Policies: Orders, Shipping, Scans, Condition, Prices
PLACING AN ORDER
MINIMUM ORDER, $15.00.
PAYMENT. I accept Checks, Money Orders, PAY PAL, and the 3 major Credit Cards: VISA, Master Card, and American Express. I accept these ONLINE through the "Gateway" connected to my Shopping Cart, but I can't take them over the phone. I prefer PayPal to Credit Cards because it's faster and easier to process and to make any necessary refunds (See below.)
PLEASE USE THE CART. I would PREFER if you all used this "Shopping Cart" and placed your order online. However, I know that some of you are old Dinosaurs like me and would rather phone me or send in a written order. Now, this website has a good, built-in software program to monitor my inventory... which is pretty hefty in some areas, and a bit thin in others. But the software can't track what it can't see, and if you do send in a written order or phone it in, the software can't see it.
Because of this - and because I also sell on Ebay - I'm never really 100% in touch with my inventory. My apologies in advance for any inconvenience.
PLEASE, PLACE YOUR ORDER USING A DESKTOP COMPUTER, and not a mobile device. Everything works better that way.
MISTAKES/RETURNS? I'm not perfect... and if I make a mistake, I'll do everything I can to fix the situation to your satisfaction. If I send you the wrong item I'll replace it and pay any postage fees you incur in returning the item. Same is true if I send you a damaged item. I accept any such returns for a period of 14 days.
TAXES! TAXES! NEW YORK STATE residents are liable for N.Y. STATE SALES TAX. At this time, I BELIEVE I'm not required to collect Sales Tax on out-of-state sales, though this could change at any time. Respectfully, I ask both my NY STATE customers, as well as my WORLDWIDE customers who might be liable for any Value-Added Taxes (VAT) or CUSTOMS FEES, not to ask me to engage in any scheme to avoid whatever taxes are due.
SHIPPING CHARGES & MORE
Most orders will be shipped in a "Calumet" hard cardboard envelope (See scan at left). I've been using these for 50 years and they hold up very well in the mail, unlike "bubble-wrap" or other "soft" mailers.
I use the United States Postal Service to ship. IT SOMETIMES FEELS LIKE THE USPS is doing its best to make your life and mine miserable, with the costs of delivering mail & packages rising EVERY YEAR.... and I do the best I can to take the sting out of ordering.
ALL ORDERS WITHIN THE UNITED STATES will be sent as USPS First-Class Packages with USPS Tracking AND insurance included. Shipping AND Insurance charges for the minimum ($15) order are $4.00, and for every additional $4.00 you spend, the charges DECREASE by 25c, until they reach ZERO -- FREE SHIPPING -- with an order of $79.00.
This is a new program (as of February, 2023), and the numbers may need some "tweaking" in the future.
CANADIAN, MEXICAN, and WORLDWIDE ORDERS will be more expensive to ship. (Canada $15.00, Mexico $16.00, Worldwide $17.00). In each group, for every additional $20 you spend, shipping charges will be reduced by $1. Shipping becomes free at $315, $335, and $355. Tracking and Insurance are included at no charge.
EXCEPTION!! The WORLDWIDE shipping charges above are for STAMPS, CUT SQUARES, and POSTER STAMPS. For larger & heavier items (Postal Cards, Envelopes, First Day Covers and U.S./U.N. Souvenir Cards I MAY have to ask you for a few extra dollars, but only in EXTREME circumstances, and I'll always work with you to keep the shipping charges reasonable.
TRACKING; MISSING & LOST SHIPMENTS: With USPS Tracking, you can check on the progress of your shipment. This is especially important now, in the time of the COVID-19 virus. Mail volume is down, and Postal Services worldwide are scaling back operations in an attempt to cut costs.
You will receive a notice when your package is shipped. If it hasn't arrived within a week (U.S. orders) of this notice, please check the tracking. It's not "Panic-Time" yet... but it can't hurt to get ahead of the situation. You can start worrying after 2 weeks. Worldwide orders will take a bit longer.
