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 Home  >  We Buy Stamps  >  Shipping Stamp Collections to Jay Smith & Associates
Summary
Preparing a stamp collection for shipment may seem like it is going to be a big pain, but proper shipment will reward you with a trouble-free process and can even increase the offer you receive.

A little time taken to review this information and to obtain the proper supplies will be time very well spent. Be patient and don't feel that everything has to be done in a hurry. Work at your own pace.

Please contact me to discuss your collection before sending anything. Thank you.

[This information is generally for shipments within the U.S. Shipments from outside the U.S. will require different details regarding shipping methods. However, if you are sending from outside the U.S., be aware that, while the usual Customs paperwork is necessary, the Customs Duty on stamps coming into the U.S. is ZERO!]

If you have questions not covered below, please ask! Your questions will help me to improve this page.

Just the highlights:
  • Our address:

    All Postal MAIL to:
        Jay Smith & Associates
        P.O. Box 650
        Snow Camp, NC 27349-0650 USA

    Courier/Parcel (UPS, FedEx, etc.) ONLY to (NO mail!!!):
        Jay Smith & Associates
        (Phone: 336-376-9991)
        450 East Greensboro Chapel Hill Road
        Snow Camp, NC 27349 USA
     
  • Please contact me to discuss your collection before sending anything. Thank you.
     
  • What you do NOT need to do! No inventories or lists are necessary. Don't "organize". Please do talk to me before sending books, catalogs, or magazines.
     
  • How does the process work? You send. I let you know it arrived. It is covered by my insurance when it arrives. I will normally make an offer within a couple days to two weeks, depending upon the size of the collection and my schedule. My offer is my best and only offer. This is not an appraisal; there is a fee for appraisals. There is NO CHARGE for my offer, but if my offer is not accepted (rarely), you pay for the return shipping.
     
  • Send it all or just send part? Usually best to send everything. I buy Scandinavia and all U.S. and Worldwide material. You will get a higher total (sum of parts) offer if you send all at the same time. (Please contact me to discuss your collection before sending anything. Thank you.)
     
  • For how much do I insure the shipment? This is a difficult question. Read this text.
     
  • Select the correct box and pack it tight. Use the strongest boxes you can; remember as the weight increases, the strength of the box must increase even more. Use the largest boxes that you can safely lift, but maximum around 50 pounds. Pack tightly so that nothing can move inside; if it can move, it can cause damage and even break the box open. For the same weight, fewer boxes will cost you much less to ship than more boxes.
     
  • "Strapping" ..... Boxes have THREE dimensions. Use lots of strong strapping tape. Wrap the tape all the way around the box in all three directions. Don't just seal the top and bottom. Seal with tape every opening, including the glued-closed side opening from manufacturing. And go all the way around the box, in the length, height, and girth dimensions. If you waste any money, waste it on tape. Note that if sent by Registered Mail, you have to use brown paper tape.
     
  • Private stamp insurance changes everything. If you have private insurance, keep it until the transaction is completed. Always carefully read and understand shipping terms and limits under your private insurance; this may also save you on shipping costs.
     
  • Mail vs parcel companies such as UPS. I usually recommend mail. Some parcel companies do not accept stamps (if they are told) and may deny insurance claims on stamps. However, bulky inexpensive items may best be sent by UPS (compare cost with Parcel Post Mail). If books, the post office's Media Mail is cheapest.
     
  • Express vs Registered vs Insured Mail vs Uninsured Mail vs UPS Express Mail is too costly. Registered Mail offers the best protection and can be insured, but is costly. Divide out inexpensive material and send separately. Insured Mail used to get stolen more often than Uninsured Mail. UPS is probably only best for lower-value bulky material. Read all the details here. Registered mail requires brown paper tape.
     
  • The post office's dirty little secrets to get your money. Postal clerks have been trained to initially offer only the more costly services which you may or may not need. You may not need Priority Mail for everything, but you have to ask for lower cost options (such as Parcel Post, now called "Standard Mail", but that now often costs almost as much as Priority Mail). Also, books and catalogs (but not stamp albums or stock books) can be sent by Media Mail.
     
  • Bind it tight. Albums, boxes of stamps, and anything that stamps can fall out of should be tightly bound to avoid damage in transit.
     
  • Put these fine stamps in trash bags. Wrap everything in plastic to prevent moisture damage. This also keeps stamps from falling out. And if a shipping carton breaks open in transit, it helps keep things intact.
     
