Shipping Sports Cards in a Plain White Envelope - The Right Way

BuyMyCards.Net Does Not recommend shipping cards in P.W.E (plain white envelope)

However we do agree that the practice happens quite often! 

If you intend to ship cards in this manner please follow the instruction below as best you can, and PLEASE inform potential buyer's in your listing's. 

(If at anytime, any BuyMyCards user charges a seller for bubble mailer shipping and the buyer receives a P.W.E The seller will be suspended without delay!!!!

Your welcome to use those types of practices on eBay or Sportlots NOT HERE!!!  


Basic Guidelines

  • I would never ship a card, no matter the value, in a PWE without the buyer/trader knowing I was. You look bad (as you should), when someone spends $2 on a padded mailer and priority shipping then they get a PWE in the mail.
  • I generally don’t do a PWE for anything valued over $10. I have yet to have a problem with a PWE but would not want to have to refund someone due to a USPS machine having a bad day or a buyer scamming me by saying it was not delivered.
  • The biggest enemy of the mighty PWE is the weather! It is just paper after all, if it's pouring raining don’t just drop the envelope in one of the blue boxes. I always take mine inside the post office or hand them off to my mail lady when she comes around.

Supplies

Envelopes!

envelopes
We’re off to a good start here. Grab yourself some invitation sized envelopes, not those #9 deals. I’ve gotten cards in just penny sleeves thrown in a #9 which of course slid all around the envelope for a few days and it seems the machines do not appreciate it when they don’t have a uniform thickness.


8.5”x11” Letter Sized Printer Paper

Nothing special here either. Grab some stacks from the office supply closet, or the store if you appreciate having a job.

Semi Rigid CardSavers

People usually hate these things and for good reason. They are pretty ugly and strangely tall. But they work perfectly for PWE shipping. They are lighter, fit the invitation sized envelopes better and are flexible enough to not tick off the nice lady at the USPS counter. However they will still protect your cards. There are a few different versions of these too, I have a box of 1's here. I'm fairly certain the 2's will work fine for our needs also.

cardsaver

Penny Sleeves

Every collector should have a truck load or two of these. Dirt cheap and keeps your nice cards from getting banged up. Order yourself a truckload if you don't have any.

Stamps

Gotta pay the man. With this method shipping 1 card usually comes in under half an oz. One stamp will pay for up to 1oz of shipping. The most I’ll ship this way are 4 cards and it comes right in at a solid ounce on my scale. I have had thicker cards that started making me nervous and I have thrown another stamp on. Currently a First Class stamp will cost you .49c, each additional ounce is .21c on top.

Since we’re talking about weighing stuff, you should probably get a postage scale. If you do much of any selling online, it will save you money and headaches in no time.

Tape

Always good to tape the top of you toploaders or cardsaver so your cards don’t go spilling out everywhere in the envelope. With the cardsavers you actually probably don’t need tape because they are really snug to the card but it doesn’t hurt.

Tip: If your ever taping the top of a toploader for any reason, put a penny sleeve over the top and then tape it down. This keeps anything like the card coming out of its penny sleeve and then getting stuck to the tape.

Actually Shipping Cards

First thing first is get your cards in some penny sleeves if you haven’t already.

I’ll put up to 2 cards in a semi rigid, they fit snug as a bug. Just be careful loading these especially if your not used to them, they can be tricky sometimes due to how tight they can be. Don’t force it and bend the card in half or anything crazy here.

Put some tape on that bad boy for extra security and we’re looking good. I usually utilize normal scotch tape or packing tape for this but the masking tape shows better for visual purposes.



Now here you have your standard issue 8.5”x11” Letter sized printer paper. Print a logo and information for your eBay store on it if you want to be a little extra fancy. I know I do.



Fold it length and width wise, keeping your printed stuff on the outside if you opted for the fancy option. Go ahead and write a little hand written note on here to say thanks to your customers too.



Now open your paper up and put your cardsaver or two in your nice little protective paper wrapper. While your in there, grab the tape and secure them to your little paper wrapper. For extra security and all.



Fold that thing back up and look at this, fits right in that envelope like it was made for it. Probably because it was made for it or something



Go ahead and seal up that PWE. Just write out your addresses or be extra super fancy and grab a thermal printer for address labels. You can hire/force your family and friends to help out and these just fly by.



And finally check out the thickness we are working with. Just around the height of two nickels. And best of all, the whole envelope is nearly uniform in thickness. No edges to get snagged in a machine here folks.

If this guide saves even 1 card from being needlessly murdered at the hands of the USPS then I will see it as a success and perfectly productive way to spend my evening writing this.