Friday, February 26, 2010

The Top 5 Worst Habits of Mailing Cards

I’ll be discussing some of the ways that I’ve seen cards packaged the wrong way. If you find yourself in one of these categories, never fear, My next scheduled post will include potential ways to ship your cards to ensure their safe arrival every time.

Top 5 Worst Habits of Mailing Cards

1. The “White Envelope” – Even though the government seems like a slow bureaucratic behemoth, the mail  service has adapted to the mechanized world. The post office assumes that all white envelopes: a) contain paper and b) are flexible. This means that they can be passed through machines at high speed via rollers and past computer scanners to “read” addresses and postal codes or sorted by size and shape. While placing a card in a top loader does lend it some strength, against the crushing power of a sorting machine, say hello to unsightly creases and a ruined card. Yes, some cards get through unscathed, but a significant amount end up ruined.

2. The “Creative Toploader” – This goes out mostly to people who have over large cards. You can find top loaders for 5x7 and other strange sized, but they get rather flimsy at that size. Often, most people can't by such materials easily or cheaply. Inevitably, the trader resorts to using an office folder or a plastic film like saran wrap. This isn’t enough . The best solution I ever saw was balsa wood, but a stiff cardboard is usually enough..

3. The “Tape Salesman” – Whoever sends these cards must be putting the tape salesman’s child through college or be the tape company spokesperson. If it takes you more than 10 seconds to tape up your trade cards, you’re used too much tape! Too much tape is an issue for the person who receives the cards as well. They are trying their best not to ruin their cards, but when you have to bring in the kitchen paring knife to slice out your cards, the sweat begins to form and one day a mistake will cost you a beauty. Finally, if you’re packaged your cards in top loaders and a team bag securely enough, no tape is necessary on the inside and only a small piece needs to be used on the outside!

4. The “Illegal Entry” – This is one of those ‘victimless’ crimes where you can negotiate with your trader what’s declared on the customs forms in order to avoid paying taxes. If you knowing enter false information in a customs form you are defrauding the government! This means you can’t put a ‘support the troops’ sticker anywhere on your car.

5. The “Internal Taper” – I have to admit that I’m struggling to find #5, but I finally settled on this one. I find that I'm becoming the victim of this more frequently. People place tape on the inside of their bubble mailers are probably worried about their card falling out of the package for some reason. However, tape can get very sticky during transit and be hard to remove when it finally reaches its destination. At best it stops the card from shaking about. At worst, it makes it a pain for the person receiving the card to take it out of the envelope without damaging it. Just imagine if the card had to be inspected by customs? Do you think that a customs agent will be that gentle in trying to get something out of an envelope?


  1. there's a special place in hell for people who put tape directly onto top loaders.

  2. Here, here, said the blind man to the masses of people that are overly scotch tape happy. Word of advice...if you must tape, use Blue Painters Tape. It doesn't leave residue, is secure, yet easily removable.

  3. I agree totally about tape, both on top loaders and taping to the envelope. Find another way!