When Canada Post rolled out a new action plan, it made sense for them to pull out the permanent-rate stamps during the approval process, but it has also created a boon for collectors of modern stamps. As Ian Robertson points out in the final instalment of his year-end wrap, published in this issue, it has created a handful of new definitive stamps, mostly with short press-runs to match their three-month lifetime.
The corporation also set smaller issue sizes for commemorative stamps without the P mark, since they will also only be on sale for a few months. As an added bonus, Canada Post has also announced a new $1 definitive, and a make-up rate stamp of 22-cents. I expect the make-up rate will see limited use. Now, while pretty much all of these stamps can be obtained in Mint just by making a phone call, or heading down to the local post office, some of these stamps may turn out to be a bit of a challenge to find postally used a few years from now. Now I am sure that present-day collectors who are interested in modern stamps will be able to buy and mail some stamps for themselves. I mean you could even mail yourself a stamp to get a copy, but for the most part, Canadians will not use these stamps.
I base that assumption on Canada Post’s claim that the average Canadian buys just a few stamps a year, and these stamps will only be on sale for three months.
Now, I don’t recommend speculating on these stamps. I expect that supply will be sufficient to meet demand for years. I do think that tracking them down in postally used, could be one of those collecting challenges that will take more time than money. Another interesting possibility is that kiosks, which were tested for a few months a year ago, may be used again as a way to sell postage.
If that happens, kiosk collectors, who assumed they could define a complete collection based on the trial period, may have to redefine their collecting goals and objectives. On top of all of this, postal historians and postmark collectors will have their own challenges as more local cancels vanish in the name of centralized sorting. I am sure Canada Post was only thinking about the bottom line, but it looks like 2014 will be an interesting year for collectors.