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Topic: Buying stamps on ebay

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Subject: Buying stamps on ebay
Date Posted: 6/23/2009 3:38 PM ET
Member Since: 4/30/2009
Posts: 2,524
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I once saw on a post on a forum that mentioned some people buy stamps on ebay at a discount to use here.  Anyone out there have experience with that? Wondered about the pros and cons and how much you had saved. 

Date Posted: 6/25/2009 3:07 AM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,177
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Probably postage not stamps.  I've received several books with printed postage that say e-bay somewhere on the label.  These are very similar to PBS labels, but IIRC they are situated the other direction ie vertical instead of horizontal.   I'm assuming people pay for postage online, and print labels from the e-bay site.

Date Posted: 6/25/2009 6:24 AM ET
Member Since: 1/8/2009
Posts: 2,016
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I think Jeannie and Denise are thinking of two different things.

Jeannie is thinking of paying less than face value for stamps, which someone posted can be found on ebay in another thread. I was intrigued too but not entirely sure it was legitimate.

Denise is thinking of online postage that was purchased via paypal. They print out with something like "USPSis a preferred shipping partner of ebay."

Date Posted: 6/25/2009 12:10 PM ET
Member Since: 4/30/2009
Posts: 2,524
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Yes I was talking about actual stamps and did find them for sale on ebay.  I am wondering if others are using that successfully (and how much are your saving) without any concern about fakes.  Are there counterfeit stamps just as there is counterfeit currency? 

Date Posted: 6/29/2009 8:43 PM ET
Member Since: 9/24/2005
Posts: 447
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Yes, there are counterfeit stamps and have been cases of these being sold on ebay.  If used as postage, there's the possibility they will be recognized as counterfeit & traced back to the sender (you).

There was also a recent case of a PO employee stealing bricks of stamps (large quantities of sheets/booklets) and having someone sell them on ebay for him. This was in the hundreds of thousands of dollars worth.

Generally counterfeits & stolen stamps are for current or fairly recent rates. Auction lots containing older stamps are most likely not counterfeit, though they could still be stolen as can anything else on ebay. I was a stamp dealer for a while & would constantly get accumulations of sheets of older issues, most of which I would sell at a discount & were often used as postage. The downside on these lots is you need to use many stamps to make up the total which can be a challange to get on the package, as anyone who's gotten a book from me can attest.

Scott out.

Date Posted: 3/14/2010 8:51 PM ET
Member Since: 12/11/2009
Posts: 219
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I have bought many lots of older, odd-amount stamps at a significant discount on eBay. They work very well for me, and if you get a package from me you can expect to see many different stamps!

Date Posted: 3/16/2010 2:41 AM ET
Member Since: 12/29/2009
Posts: 287
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How do you find those stamps? I'm curious because I love oddball stamps, but whenever I search I always find collectable stamps.

Date Posted: 5/9/2010 9:28 PM ET
Member Since: 9/11/2005
Posts: 905
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I have bought a lot of stamps on Ebay and used them to mail books.  I usually get the ones without gum and have to use a glue stick to apply them, but you can get fully gummed ones, too.  Just plug in United States stamps, mint/unused in the search---about 50,000 or so lots will come up, some categorized as Postage or other formats in a column on the left and just go to that category.  You should be able to save from 10-25% on postage that way.  If you order a book from me (add to my 5700 books sent) and mention this I will find you an especially interesting mix of stamps to use on the package.  Send me a note if you want more clarification.

Date Posted: 5/13/2010 7:23 PM ET
Member Since: 5/11/2009
Posts: 61
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 I like to send packages with stamps and try to use a wide variety of stamps on each package (but not too many) but only one person has noticed this so far (I've sent out about 300 books but not all have postage stamps).  I have a loose leaf notebook with 'protector' pages and put the stamps  in the protector sheets and have them ordered by denomination.  I separate them with plain paper in between because it is jarring to the eye to see through the whole stack.   I also have a couple of lists of stamp combinations so I can consult them to see what stamps I need for $2.07 or $2.38 etc. (You can tell I have at least a tad of obsessive compulsive disorder -- OCD)

But, looking on Ebay I discovered that one of the stamps I was using was actually fairly valuable.  My brother gave me a bunch of stamps from his drawer including Elvis 29 cent stamps which are apparently worth from 50 cents to 1.50 for loose stamps and more if they are in sheets or blocks.

Even the cancelled Elvis stamps are worth about 20 cents.  So I guess I will hold on to those stamps for special occasions.