You probably all know this: Coming home, seeing that there is something in your mailbox. The exciting feeling when you open your mail box. And then.. the disappointment because it was just another advertising flyer or a bill.
But sometimes you find something personal in your mailbox. A letter. Or a postcard. I am one of the persons who really loves to receive (and of course also to send) real handwritten letters and postcards. I have had pen pals for a long time already. I can’t remember when I started this but it has definitely become one of my hobbies.
Not all correspondences with pen pals were long lasting but I made some good friends and met some really interesting people. Over the time I have gained some experience with pen pal pages in the internet. I am still member of some and I decided to introduce those to you. This might make it easier for you if you decide to look for a pen pal yourself 🙂
Short notice: The better pen pal pages will be further down. And I am only writing about pages where you don’t have to pay.
This is an app for smartphones. I found it by accident and thought I could try it.. I was annoyed quite fast. This app has some good features. Really. But not for someone who is looking for snail mail pen pals.
You create a profile but the text you can write is very limited. You also have the option to post „stories“. These can be either written only or you can also post pictures, videos or audio recordings. It is a bit like Instagram only that all people on ePenpal can see the stories you post (if this is your setting).
There is a snail mail option but I have noticed that many people there are just looking for one-time exchange of post cards. So there have been some missunderstandings.
And then there is the option of sending messages. It’s like a mix of whatsapp and facebook messenger. And here’s also the point why it annoyed me so fast. I got tons of messages, all saying just „hi“. (with a few exceptions) Plus I don’t really like typing on my phone…
So, to put it in a nutshell: This app is good for people who like chatting on the phone and getting to know new people from all around the world this way. And for people who like to share photos with everyone. But not for people who are looking for snail mail exchange.
Mailfriends.us used to be quite good to find pen pals but unfortunately it is not really active anymore. At least not in the category of snail mail pen pals. The age group seems to be 40+ mostly by now, which is not really the age group I am looking for. Anyways. What is good about this page is that it is quite easy to use and it has different categories you can look for. You can find pen pals, e-mail pen pals, travelbuddies, language exchange, people for sports and activities and there is even an option for flirts and relationships.
Penpal-Gate is probably the pen pal community I have known the longest. I have found some pen pals there and I am still in contact with one of them (via facebook by now). But this page also doesn’t seem to be so active anymore. Or maybe I just became too old because the age group there seems to be mostly younger than 20.
This page has a forum and a chat. The search function is quite good and it is easy to use.
Snail Mail Pen Pals for Adults
Snail Mail Pen Pals for Adults is a page that promised exactly what I was looking for when I first registered there. Here almost all people are really also looking for snail mail exchange. This page doesn’t have a good search option, you can find your pen pals via the forum here. But, sadly, also this page is not that active anymore. But you can of course still find pen pals. Just maybe not as easy as some months ago.
I started using Interpals probably around the time I started using Penpal-Gate. I really like this page even though it sometimes also annoys me. Here you can find everything. It is basically a community, a bit like facebook but here it is easier to find friends from all over the world.
Interpals has a forum and a chat. The search option is very good and can be very detailed. As I said, you can find there anything you want. Snail mail pen pals, e-mail pen pals, language exchange, just friends to chat.
The only thing that annoys me here is similar to the one on ePenpal: I receive many messages saying only „hi“. I mostly ignore those. Because I wrote on my profile that I would ignore those and it is not my problem if people don’t read profiles before writing the person. 😉
Anyways. I can recommend this page.
Brieffreunde.de says to be international but I haven’t found any option to change the language yet, so it is only for German speakers. At least so far. Who knows, maybe they will translate it at some point?
I am quite new to this community but I really like it. It has the options of creating a very detailed profile, you could even write a blog there, but of course your profile does not have to be that detailed.
One thing I really like about the page is that you can join groups of interest. I joined one group saying something about looking for snail mail pen pals. And this way it was quite easy to find some good pen pals.
Apersphere is still quite new. I found an ad when I was visiting Penpal-Gate. But the community is growing. Through a post in the forum there I found some pen pals. But I think the main aim of this community is cultural exchange, language exchange and travel experiences. On your profile you have the option to mark all the places you have been to on a world map. Let’s see how this community develops 🙂
Last but not least, I would like to introduce some other concept to you. This is not about snail mail exchange in terms of long lasting friendship. This is about sending and receiving post cards without any obligations.
It is called Postcrossing. The idea is simple: Send a postcard, receive a postcard. After you have signed up and created a profile you can request up to 7 addresses. Next you have to send a post card to each of this address. You will get the profile of the people you are going to send a postcard to. Most of them have some postcard preferences listed on their profile. I always try to find them motives they have listed.
Along with the address you receive a code you have to put on the postcard. This way the receiver can register it as soon as he receives it. In order to receive a postcard yourself you have to have sent at least one postcard. You won’t get a post card from a person you have send one to. This is totally random.
I can really recmmend this page to anyone who likes to receive postcards from all over the world 🙂
I hope this entry was/is maybe somewhat helpful for those who are looking for snail mail exchange. If you have any questions feel free to contact me via the contact form or just leave a comment. 🙂