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Thursday, December 18, 2014

UPU News : Posts expect to deliver more than 7 million letters to Santa this year

17.12.2014 - Santa remains a most popular addressee for children around the world.

Santa's postbox in Ireland

Posts worldwide, many with a long tradition in handling Santa’s mail, are expecting to receive more than seven million letters this year. 
Canada, where Santa's postal helpers replied to more than 1,480,000 letters in 2013, is expecting the number to increase this year. In Europe, La Poste France says it received a record 1,220,000 letters last year, and the expectations remain just as high for 2014. 
Letter volumes are constantly high in the United States, where Santa receives each year more than 1,000,000 letters, or in Germany, with about 645,000 letters on average. In Brazil, where the campaign “Papai Noel dos Correios” is celebrating 25 years in 2014, more than 1,000,000 letters are expected this year.
The letters to Santa are often the first letters written by children. In many cases, they are addressed to imaginary places, such “Santa’s cloud”, “Cold land” or “Star Avenue”. Posts use this time of the year to inform children about the importance of properly addressing letters to their favourite holiday figure. 
“Toys still dominate the Christmas wishes, but requests for clothes, pets or even brothers and sisters are increasing,” says Isabel Tavares of Correios Portugal. 
In Sweden, where Santa’s post office received about 22,000 letters last year, there is a similar pattern: “Santa receives letters from kids all over the world, many from Asia. They often send wishes for good fortune and good health rather than toys. The latter are more common for the European kids,” says Maria Ibsen of Swedish Post. 
Santa Claus has his own special stamp in Finland this year, while in Greece, Hellenic Post will circulate musical Christmas stamps.

Operation Santa in 2013

The number of letters received in 2013 by some of the postal operators speaks volumes: Australia (150,000) Belgium (76,500), Brazil (1,011,443), Canada (1,480,000), Germany (645,000), Finland (500,000), France (1,220,000), Greece (90,000), Ireland (125,000), Italy (170,000), Portugal (100,000), Russia (340,000), Spain (253,000), Sweden (22,000), Switzerland (18,386), United States (+1,000,000). 

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