Postage Stamp: Types.

    Airmail stamp — for payment of airmail service. The term "airmail" or an equivalent is usually printed on special airmail stamps. Airmail stamps typically depict images of airplanes and/or famous pilots and were used when airmail was a special type of mail delivery separate from mail delivered by train, ship or automobile. Aside from mail with local destinations, today almost all other mail is transported by aircraft and thus airmail is now the standard method of delivery.

Scott has a separate category and listing for U.S. Airmail Postage. Prior to 1940, Scotts Catalogue did not have a special designation for airmail stamps.[51] The various major stamp catalogs have different numbering systems and may not always list airmail stamps the same way.


Booklet stamp — stamps produced and issued in booklet format.
    Carrier's stamp.
   Certified mail stamp.
    Coil stamps — tear-off stamps issued individually in a vending machine, or purchased in a roll.
    Commemorative stamp — a stamp that is issued for a limited time to commemorate a person or event. Anniversaries of birthdays and historical events are among the most common examples.
    Computer vended postage — advanced secure postage that uses information-based indicia (IBI) technology. IBI uses a two-dimensional bar code (Datamatrix or PDF417) to encode the originating address, date of mailing, postage and a digital signature to verify the stamp.
    Customised stamp — a stamp on which the image can be chosen by the purchaser by sending in a photograph or by use of the computer. Some are not true stamps but technically meter labels.

    Definitive stamps — stamps for everyday postage and are usually produced to meet current postal rates. They often have less appealing designs than commemoratives, though there are notable exceptions.[53] The same design may be used for many years. The use of the same design over an extended period may lead to unintended color varieties. This may make them just as interesting to philatelists as are commemoratives. A good example would be the US 1903 regular issues, their designs being very picturesque and ornamental.[53] Definitive stamps are often issued in a series of stamps with different denominations.
   Express mail stamp / special delivery stamp.
    Late fee stamp — issued to show payment of a fee to allow inclusion of a letter or package in the outgoing dispatch although it has been turned in after the cut-off time.
    Local post stamps — used on mail in a local post; a postal service that operates only within a limited geographical area, typically a city or a single transportation route. Some local posts have been operated by governments, while others, known as private local posts, have been operated by for-profit companies.
    Military stamp — stamp for a country’s armed forces, usually using a special postal system.
    Minisheet — a commemorative issue smaller than a regular full sheet of stamps, but with more than one stamp. Minisheets often contain a number of different stamps, and often having a decorative border. See also souvenir sheets.


    Newspaper stamp — used to pay the cost of mailing newspapers and other periodicals.
    Official mail stamp — issued for use by the government or a government agency.
    Occupation stamp — a stamp for use by an occupying army or by the occupying army or authorities for use by civilians
    Non-denominated postage — postage stamp that remains valid even after the price has risen. Also known as a permanent or "forever" stamp.
    Overprint - A regularly issued stamp, such as a commemorative or a definitive issue, that has been changed after issuance by "printing over" some part of the stamp. Denominations can be changed in this manner.
    Perforated stamps — while this term usually refers to perforations around a stamp to divide a sheet into individual stamps, it can also be used for stamps perforated across the middle with letters or a pattern or monogram, which are known as "perfins." These modified stamps are usually purchased by corporations to guard against theft by employees.
    Personalised stamps — allow the user to add his or her own image.
    Pneumatic post stamps — for mail sent using pressurized air tubes, only produced in Italy.
   Postage currency postage stamps used as currency rather than as postage
    Postage due — a stamp showing that the full postage has not been paid, and indicating the amount owed. The United States Post Office Department has issued "parcel post postage due" stamps.

    Postal tax — a stamp indicating that a tax above the postage rate required for sending letters has been paid. This is often mandatory on mail issued on a particular day or for a few days.
    Self-adhesive stamp — not requiring moisture to stick. Self-sticking.
    Semi-postal / charity stamp — a stamp with an additional charge for charity. The use of semi-postal stamps is at the option of the purchaser. Countries such as Belgium and Switzerland that often use charitable fund-raising design stamps that are desirable for collectors.
    Souvenir sheet — a commemorative issue in large format valid for postage often containing a perforated or imperforate stamp as part of its design. See also minisheet.
    Specimen stamp — sent to postmasters and postal administrations so that they are able to identify valid stamps and to avoid forgeries.
    Test stamp — a label not valid for postage, used by postal authorities to test sorting and cancelling machines or machines that can detect a stamp on an envelope. May also be known as dummy or training stamps.
    Variable value stamps - dispensed by machines that print the cost of the postage at the time the stamp is dispensed.
    War tax stamp — A variation on the postal tax stamp to defray the cost of war.
    Water-activated stamp — for many years, water-activated stamps were the only type available, so this term entered into use with the advent of self-adhesive stamps. The adhesive or gum on a water-activated stamp must be moistened (usually by licking, thus the stamps are also known as "lick and stick").

Apart from these, there are also Revenue (used to collect taxes or fees on items such as documents, tobacco, alcoholic drinks, hunting licenses and medicines) and Telegraph stamps (for sending telegrams), which fall in a separate category from postage stamps.


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