Many people may be under the impression that stamp collecting or philately is an expensive hobby. It can be expensive if you’re into rare and famous stamps which are mostly acquired through auction houses. But if you’re collecting stamps for the beauty of the stamps, this hobby need not cost you much.
There are six common inexpensive ways you can start stamp collecting.
If you have friends and relatives who occasionally write to you, tell them to use commemorative stamps on their envelopes. In these days of emails and video chatting, writing letters may not be an activity preferred by some people.
In that case ask your friends to at least send you a postcard once a month using a commemorative stamp on the postcard. Tell them you’re starting a stamp collection and they would probably be eager to help you start with your stamp collection.
Be sure to emphasize to your friends and relatives to use commemorative stamps as these are limited edition stamps which are of much more value to collectors than the usual stamps. Tell them to request for these stamps at the post office.
When you want information to be sent to you by some businesses, you’re required to include a self-addressed, stamped envelope. Be sure to use a commemorative stamp on the envelope. You’ll get back the stamp when the businesses send you the information which you’ve requested.
Ask your working parents, siblings, neighbors and friends to save the envelopes that their companies receive. Some companies receive a great amount of mails from all over the country and even from overseas. You’ll get a wide range of different stamps for your collection.
Some people save their old letters from way back when emails are not yet popular. Ask your parents or grandparents if they have these letters. Leave the stamp intact on the envelope. Tear off the corner of the envelope where the stamp is. Make sure that the perforations are intact. Any damage on the stamp would render it valueless.
You can go online or ask around your neighborhood to look for other stamp collectors. You can suggest to them to swap stamps if they have duplicates. You may even suggest buying some of their duplicates if you don’t have stamps that the other collector wants. Buying from a fellow philatelist would be far cheaper than if you were to buy them from the store.
Look for penpals from all over the world. Tell them that you’re a stamp collector and would appreciate it if they write to you using their country’s commemorative stamps. Most people would oblige if you sincerely ask for their help in expanding your stamp collection.
Join stamp clubs in your neighborhood and trade stamps with the members. If your neighborhood doesn’t have a stamp club, you can always start one. It only takes three to five people for you to start a viable stamp club. You can then exchange ideas on how to get stamps inexpensively and even share your experiences in stamp collecting.