Where to find stamps
The use of stamps for personal communication has almost collapsed since the invention of social media. As a result, stamps are no longer a natural collectable. So the question is: where can you get stamps?
There are three main sources: stamp fairs, dealers, auctions
Stamp fairs are a good place to meet people, browse through the stocks of local dealers; and talk about collecting in a relaxed environment
There are a number of regular stamp fairs in South Africa. You can find out about them here or by visiting the website of the South African Philatelic Dealers’ Association
Dealers are a great source of both collectables and advice. A good dealer will help you to put together a great collection. Dealers keep an eye open for the things you need; and let you know when important material comes onto the market.
It’s always best to buy stamps from a dealer who belongs to a professional association. This will ensure that you have some recourse if you want to complain about something. There is only one dealer network that’s affiliated to our Federation; and that’s the South African Philatelic Dealers’ Association (SAPDA for short). You can find out about them here or by going to their website: www.sapda.co.za
Auctions are a very good way to find bargains as long as you know what the catalogue value of an item is. You’ll often be able to buy philatelic collectables for prices that are far below their catalogue value. Just make sure that you’re dealing with an auctioneer with a good reputation
There are a number of regular auctions in South Africa. You can find out about there here or by visiting the website of the South African Philatelic Dealers’ Association
There are also many great Auction Houses overseas. Most have excellent facilities for live, online bidding. One of the easiest ways to do this, is to visit the website of the Stamp Auction Network. It will enable you to browse through what’s on offer; and then to participate live when the auction takes place
We shouldn’t conclude this section without mentioning Bid or Buy, eBay and Delcampe. All three can be seen as online bazaars for almost everything to collect and can be a great source to acquire stamps for your collection. However, if you do buy from them, make sure that you are buying from a trusted seller