  • Label, label, label. Every plastic bag or other container in a shipping carton should be clearly labeled with a "from and to" label. If the shipping carton breaks open in transit, these labels are the only way to get the items to us (or back to you) safely. Thus, attach the labels very securely.

I know that this all seems quite complicated and too detailed. If you want more detail, keep reading. Just click on the title of each of the above subjects to learn more. Some of this detail will not apply to your situation. However, despite the detail, this information will make the whole process go smoothly and safely, with maximum financial return for you.
What You Do NOT Need To Do!
Unless you want to do it for reasons of your own, it is NOT necessary to prepare lists, inventories, catalog value totals, etc. The process I go through seldom makes enough use of such paperwork to justify creating the paperwork.

You do NOT need to "organize" or otherwise change the nature of the collection as it is now. If you are the collector yourself and you want to do a little organization, fine. But if you are not the collector, perhaps you are a family member, sometimes "organizing" can cause valuable information to be lost. Sometimes just how the stamps are group together on pages or envelopes is useful "information" itself. If you are not the collector yourself, I strongly recommend that you not try to change anything.

Generally do NOT take pages out of binders and do NOT take stamps out of albums. The binders help to protect the pages during shipment. If the binders are proper stamp album binders in good condition, they do also have value and may also be helpful for me when when perhaps selling parts of the collection to other collectors -- making the collection worth more. When still on the album pages, the stamps are much easier to evaluate and thus to make sure that they are valued as highly as possible.

You do NOT need to send old (more than five years old) Scott Catalogs. Always discuss the material with me before sending reference catalogs, books, old auction catalogs, old magazines and news papers. Some of these are very much of interest and worth money. However, others are not worth the postage to ship them. Talk to me first and I will guide you.
How Does The Process Work?
When you send a collection to me for my offer, if you want financial protection while in transit, you should insure it (or in the case of registered mail, declare a value for insurance purposes) to protect yourself in case of loss in the mail. Losses are very rare, but deciding upon your level of risk tolerance is up to you. If you already have private stamp insurance, review your policy for its terms, conditions, and coverage limits for shipment.

Once the collection arrives here, it is covered by my insurance.

I will inform you of the collection's arrival.

I will carefully examine the collection and calculate an offer to purchase. The amount of time this takes will depend upon the size of the collection, my travel commitments to stamp shows, and similar factors. Generally, if I am not traveling, most modest-size collections can be examined within a week, with larger collections requiring more time.

I will make an offer for the entire collection or group that you have sent to me. I do not pick and choose just the best items. There are some dealers who have been known to suggest it would be better for you if they buy just certain items or parts of the collection and then you will still be able to sell the other parts for even more money. I don't think it works that way. No sane dealer would leave anything "good" behind. In my experience, it is best to have one offer for the entire collection or group you have offered for sale.

My offer is my best and only offer. I value my reputation and I don't mess around. I know that there are buyers who will start by offering $500 and then, when that is refused, they "Oh, I found another scarce stamp, so I can offer $1000." And then when that is refused.... you get the point. I try my utmost to do my best for you the first time.

More than 95% of my offers are accepted. And, frankly, the vast majority of the small number of my offers that have not have been accepted over the years are due to the seller's (usually not a stamp collector) incorrect understanding of what the material is and/or the condition/quality of the material. I may be able to do a lot of things, but I can't make damaged stamps become undamaged and I can't make 10 cent stamps into the rare $100 varieties.

I am not preparing an "appraisal" in this process. If you need an "appraisal" for insurance, estate, legal, or other purposes, contact me about your needs and the fee structure for that service.

There is NO CHARGE for the (usually significant) amount of work that I put into examining the collection and calculating an offer. However, if my offer is not accepted, the cost of return shipping is borne by the seller.

Payment can be arranged by virtually any method, to virtually any location, in virtually any currency.

After so many years in the business and thus the aging of my clientele, fewer remaining stamp dealers, and the general demographics of stamp collectors, I am being sent a large number of collections; often several per week. Depending upon the amount of money involved and other collections that have recently come in, my offer may include terms for monthly payments. (Please contact me to discuss your collection before sending anything. Thank you.)

It's that simple!
Send It All or Just Send Part?
Many collections have been built over a lifetime and most include many types and qualities of material. While some collections consist of just two or three neat and tidy albums, others occupy large portions of a building. I am accustomed to dealing with both extremes.

