe that our rates for international mail from the US skyrocketed about a year ago - they are not "considering it" - it is here and has been here. Several threads on this forum and all the other stamp forums, and have been for the last several months.

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ikeyPikey
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06 Jan 2019
10:52:16pm
re: Universal Postal Union

.

Forbes: As U.S. Postage Rates Continue To Rise The USPS Gives The Chinese A 'Free Ride'

Explains it well.

Cheers,

/s/ ikeyPikey

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michael78651
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SOR Auctioneer
07 Jan 2019
12:28:06am
re: Universal Postal Union

This has been continuously discussed on this site and on other sites for over a year now. Several articles have appeared in Linn's about it, including the China Post matter, during the past year as well.

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scb
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Collecting the world 1840 to date - one stamp at a time!
07 Jan 2019
05:36:07am
re: Universal Postal Union

Bujutsu - I've written about this time and again at my website. The key thing to understand that we are now in middle of transition phase. By start of 2021 there should be a world without 'parcels' or 'letters', as according to UPU they will be replaced by 'postal items requiring custom clearance' and 'postal items NOT requiring customs clearance'. Parcel or letter will not matter in future, it will be just the medium. It will be all about customs or not (and stamps, such as all collectibles are and have always been subject for it).

While all the 192 UPU countries try to align their services to this new thinking, things will be chaotic on overlapping parts. Some countries are and will be far ahead of others. For example 'letter rate item with customs clearance' does not exist (yet) simply because it would create tons of issues with those stuck with the old (especially as there's no automation machinery/system for dealing with electronic customs clearance of such items). This is a REALLY BIG SHIP to turn, and implementing changes will take not days, weeks, months but years.

But over time I'm sure this (as well as many more) issues that are currently causing so much fraction will be fixed. Just give it time. By 2021 things should be better (I hope).

-k-

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cdj1122
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Silence in the face of adversity is complicity.
07 Jan 2019
09:55:16am
re: Universal Postal Union

There is a cure that could be implemented.
If the US, UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand
and a few Western European nations, which
constitute probable 75% or more of the world's
mail volume decided to meet and consider
withdrawing from the UPU, the situation might
be remedied quite quickly
After all we seem to have been able to withdraw
from, or discussed withdrawing from, NAFTA, the
Clean Air treaty, TPP, the WTO.
the G-7, Nato and Seato. The UN Commission on
Human Rights and the Iran Deal, that I can recall,
why not the UPU ?
That would threaten the economic underpinnings
of the UPU in a New York minute.
I think I could live quite happily with never
getting mail fron Saudi Arabia or Mali and others.

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cougar
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07 Jan 2019
10:18:25am

Approvals
re: Universal Postal Union

"I think I could live quite happily with never
getting mail fron Saudi Arabia or Mali and others."

Not everyone collects USA and UK only. Those rare to find countries will become non-existent for us.

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Bujutsu
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07 Jan 2019
12:26:59pm
re: Universal Postal Union

Thank you all for your input. I can understand this situation a little better.

Chimo

Bujutsu

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cdj1122
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Silence in the face of adversity is complicity.
07 Jan 2019
03:56:59pm
re: Universal Postal Union

" ..." ... Those rare to find countries
will become non-existent for us. ..." ..."


You are so right. And we all will have some
favorite country that we will never finish

Who would care to spend $10.00 to send a
payment and a second $10.00 to pay for
shipping to get $10,00 worth of Sharjah.
However it could be a boon to dealers.
Let's say you want Eire, the best source
here would be a dealer who has the money
to make a bulk purchase for resale.
A large parcel allows the customs and
shipping charge to be distributed over
a large number of stamps, and since
Eire stamps would be more difficult to
acquire the dealer can charge a bit more
per unit to recoup his shipping expenses..

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michael78651
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SOR Auctioneer
07 Jan 2019
04:29:37pm
re: Universal Postal Union

You would be surprised how many buyers outside the US pay $20 to have a 15 cent stamp mailed to them. The postal clerks, who see it on the customs form are astounded.

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Brechinite
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Neddie Seagoon from The Telegoons
07 Jan 2019
06:42:47pm

Auctions - Approvals
re: Universal Postal Union

Quote:

"You would be surprised how many buyers outside the US pay $20 to have a 15 cent stamp mailed to them. The postal clerks, who see it on the customs form are astounded."



Jings!...Crivvens!...Help Ma Boab!

