Can I Mail Postcards From A Cruise Ship?

Hey, have you ever been on a cruise and wanted to send a little piece of your vacation to your loved ones back home? Well, you’re not alone! Many people wonder if they can mail postcards directly from a cruise ship. The good news is, in most cases, you absolutely can!

While on board a cruise ship, you’ll usually find a post office or mail drop box where you can leave your postcards to be sent out. Just like a regular post office, the ship’s mail service will handle your postcards and ensure they reach their intended recipients. It’s a convenient and hassle-free way to send a little bit of your vacation to your friends and family.

In our upcoming article, we’ll dive deeper into this topic and provide you with more information on how to mail postcards from a cruise ship. We’ll explain the process, give you tips to ensure your postcards arrive safely, and even discuss any potential limitations or restrictions you may encounter. So, stay tuned and get ready to learn more about this fun and easy way to share your travel experiences with others!

Overview of Mailing Postcards from a Cruise Ship

Understanding the Process

When you embark on a cruise ship vacation, you might be wondering if it’s possible to mail postcards to your loved ones back home. The good news is that many cruise ships offer mailing services onboard, allowing you to send postcards directly from the ship. In this article, we will explore the entire process of mailing postcards from a cruise ship, including the preparation, options, restrictions, costs, delivery timeframes, and alternative options available to you.

Availability of Mailing Services on Cruise Ships

Most cruise ships provide mailing services for their passengers. These services are typically available at the ship’s purser’s desk, which serves as the on-board post office. However, the availability of these services can vary depending on the cruise line and specific ship you are traveling on. It is always recommended to check with the cruise line or refer to the ship’s daily newsletter for information on mailing services.

Preparing Your Postcards for Mailing

Choosing and Purchasing Postcards

Before you can mail postcards from a cruise ship, you will need to select and purchase postcards. Cruise ships often have their own gift shops where you can find a variety of postcards featuring picturesque views of the destinations you visit. These postcards usually have a pre-printed design on the front and blank space on the back for you to write your message and address.

Addressing the Postcards

Once you have your postcards, it’s time to address them. Write the recipient’s address on the designated space on the back of the postcard. Make sure to include the complete address, including the street name, city/town, state/province, country, and postal code. Double-check the accuracy of the address to ensure that your postcard reaches its destination.

Attaching Stamps

After addressing your postcards, it’s time to attach stamps. Cruise ships typically have postage stamps available for purchase at the purser’s desk. The cost of the stamps may vary depending on the destination and weight of the postcard. The purser’s desk staff will be able to provide you with the required amount of stamps for your postcards.

Adding Personal Touches

Before you drop your postcards off at the purser’s desk, consider adding some personal touches. You can write a heartfelt message, draw a small doodle, or even include a photo of yourself. These personal touches will make your postcards extra special and memorable for the recipients.

Mailing Options on a Cruise Ship

Onboard Mailbox

Once your postcards are prepared, you can drop them off at the onboard mailbox. Cruise ships typically have designated mailboxes where passengers can deposit their outgoing mail. Make sure to inquire about the location of the mailbox as it can vary from ship to ship. The crew will regularly collect the mail from these mailboxes and ensure that your postcards are sent out.

Mail Pick-Up and Delivery Schedules

Cruise ships usually have specific pick-up and delivery schedules for mail. The schedules can vary, but they are often announced in the ship’s daily newsletter or posted at the purser’s desk. It’s essential to be aware of these schedules to ensure that you drop off your postcards before the designated pick-up time for them to be processed and mailed out.

Post Office Services on the Ship

In addition to basic mailing services, some cruise ships also offer post office services on board. These services include purchasing additional postage stamps, posting packages, and even receiving incoming mail. If you are expecting mail to be delivered to you during your cruise, it’s advisable to inquire about these services in advance.

Restrictions and Considerations

International Mailing Restrictions

When mailing postcards from a cruise ship, it’s important to be aware of international mailing restrictions. Different countries have varying regulations on what can and cannot be sent through the mail. Some items, such as perishable goods or certain types of liquids, may be prohibited. It’s crucial to familiarize yourself with the specific restrictions of the countries you are visiting to ensure that your postcards comply with the regulations.

Customs Declarations

If you are mailing postcards to an international destination, you may be required to fill out customs declaration forms. These forms provide information about the contents of your package and their value. Cruise ships usually have these forms readily available at the purser’s desk, and the staff will be able to assist you in filling them out correctly.

