February 26, 2012

Turkish Postage


I got a letter from Turkey! I've never seen Turkish mail before, so I must ask you, dear readers, about the placement of the postage. Is it normal to place the stamps at the end of the envelope like the above letter? It seems like it would be standard, given the placement of the cancellation mark. Can anyone confirm this is standard placement for Turkish post, or offer an explanation for the reason behind this curious formatting?

It may be that there is no compelling reason behind the placement, other than "That's how Turkey does it." And that would be fascinating. I love it when I encounter countries and cultures which do things differently for reasons other than necessity.

UPDATE: An anonymous commenter has provided us with an answer. On a side note, Turkey is definitely in my top five countries to visit. 


Eliza Ward said...

Looks like noone has answered--so I guess it would be a good question to ask your Turkish penpal when you reply!

James said...

I gotta figure out how to get more readers in Turkey.

Anonymous said...

Not standard at all. Postage is usually attached to the top right corner in Turkey as well, this is an odd application of stamps which were hand cancelled. The only difference I know of Turkish post when compared to USPS is that they usually do not use postage labels, the envelopes go through a machine when you hand them at the post office and pay for postage which prints the amount directly on the envelope. Just like Pitney Bowes here in the US. They resort to labels or stamps only if the envelopes do not fit in the machines, or if you specifically ask for them.

I lived in Turkey for years and sent and received mail extensively. Turkish post, unlike what most people would think, is very reliable. I didn't have a single issue of lost or stolen mail. They can arrive late and get damaged more though as, like many foreign post offices, they use bags vs. USPS using other more protective containers.

As a side note, Turkey is a country which most people have prejudices against and think negatively due to the propaganda of the many enemies they have since Ottoman Empire times. Turks have a saying: "Nobody that hasn't been to Turkey likes it, nobody that has been to Turkey dislikes it." According to Interpol, for instance, Turkey is the safest country in Europe. Would you have guessed?

James said...

Thanks a million, Anon!