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How to buy discounted postage, safely

Guest blog from David Waldie at PTS Member, Philatelink

11th March, 2024

You may have seen some postal horror stories in the news about counterfeit stamps being sold and used. You may have even experienced a "counterfeit stamp" warning or fee on your mail!

Unfortunately, counterfeit and fraudulently treated postage stamps continue to be offered to uninformed buyers. There are also "copycat" websites out there, fake stamp sellers on reputable platforms, and criminals using social media and marketing techniques to deceive buyers.

"Discounted postage!"

"Buy 10, get 2 free!"

"20% off face value!"

Is it too good to be true? Or can you really save on your postage without taking the risk of counterfeits or fraudulently treated stamps?

Genuine, valid, discounted postage can indeed be bought safely. You just need to be careful.

We asked PTS Member, David Waldie of Philatelink for his top tips on buying discounted postage, safely. This tips relate to GB postage but the advice and sentiment is applicable for any country.

Top 5 Tips

  1. Try to purchase discounted postage stamps from professional stamp dealers who have a proven track record in buying and selling GB stamps. That way, any bad stamps are likely to have been spotted and weeded out. Most professional stamp dealers and members of the PTS will have a trusted core of reliable regular suppliers.

  2. Avoid sellers offering prices that seem too good to be true. For example, sellers retailing large quantities of NVI barcoded stamps at less than 60% face value are almost certainly not genuine.  

  3. Be very suspicious of any high value barcoded stamps being offered in large quantities. These are genuinely scarce (for example, many were not given out as part of the RM Swap-Out scheme) and therefore are not likely genuine discounted postage.  

  4. Try phoning the seller first before parting with funds. Always ask for a purchase receipt when buying online. Some fake sites only take payment and nothing else works on the website. This is a MAJOR RED FLAG. You can check the PTS Member Directory to see if the company you are dealing with is a valid member, and you'll find contact details there too.  

  5. Ask the seller about the source(s) of their stamps. Genuine dealers will provide a comprehensive answer of the various sources.

Philatelink is a leading specialist supplier of GB discounted postage stamps. Link to find out more:

You can see all PTS Members with contact details and links to websites and stores on the PTS Online Member Directory.

For more information on scams affecting Royal Mail stamps, please visit: Scam Examples

Think you've been offered counterfeit stamps, or think you've seen something of concern? For GB stamps, you can raise the issue with Royal Mail here: Stamp Fraud

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