Prohibited Items

In addition to international restrictions, there are also specific items that are prohibited from being sent through the mail, regardless of the destination. These items include weapons, explosives, illegal drugs, and flammable materials. It’s essential to review the list of prohibited items and ensure that your postcards do not contain any of these items before mailing them.

Costs and Payment Methods

Postage Costs

The cost of mailing postcards from a cruise ship can vary depending on factors such as the destination and weight of the postcard. Cruise ships typically charge a standard postage fee for each postcard. The purser’s desk staff will be able to provide you with the exact cost of postage and the accepted payment methods.

Accepted Payment Methods

When mailing postcards from a cruise ship, it’s essential to be aware of the accepted payment methods. Most cruise ships accept cash, credit cards, and sometimes even shipboard credit for payment of postage. Make sure to inquire about the accepted payment methods at the purser’s desk to ensure that you have the necessary payment options available.

Delivery Timeframes and Reliability

Factors Affecting Delivery Time

The delivery time for your postcards can vary depending on several factors. The destination of the postcard, the efficiency of the postal services in the country you are sending to, and any potential delays due to weather or other unforeseen circumstances can all impact the delivery timeframe. It’s essential to keep these factors in mind and inform your recipients accordingly.

Ensuring Reliable Delivery

To ensure the reliable delivery of your postcards, it’s recommended to provide accurate and complete addresses. It’s also advisable to mail your postcards well in advance, especially if you are mailing them to international destinations. By allowing ample time for delivery, you can minimize the risk of any unexpected delays.

Alternative Options for Mailing Postcards

Port of Call Post Offices

If mailing postcards from the ship’s onboard services does not suit your needs, you also have the option to visit post offices at port of call destinations. Most cruise ship itineraries include stops at various ports, and these ports often have local post offices where you can mail your postcards. Visiting local post offices can provide a more traditional and authentic mailing experience.

Off-Ship Mailing Services

In some cases, you may prefer to use off-ship mailing services. Prior to your cruise, you can research and locate postal services near the ports of call. These independent mailing services often offer competitive rates and reliable delivery options. You can drop off your postcards at these locations during your shore excursions and have peace of mind knowing that they will be mailed promptly.

Benefits of Mailing Postcards from a Cruise Ship

Convenience for Cruise Passengers

One of the main benefits of mailing postcards from a cruise ship is the convenience it offers to passengers. With onboard mailing services, you don’t have to worry about finding a local post office or carrying your postcards throughout your journey. The ship’s purser’s desk becomes your one-stop-shop for all your mailing needs.

Unique Experience

Mailing postcards from a cruise ship also provides a unique experience. Not only do you get to send a piece of your vacation to friends and family, but your postcards also carry the special charm of being sent from a ship. It adds a touch of excitement and adventure to your mailings, making them even more memorable for both you and the recipients.

Special Ship Stamps

Some cruise ships offer special ship stamps that are unique to their vessels. These stamps feature the ship’s name, logo, or design, giving your postcards an extra touch of exclusivity. Collectors or enthusiasts of cruise ship memorabilia would particularly appreciate the opportunity to include these special ship stamps on their postcards.

Suggestions for Collectors

Collecting Cruise Ship Postmarks

If you are a postcard collector, mailing postcards from a cruise ship allows you to collect unique postmarks and cancellations. Each postmark carries the date and location of where the postcard was stamped, creating a unique record of your journey. Collecting cruise ship postmarks can be a fascinating hobby and a way to commemorate your travels.

Tracking Ship Postcards

For collectors or those interested in keeping a record of their mailed postcards, it can be beneficial to track their progress. Some postal services offer tracking options, allowing you to monitor the journey of your postcards from the ship to their final destination. This can provide a sense of satisfaction and ensure peace of mind that your postcards have been successfully delivered.


In conclusion, mailing postcards from a cruise ship is not only possible but also a convenient and unique way to share your vacation experiences with loved ones. By adhering to the preparation guidelines, understanding the available options and restrictions, and considering alternative services, you can effectively send postcards from the comfort of your cruise ship. So go ahead and capture those special moments of your cruise on postcards, add a personal touch, and let the adventure continue as you mail them to your awaiting recipients. Happy cruising!