Some sellers want to "test drive" me to make sure that my approach and my offer will meet their expectations. They may wish to send just a portion of the collection. That is perfectly understandable and fine with me. The only caution in this regard is that for the highest offer, logical portions of collections must remain together. If a collection includes three volumes of Norway or four volumes of China, don't split up the respective countries unless they are truly different parts.

Other sellers simply want to do everything in a single transaction and "find a new home" for everything at once. This is certainly the most straight-forward approach and there is a real benefit to doing everything in a single transaction or at least in fewer transactions. Every transaction has labor and time costs associated with it and any stamp dealer (who are business people) must take those costs into account. Buying a 10-volume collection in a single transaction has fewer time & labor costs for a dealer than buying those 10 volumes in 10 transactions. The way that I do business, that savings is paid to the seller in the form of a higher offer.
For How Much Do I Insure The Shipment?
Above I mentioned insurance for shipping. This question is one of the first asked by family members, and, by far, is one of the most difficult to answer.

If you are the collector or an experienced philatelist, you will probably be able to come up with a approximate valuation. If in doubt, insure high. In the case of a claim (if the airplane the shipment is on crashes), you might have an argument with post office about the insurance amount, but under no circumstances are they going to pay more than the declared amount. If you know the catalog value of the collection, use that. If you have an idea of your purchase cost over time, that can be a starting point, but you should probably use a higher figure.

If you are not the collector and not aware of stamp values, this question is nearly impossible for me to answer. The best answer I can offer is pick a figure that would make you very happy if you received a check in that amount. (Remember insurance has a cost, so a very high insurance figure will result in higher shipping cost.)

If the collection was not largely built with my assistance, I probably do not have very much information about what it contains until I have seen it. If the collection was built with my assistance, I will be happy to offer insurance advise to the extent of the knowledge that I have. However, even if a collector purchased from me for 25 years, he or she may have been buying from other sources during that time and before and/or after that time.

Another annoying aspect to this question is that you may know or I may be able to advise regarding a total insurance value, but when a collection is shipped in 10 cartons, how is that total value assigned on a per-carton basis? Usually most of the value is concentrated in very few physical areas of the collection. Thus, it is usually not appropriate to just divide the total by 10 cartons. Hopefully we can work together over the phone to identify the areas of more concentrated value and insure those appropriately. This may also lead to one or two packages being sent by Registered Mail with insurance and the other packages being sent by Insured Priority Mail.

All this talk about insurance is a bit scary for some. Unfortunately, bad things can happen, but it is very rare for a collection to be lost or seriously damaged in shipping. If Registered Mail is used, then the risks are more along the lines of airplane crashes and truck fires than theft. If UPS, or one of the other parcel / courier services, is used, the risks are more associated with physical damage from being run over by a forklift or loss due to delivery to the wrong address.

In 45 years, the only major loss of an incoming collection that I can remember involved an international shipment and a theft ring of baggage handlers. Many cartons have been banged a bit too hard or have gotten damp, but if the directions I give below are followed, those risks are very minimal.
Packing 101
Much of the rest of this discussion relates to how to pack boxes. It is not that I think I am smarter than everybody else or that nobody else knows how to pack a box. However, based on what I see arrive in the mail, sometimes it is just plain luck that a box arrived in one piece -- or that a postal worker was caring enough to bind it all back together.

Please take from the following what you find useful. Keep in mind that it is a lot easier to spend a couple extra minutes packing than to lose money on lost or damaged stamps.
Select The Correct Box and Pack It Tight
What could be more simple? A box is a box, right? Wrong! There are many different grades of boxes and in U.S. commerce, boxes are supposed to bear a manufacturer's imprint as to its strength. Think of the difference in strength between a liquor box vs a box that tissue paper was shipped in.

I don't mean to go nerdy on you, but there are also a couple matters of physics that have everything to do with this subject.
  • Mass matters! The heavier the contents of a box, the greater the need for greater box strength. This seems so obvious, yet is often overlooked by most philatelic shippers (most notably overseas catalog publishers who I should shame by naming them here). Pay attention to the weight being put into a box and really think about whether or not that box is strong enough.
     
