Postcards have a little bit of a bad rap nowadays. Some find them a bit tacky, others find them a pointless exercise. After all, why bother sending a postcard when you can just send someone an email? Or upload a picture to Facebook that you took 5 minutes ago?
While those ways are all well and good, I’m a huge advocate of the humble postcard. I love sending postcards to my friends and family when I’m away, and I get a huge kick when one arrives in my post box from a friend on their travels!
Why Should We Send More Postcards?
This post is actually inspired by recent research done by the folks at BIC, the iconic pen manufacturer. They actually found out that teenagers are expressing less and less interest in handwriting letters, notes and diaries, opting instead for fancier tech options. As a result, they’ve launched #JustWrite day on the 29 October, which looks to reintroduce the simple pleasure of handwriting.
Now, I know the #JustWrite day is a little far off, but as we enter a new year I thought it would be cute to look at how we communicate about our travels. In a world where computers are taking over every corner of our lives, it’s blog posts, social media updates and emails that are replacing the common postcard. But maybe we should be re-evaluating the way we share information about our travels? Otherwise we run the risk of the postcard dying out.
My Postcard Obsession
I do try and send as many postcards as I can when I’m away. My ability to send one is usually only hindered if I a) can’t work out how/where to buy a stamp, and b) can’t work how what the postbox looks like. (Admittedly, these two things do tend to happen a bit more than I would actually like…)
But when I do work out how the postal system works, no one escapes my postcards. Not even companies I work with:
One of my favourite things is sending postcards home to my family. Of course, I will email and whatsapp them as much as I can, but I think sending a postcard shows an extra layer of thoughtfulness. This is one I sent my family from Vegas:
The back reads:
It’s our second-to-last day in Vegas tomorrow and we’re off to the Valley of Fire for a short guided tour. Already seen Britney, the Grand Canyon and the Hoover Dam – crazy to be able to say that! Love you all lots and miss you loads. Can’t wait to see you. Love, Emily xxxxxx
Admittedly, it’s not ground-breaking material. At all. But even now I can remember exactly where I was when I wrote this postcard – lounging on my snuggly double bed in the Venetian hotel while we took a brief break from the madness of the city. Of course, when you send postcards back home to your family (or even to yourself!) you get a nice little reminder of your visit when you see it. And if you’re a nerd like me you can also see what the ink stamp looks like when it arrives on your front mat!
Other Ways To Reintroduce Handwriting Into Your Travels
Let’s face it: postcards aren’t for everyone. Or sometimes you just can’t find a suitable postcard that doesn’t look like it’s been sitting out on the stand for 20 years, amirite? But there are other ways to reintroduce handwriting forms into your travels, like keeping a journal/diary or handwriting blog posts in a notebook. However we bring back the art of handwriting, I reckon 2016 is the year to do it. What say you?
This post is in collaboration with BIC for their #JustWrite campaign. However, all postcard-loving thoughts are my own!