Us Scots thought we were the only ones that had that idea!

You americans are devilishly fiendish!


Quote:

"Those rare to find countries will become non-existent for us."



Never mind the rare countries, most countries use these terrible labels.

You seldom see recent stamps on your own domestic post.

If you want to keep up to date with any country you will only be able to buy from that countries philatelic bureau and it will cost you in shipping charges.

For older stamps there will still be plenty floating around "the system" in your own countries.

Instead of paying 10% of catalogue prices, buyers will end up paying 70-80% of catalogue with a minimum order level of $30.00 plus shipping. That's how you kill off a hobby for the ordinary citizen!





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ikeyPikey
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07 Jan 2019
08:54:44pm
re: Universal Postal Union

Quote:

"If you want to keep up to date with any country you will only be able to buy from that countries philatelic bureau and it will cost you in shipping charges."



Existing Alternative? The new issues agencies, with whom I have had zero experience:

IGPC is a US-based agency selling new issues from more than 70 postal authorities

Interpost is a US-based agency selling new issues from more than one dozen postal authorities

Stamperija is an EU-based agency ... my guess is that EU rules (no customs boundaries between member countries) will allow their EU end-users to painlessly finesse the new UPU rules

Philatelic agencies of the more enterprising small countries might ship their customers' collected orders as cargo to a destination country, and then enter them into the local mail stream as intra-national shipments.

The inconvenience to collectors will vary by where they are located, and what they collect.

Cheers,

/s/ ikeyPikey
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DaveSheridan
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www.globalphilately.com
07 Jan 2019
09:26:41pm
re: Universal Postal Union

WOPA is an agency I have used and recommend, for 40 postal administrations

https://www.wopa-plus.com/en/stamps/index/

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pigdoc
08 Jan 2019
01:19:57pm
re: Universal Postal Union

I used to be a subscriber with the Denmark, Norway, and Sweden postal agencies, with a standing order of a yearset each year. Some years ago, I cancelled them all as it just got to be too expensive - WAY more than $100 per year.

But, each of these agencies had very charming benefits for their subscribers. For Sweden, you'd get a very nice, limited edition, engraved plate proof of one of their current issues. For Denmark, it was often a paper Christmas ornament to assemble. Norway always ran a most popular stamp contest, where you voted for your guess of which among the year's stamps would be voted most popular stamp. An all-expenses paid vacation (in Norway, of course) was the Grand Prize awarded to the lucky winner, drawn from those contestants who had correctly picked the most popular stamp. I usually picked the most popular stamp (the one with the flag on it), but never won the drawing...I presumed that Norway Post conspired to only allow a domestic winner.

I suppose these kinds of perks would NOT be part of a what you'd get from a sales agency...

Oh well...

I'll share some of those Swedish plate proofs, after I get them out of storage.
-Paul

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Dakota
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08 Jan 2019
09:12:27pm

Auctions
re: Universal Postal Union

I agree with Dave. I have purchased through WOPA many times with no problems.

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larsdog
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APS #220693 ATA#57179
08 Jan 2019
10:22:21pm
re: Universal Postal Union

Quote:

"There is a cure that could be implemented.
If the US, UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand
and a few Western European nations, which
constitute probable 75% or more of the world's
mail volume decided to meet and consider
withdrawing from the UPU, the situation might
be remedied quite quickly"



OK, possible, but seems to be a bit dramatic...

Quote:

"After all we seem to have been able to withdraw
from, or discussed withdrawing from, NAFTA, the
Clean Air treaty, TPP, the WTO.
the G-7, Nato and Seato. The UN Commission on
Human Rights and the Iran Deal, that I can recall,
why not the UPU ?"



We??? You started off with "US, UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand
and a few Western European nations"

How many of the above, other than the US, withdrew from NAFTA? Canada?
How many of the above, other than the US, are trashing NATO or the Iran Deal?

The US stands alone right now in these respects.
Much to the delight of our foes.
But not forever.
Democracy and Truth with prevail.
It may take more time than most of us wish it to, but it WILL happen. Eventually. And certainly.

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amsd
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Editor, Seal News; contributor, JuicyHeads
09 Jan 2019
08:11:33am

Auctions
re: Universal Postal Union

returning to the UPU, I hope it institutes some changes, among them how they classify emerging vs emerged countries and the rates that correspond to the category.

I'd hate to lose the framework that has allowed for useful mail function for most of a century and a half.