  • Momentum matters! This is not so much about strength of boxes, but about the packing of them -- but it is the box that will be the ultimate tester of the packing. If objects in the box are not packed tightly, they can move. That's simple. But, what most people forget is that these boxes are handled by the post office or parcel companies with machines and high-speed conveyors. If a conveyor belt is moving at 40 MPH, and the box hits an obstruction or the conveyor turns a corner, the CONTENTS of the box will continue moving at 40 MPH in the original direction of travel. In other words, the box may attempt to turn the corner, but the contents of the box will keep moving straight -- blowing out the side of the box and perhaps across the room. If you think this is preposterous, you have not been to one of the post office's lost and damaged mail auctions.
There is also an important matter of finance that will help keep more money in your wallet. Shipping 40 pounds divided in three boxes is usually going to cost twice as much as it would if it was shipped in a single box.

Obviously, you will want to limit the weight in a box (and thus the size of a box because you never want to use boxes that are too large), to what you and/or your helpers can comfortably handle without injury.

On this end, I prefer that boxes be less than 50 pounds. That is also a good maximum for safety in general. (The maximum allowed is usually 70 pounds.)

A moment ago I said never use boxes that are too large for the contents. If a box has a lot of extra space, it has to be filled to keep the contents from moving around and becoming damaged. If you fill that empty space with "solid" filling it will cost a lot more in postage. However, if you fill that empty space with "peanuts" or crumpled newspaper, etc., those materials usually crush in transit allowing the contents to move around and become damaged. The best solution is always to use "solid" filling (pieces of styrofoam, folded-up corrugated cardboard, etc.).

If the box is too large for the contents, rather than using a lot of filling, consider cutting down the box. This is often the best solution as it both minimizes postage cost and results in a slightly smaller box that is easier to handle.

I have been challenged many times about the above statement regarding use of "peanuts". We all get packages containing a few doo-dads, surrounded by peanuts. The whole thing weighs 6 pounds and there is happiness. However, when we are talking about a box full of stamp albums, it does not weigh 6 pounds, it weighs 30 or 40 or 50 pounds -- and the contents literally pound the "peanuts" into little bits. Once the "peanuts" have been compacted in this manner, the contents can move in an ever-larger open space which can lead to breaking out the side of the box.

When you are done, there should be no movement at all in the box. You should be able to turn it over and around, and nothing should shift.

The box should be full enough to have "positive pressure". You should have to work a bit to get it to close and it should bulge just a tiny bit. (By the time it gets here, that bit of bulge will be long gone.)

I used to tell people that it should be packed full enough and firmly enough that a 12-year-old child should be able to stand on it without causing a problem. Then, a kindly grandmother said "You have not seen my grandson, have you?" She has a point. But so do I.
"Strapping" ..... Boxes Have THREE Dimensions
For some reason, most of us look at a box and see TWO dimensions, height and width. But there is a third dimension, girth -- the "around". This is vitally important because when a not-strong-enough box fails and breaks apart, it can do so in any of those THREE dimensions.

Most of the boxes you and I receive when we order a couple of doo-dads from a website have a strip of tape at the top and the bottom. That's it. And that is usually fine because the whole thing only weighs 6 pounds.

However, when a box is heavy, it is vitally important to wrap strong tape around in all THREE directions. Don't just tape the obvious seams at the top and bottom. If it is a re-used box, re-tape the bottom seam too. AND don't just stop there -- continue that piece of tape ALL THE WAY AROUND the box. Then do the same in the other two directions, ALL THE WAY AROUND the box, each time.

Also, most boxes come pre-made with a seam on the side that nobody pays any attention to. Tape that too!

At the top and bottom, there should be no un-taped opening (which there will be if you just run tape down the open seam). Tape up every seam or opening.

Buy some tape -- buy a lot of tape. If you are going to waste money on anything in this process, waste it on tape!
Private Stamp Insurance Changes Everything
If you have a private stamp insurance policy, that completely changes some of the recommendations about shipment methods. If you are the family member of a deceased collector who had private insurance, I suggest that you consider keeping that insurance in force until the collection is sold. If you do have such insurance, contact me to discuss shipment methods, but always be sure to carefully read, understand, and follow the text of the insurance policy regarding shipping methods and value limits.

If you do have private stamp insurance and you are sending by Registered Mail, you will have to decide whether to declare a value or to not declare a value. Technically, all Registered Mail packages that contains items of value are supposed to have the value declared (for which you then have to pay a higher fee), even if you have your own private insurance and don't need the postal insurance. However, I suspect that few people declare a value (and thus few people pay the higher cost) unless they actually want the postal insurance coverage. On the other hand, I should point out that some people, even though they have private insurance, go ahead and declare a value and thus also have postal insurance coverage for a "belt and suspenders" approach.
Mail vs Parcel Companies Such As UPS
I generally recommend that most material be sent by Mail.