I recently had a customer in Austria send me a nasty note after 6 weeks. I can understand his frustration... which would have been much less if he had checked on his package and sent me a note after 2 weeks. That's what tracking is for.
PLEASE TAKE NOTE:
In January, 2018, the USPS drastically changed the rules for insuring both Domestic and International shipments. Previously, "Merchandise" could be shipped as First Class Mail and insured. Now, it must be shipped as a "First Class PACKAGE" in order to be insured and tracked.
SO, a 3 oz U.S. shipment of stamps which I used to mail for $1.00, now costs $4+ to mail because it's a "Package" and not a "Letter". A 4 oz shipment to Germany which I used to mail for $3.50 now costs $17.00. In both cases, same stamps, same weight, same value, just a different technical designation. This is "verruckt". as they say in Germany.
If you are one of my worldwide customers, please know that I will work with you as best I can to keep your shipping costs reasonable (as long as this is not violating any tax laws).
I USE STOCK IMAGES. Let me tell you a story; it's not about STAMPS, but it's close. In 1929, MGM sent a film team to Africa for the movie "Trader Horn" (which was released in 1931). They returned with over a million feet of film. For the next 17 years, anytime you watched an MGM movie about Africa -- including the Tarzan series -- you were watching animals doing what animals do -- or did -- in 1929. In fact, the footage lived longer than most of the animals; when you saw a lion "inviting a zebra to dinner" in 1948, you were watching a dinner guest who had been "served" 19 years previously. This is called stock footage, and it's a lot like the stock images I use on this website.
Many of the scans I use were taken years ago, some as early as the mid-1990s. These scans are for IDENTIFICATION purposes, and not to indicate the exact condition of the item being purchased. For condition, always go with the written description. The stamp you purchase may look SLIGHTLY different from the one in the scan, but it will always conform to the description.
EXAMPLE: The scan below shows 3 stamps from Iceland. ALL of them are F-VF in centering. However, the one at the left is centered towards the bottom (though perfectly centered left to right), the one at the center is centered towards the right (though perfectly centered with large margins top to bottom) and the one at the right is centered both towards the left AND towards the top.
Despite these differences, they ALL meet the standard for f-vf centering. Personally, I would prefer to own the one at the left. It's a more balanced stamp and a STRONG F-VF, only a smidge below the standard for VERY FINE...just not quite there.
I SCAN 'EM BIG...
I scan single stamps at 216 pixels-per-inch, and then blow the scans up to 651 pixels total. I scan most small sets at 144 pixels, and then blow the scans up to 651 pixels total. The "thumbnail" (IF I have one...) on the catalog page will show smaller versions of my scan. If you click the thumbnail you'll be taken to the item page where you'll find a larger scan... and if you run the mouse cursor across the image you'll get the full-size scan. SOME of my older scans may show less detail.
...BUT I DON'T SCAN 'EM ALL. I don't provide scans for every stamp I sell. That's just not possible; if I did, then I wouldn't have any time left for buying them and filling your orders.
Most of the stamps I have for sale at this time are offered in what I call "F-VF or Better" condition. By this I mean they will be AT LEAST F-VF in centering (see above scans), with many of the more recent items (by which I mean roughly 1960-to-date) being VF or better.
Most modern stamps are carefully printed, I'm just saying that it isn't worth paying a premium for something you'll PROBABLY get anyway.
AT SOME POINT IN THE FUTURE...
....I'll expand this section and provide a more detailed explanation of centering. For now, since I'm only loading modern Worldwide Stamps and Poster Stamps, this is not yet needed. Once I begin to load earlier material (especially U.S.) where centering is a major factor in pricing, I'll provide additional information.
Prices are GENERALLY based on the Scott Standard Postage Stamp Catalog...discounted, of course! When necessary, other catalogs may be used for Specialized Material.
ONE SMALL DETAIL... Regardless of any Catalog Value or discount, I don't sell any stamp (either individually or as part of a set) for less than 25c. This isn't about the value of the stamp; it's about the value of my time.
SATISFACTION IS GUARANTEED ON ALL ORDERS!
ANY QUESTIONS, PLEASE CONTACT ME.
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