How To Start Stamp Collecting

Stamp collecting is one of the most enjoyable hobbies around – and that is because, ultimately, it can make you money.

Stamps cover various periods in time, so they can display things like famous figures, art, political things, celebrations, etc.

Many different groups around the world focus on tracking down and buying rare stamps. Stamp collecting is the right way to go when looking for hobbies that don’t involve technology at all.

Why do we use stamps?

The first stamp that was ever made was in Great Britain in 1840, and since then, we have had many variations. The first stamp was called the Penny Black.

The postage stamp is typically a small rectangle that is attached to an envelope, and it signifies that there has been a payment made, and the letter can then be delivered.

Ahead of stamps being introduced, the postage was due on receipt of the letter – leaving the person who received the latter to pay. This meant that only people with money could send and receive their letters, and the rest needed to be returned.

Then, it was decided that the post office could make cash if the letter was already paid for in advance.

And so now we use stamps all over the world to send things.

So as a beginner in stamp collecting, what should you know?

Finding good stamps

As you can imagine, some of the oldest stamps are worth a lot more than the price they cost originally. To start your stamp collection, you can start by finding more common ones to begin to fill up your stamp album.

Then it is time to turn your sights on stamps that can bring you money too.

You can start with some not-so-rare and world stamps on eBay, and after that, when you want to build a more serious investment type collection, an online stamp auction.

There are also fares, talks, shows and exhibitions that are worth going to so that you can begin to see what sets rare stamps apart – and why they are worth so much money.

What type of stamps

A stamp is a stamp… or is it? There are many different types of stamps, and you might prefer to focus your collection on one specific type. You will see the following types of stamps:

  • Special stamps: holidays, loves, priority mail, international and other special events
  • Definitive is a smaller stamp that is printed in huge quantities over and over – think about the most common stamps you use
  • Commemorative stamps are short runs and only printed once.

You’ll also find used stamps, and they often have a stamp on them to confirm they have been used (and thus cannot be used to send more mail). Mint stamps are stamps that have never been used, and these can be worth much more than used.

Country specific stamps can be fun for collectors that have a link with a specific country, and there are also stamps with topics.

Stamps that have a specific item on like flowers, Disney, comic books, space or others. These are becoming more popular in the world of collectors.

How much are your stamps worth?

In the world of collecting, the stamp is worth as much as the value people place on it – and in some cases, that can be a fortune.

The British Guiana 1c Magenta (1856) stamp, known as the “Mona Lisa of the stamp world,” is thought to be the most valuable man-made artefact. It is valued at approximately 2.5 million times more than 24-carat gold (gram for gram), a collector paid $8.3 million (£6.2 million) for the stamp at auction in June 2021.

To be able to value your stamps correctly, you will need to use a stamp catalogue and do plenty of research.


Since you will be stamp collecting as a means of investment, it is important that you have the right insurance for your collection. There are many companies that specialise in providing the right insurance for stamp collections and other collectables.

Are stamps a good investment?

In general, stamps are a great investment and, more specifically, a long-term investment. It is unlikely that you will want to buy a rare stamp and sell it immediately. Instead, you will wait some time so that it will go up in value, and you can reap the rewards of the increased value.

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