The exception could be bulky, lower-value material. In that case, I suggest UPS.

I have heard, but do not have personal experience, that while UPS may let you buy insurance on stamp shipments, they are very difficult to deal with if there is a claim for loss or damage, at least in regard to stamps.

I do not recommend FedEx because their terms of service specifically state that they will not accept stamps. I know it is very common to send stamps by FedEx, people just don't tell FedEx what is in the shipment (and you never should anyway!). However, if you do send by FedEx, even if you buy their insurance, a loss or damage claim will be denied because you were not supposed to send stamps by FedEx.

Our delivery address for parcel companies (NOT mail) is below. This is a business address with staff present during normal delivery hours.

   450 East Greensboro Chapel Hill Road
   Snow Camp, NC 27349

Never send postal mail to that address -- it may be returned to you.

When shipping anything, to anybody, via any parcel company, it is extremely important to specify "Adult Signature Required". The key word here is "signature", not adult. There are no children here. Without this, many parcel companies will simply "drop and run" which can result in loss or damage. This endorsement normally does not cost any more. Insist on it!
Express vs Registered vs Insured Mail vs Uninsured Mail vs UPS
Express Mail is rarely appropriate for shipping a stamp collection. I would only consider using Express Mail on individual items of very high value.

Registered Mail is most commonly recommended. There is no practical limit to the amount of insurance coverage you can have with Registered Mail. Registered Mail, however, is only available for the faster mail services (First Class, Priority, etc.) thus the costs add up. Registered Mail is NOT available for Standard Mail (Parcel Post) or Media Mail. Registered Mail is subject to less risk of loss or damage because a) it travels through the mail system separately and is accounted for at every change of possession and b) it often contains items other than financially valuable items and thus does not get stolen as often as Insured Mail.

Certified Mail does NOT provide any financial protection against loss or damage. The only time one would use Certified Mail to send stamps is either if a) it is covered under your private stamp insurance policy or b) you want to have a record of mailing and delivery, but you wish to take on the risk of loss.

Insured Mail is NOT recommended by me for "highly valuable" material. I would NOT suggest using Insured Mail for the main albums of a stamp collection or other core, valuable material. The reasons for this are quite simple: a) The amount of insurance can be deduced by a potential thief based on the amount of postage, the weight, and the to/from zip codes; and b) Insured Mail travels right along with all the rest of the mail. It can get lost or stolen as easily as any piece of advertising mail. If you are using Insured Mail, for cost reasons you may want to send it by Standard Mail, Insured. Because of how the postal rates are calculated, it may be nearly the same cost to send by Registered (with insurance) Priority Mail. Ask your postal clerk for a comparison of the costs.

Standard Mail is the new name for Parcel Post. This is appropriate for lower value, bulky material. Standard Mail can be Insured (but not Registered). Standard Mail (the old Parcel Post) used to be a lot cheaper than First Class or Priority Mail. However, as of 2013, most Standard Mail packages cost about as much as Priority Mail. Before using Standard Mail, ask for a cost comparison with Priority Mail or look it up on the postal rate calculator on www.usps.com. Also, if you are considering using Standard Mail, you may find it more convenient or cheaper to use UPS.

My general recommendation is to, if you have the knowledge, divide the material into the following groups:
  • Valuable stamp albums and any other material you know to be valuable I recommend be sent by Registered Mail with a declared insurance amount. Yes, it can get costly, but the peace of mind is worth it. Note the comments above about box size -- you can significantly reduce your cost by using boxes as large as you can tolerate (as long as they are strong enough for the contents).
     
  • Material that you know is not valuable, such as stockbooks and envelope boxes full of duplicates or large quantities of stamps, I would send either by Standard Mail (with insurance if you wish), or by UPS. There are collections that include rooms full of such lower-value material.
     
