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Swedish post rescinds fee for late postcard

TT/Vivian Tse · 9 Feb 2011, 17:02

Published: 09 Feb 2011 17:02 GMT+01:00

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On November 25, 1994 a postcard was mailed to Einar Persson in Ljusdal, 60 kilometres east of Hudiksvall, from Sundsvall. More than 16 years later, Persson has received a copy of the postcard with a demand that he fork out 16 kronor for the actual item from Posten.

At the time, postage was only 2.80 kronor and has since risen to 5.50 kronor for a postcard within Sweden.

"It was the correct postage when the item was posted," Persson told newspaper Ljusdals-Posten online on Wednesday while questioning Posten's demand for a fee.

The late delivery also means that Persson cannot reply to the sender, who died in 1995.

According to Posten, Persson appears to have erroneously been asked to pay up because the individual who assigned the fee likely did not notice the date the item was originally sent.

"We always request additional fees when there is not enough on the card. We shouldn't have done that. We don't read the letters. The man did not see that the card was posted 16 years ago. The man who received the postcard should not have had to pay," Posten press officer Per Ljungberg told The Local on Wednesday.

Story continues below…

He added that it is unclear why the postcard has only surfaced now.

"I don't know why he had to wait 16 years for a postcard. Probably someone found the card and put it in the mailbox. We get questions about these stories sometimes every year. Someone got a card 30 to 40 years ago a couple of months ago, but I don't have any figures, I'm afraid," said Ljungberg.

TT/Vivian Tse (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

23:23 February 9, 2011 by Great Scott
What bullshit, this is once again another story of management incompetents blaming the work force. This guy should be given compensation for the delay.
06:14 February 10, 2011 by UScitizen
Thr US Postal Service will deliver mail 60 years late and not ask that additional postage be paid. It's publicity there, usually wit a newspaper article, picture of a smiling person holding the card or letter, a good time is had by all!!
11:44 February 10, 2011 by ottmar
Of course, the entire incident is suspect. Clearly somebody re-mailed an already-delivered postcard, one probably delivered in 1994. There are lots of places where old postcards can be bought. That's always what has happened in the US whenever there's a story about a piece of mail finally getting delivered after 75 years. There's just no place for a letter to hide for that long. I can't believe that things could be that different with the Swedish postal service.
13:42 February 10, 2011 by UScitizen
@ ottmar

You're wrong there. I worked for the US Postal Service for 30 years. I saw old equipment moved out of buildings and cards or letters fall out that were 50 or more years old. Believe me, it happened.
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