For those of you who ship stuff overseas with some regularity, perhaps you could post rate charts to several countries from the US and from a few others, comparing the country of origin's postal service with UPS, FedX, and DHL. It might go a long way towards seeing what the future would like without the UPU.


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Bujutsu
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09 Jan 2019
11:31:19am
re: Universal Postal Union

Michael78651 makes a good point
I have heard this on several occasions regarding people willing to pay X number of dollars for a 25 cents stamp. I guess if they want it bad enough, they are more than willing to pay.
I guess there is hope afterall? Big Grin

Chimo

Bujutsu

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51Studebaker
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Dialysis, damned if you do...dead if you don't
09 Jan 2019
12:03:26pm
re: Universal Postal Union

In my opinion, this represents good vision by the postal systems. Obviously postal systems are transitioning to purely parcel services; first class mail volume has plummeted in recent years. For USPS, First Class volume hit a 45 year low in 2017 while setting all kinds of new records for parcel volume.

Without question the internet is the next generation postal system. (What does a postal system do? It facilitates communication between humans.) Clearly sending an email is far less costly, far more convenient, and exponentially faster. The handwriting for this transition has been on the wall for over a decade. Postal systems do not exist for stamp collectors, no one should expect a postal system to operate at a large loss. Phasing out First Class mail is economically the sensible thing to do whether or not we (as stamp collectors) like it or not.

In the future will people still need to occasionally send paper through the mail? Probably. But a postal system has no issues with treating these infrequent mailings as a parcel. Common sense dictates trimming the ‘dead wood’ services like First Class and the UPC knows this.
Don

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sheepshanks
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09 Jan 2019
12:55:23pm

Approvals
re: Universal Postal Union

Quote:

"Without question the internet is the next generation postal system"



I quite agree Don, we seem to have been going down this route for a number of years.
So, is the next logical step to actually purchase stamps from dealers etc. but have an image uploaded to your cloud account where you can copy and paste into your virtual album. This would also solve the problem of purchase of albums, as well as the conundrum of mounting.
The original stamp will never leave the dealer or seller so does not risk getting lost in a postal system. Though this could lead to the unscrupulous sale of the same stamp to other purchasers.
Just a thought.
Off now to copy a load of images off the internet to create my new fabulous collection of rare and priceless stamps.
Only kidding.
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51Studebaker
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Dialysis, damned if you do...dead if you don't
09 Jan 2019
03:51:35pm
re: Universal Postal Union

sheepshanks,

Big Grin Big Grin
I am unsure that trying to apply existing stamp collecting perspectives can be applied to this paradigm shift.

Instead the future postal history collectables will be things like vintage computers, vintage original software, and possibly even internet domain names. FYI, target buying and saving ‘mint’ items that have their original boxes and documentation! One day your great grandkids will thank you…and who knows, perhaps it will be a pathway to items like stamps!
Don

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sheepshanks
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09 Jan 2019
04:08:52pm

Approvals
re: Universal Postal Union

Don, guess I'll hang onto my W95 setup then, just wish I still had the ZX81. Mind you one of the original Apples would be nice.

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BenFranklin1902
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Tom in Exton, PA
10 Jan 2019
07:14:55pm
re: Universal Postal Union

Some good news, that special Small Packet rate from China that has flooded eBay with Chinese sellers selling questionable products is getting more expensive.

https://www.ecommercebytes.com/C/blog/blog.pl?/pl/2019/1/1547085738.html

Right now Chinese sellers pay less postage to the USA than our own domestic rates! It's turned to unfair competition to US online sellers. And questionable products and business practices!

I bought 5 iPhone charging cords for less than $10 including postage. Upon receiving them, only half of them actually worked. I contacted the seller and the response was "return them for a refund", knowing it would cost me a lot more than my investment just for that postage. The only good part is that the wires inside are the right size to use for detailing model cars.

Once US buyers stopped buying from Chinese sellers, they'd list as US domestic sellers. I ordered windshield washer nozzles for my car from a seller in New Jersey. The package came from China. The units were slightly different in size than the originals and were difficult to make work.

So this is a huge plus!

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Brechinite
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Neddie Seagoon from The Telegoons
11 Jan 2019
08:57:58am

Auctions - Approvals
re: Universal Postal Union

Listing as U.K. Sellers when they are not.

YYYUUUPPP!

You have to be careful. It happens here in the UK as well.

Devilly fiendish these Chinese, Germans, Dutch and Swiss.

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