  • Books, publications, reference catalogs, etc., I recommend be sent by Media Mail. As noted above, discuss this material with me first. Some items are not worth the Media Mail postage to ship. Paying for insurance may or may not be appropriate (talk to me first). (Note: stamp albums do NOT qualify for Media Mail.) Media Mail may be opened by the post office for inspection and if found to contain non-qualifying material, will be charged postage due at the Priority Mail rate.) Media Mail will be cheaper than UPS or any other method.
Registered Mail and Brown Paper Tape
There is a stupid (I'm sorry, but it is) post office rule that Registered Mail has to be sealed with PAPER (the lick and stick stuff) tape on ALL joints. Their purpose in this is that the postal clerk needs to postmark every joint to "seal" the package for security (to be able to detect if somebody has opened it). Well, people send more valuable items by Express Mail and there is no such rule. Most other countries no longer have that rule (and their Registered Mail comes here).

But the point is that the post office (95% of the time) will not accept plastic tape on Registered Mail.

I have seen some postal clerks allow a brown plastic-like-but-looks-like-paper tape. But that depends upon the individual postal clerk. If you want to try to use something like that, I strongly suggest that you show it to the post office where you will do the mailing to get their 'okay' (and make note of the clerk's name so you can raise a stink if some other clerk says no).

Yes, the brown paper tape is obnoxious. Use a sponge to wet, but don't use too much moisture.

Alternatively, you can use other shipping methods, but sometimes Registered Mail is the best method for certain types of material. More on that below.
The Post Office's Dirty Little Secrets to Get Your Money
It has now been widely documented that postal clerks have been trained to avoid initially informing you of cheaper ways to send mail. If you walk into a post office to send a box, they may ask if you want to send it faster or cheaper and then offer you Express Mail vs Priority Mail (and not telling you about Standard Mail, or Media Mail if the contents qualifies).

Prior to 2013, newspaper investigative reports have stated that the clerks are told to NOT mention to you that Standard Mail is even available unless you specifically ask for it or say the magic words "Is there a cheaper method?" If you are sending books or items qualifying for Media Mail, you have to specifically ask; usually Media Mail pricing will not be voluntarily given to you. Starting in 2013, however, Standard Mail (Parcel Post) usually does not offer any significant savings.

Even then I have personally heard postal clerks spread the seeds of doubt by saying "well, it would be safer if...." or "if you really want it there by....".

Postal clerks have also been known to automatically tack on unnecessary services such as "Signature Confirmation" on a Registered package -- that is redundant. All Express, Registered, and Certified Mail has to be signed for.

However, starting around 2018, when separate Insured Mail "blue labels" were discontinued, Insured Mail no longer has to be signed for by the recipient. If you are sending by Insured Mail, DO request "Signature Confirmation".

One last tip: "Delivery Confirmation" is worse than useless. Delivery Confirmation is signed by the postal delivery person (the mail carrier) stating that he or she delivered it. Assuming that they really did deliver it (though mail theft used to be rare -- now "porch pirates have become a problem -- it was usually postal employees or contractors doing the stealing), without an analysis of the GPS in the mail carrier's signature device, there is absolutely nothing to prove that they delivered to the correct address! "Delivery Confirmation" is worthless and should be abolished. Because of the increased number of "porch pirates" stealing mail and packages, "Signature Confirmation" will require the mail carrier to either put the package in your hands or they will have to take it back to the post office. They won't be able to just leave it without a recipient signature.
Bind It Tight
Stamp albums, stock books, and boxes of stamps are subject to Murphy's Law. If not wrapped tight, stamps will fall out.

One can obtain super-size rubber bands at office supply stores and they work fine.

Never use tape to bind a book closed.

But there is an easier, cheaper way. Below I talk about putting material in plastic bags. Once in the bag use your wide plastic packing tape and tightly wrap it all the way around the book or box. That is quick and it works great.
Put These Fine Stamps in Trash Bags
Whether you use trash bags or dry-cleaner bags or just some handy sheet plastic, wrap everything in plastic before placing them in the shipping carton. In the case of stamp albums, stock books, and small boxes of stamps, you should probably then tightly wrap that plastic bag with your wide plastic packing tape to hold the book or box closed.

If there is one great sin in shipping stamp collections, it is not wrapping and binding albums, and then placing them in a carton filled with packing peanuts. I will be picking peanut bits out of the albums for weeks. I have seen valuable stamps significantly damaged when this has been done.
Label, Label, Label
Each container, plastic-wrapped object, etc., in the shipping carton should be clearly labeled with a "From and To" label bearing complete addresses and phone numbers.

Make up a "label" and make a bunch of photocopies of it. Then use your wide (clear) plastic packing tape to SECURELY attach a label to each object in the carton.

The purpose here is that if the carton breaks open in transit, say the airplane it is on crashes, the objects in the carton can be identified.

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