Here’s how postcards help Germans connect amid travel restrictions in Covid-19. The colorful cardboard rectangle fills almost the entire wall of Gesa Funke’s apartment just south of Berlin, piled high on corners and drawers – some from as far away as French Polynesia.
The 29-year-old student has been sending and collecting cards for years.
However, like most Germans, he found himself writing pen more often because of travel and other limitations during the coronavirus epidemic.
He said that it’s a little less effort than writing a letter, and it’s still good to accept something from someone, to communicate a little.
While many Germans have embraced digital technology during the genocide, others have turned to traditional means of communication to communicate with loved ones.
In December, the Deutsche Post said it had 11 percent more cards than in the same month last year “probably because of the corona and Christmas”.
Funke told AFP he had started sending several cards to his German friends during the outbreak, “friends I would have met in person but that is not possible yet”.
He continues to send lots to both his grandmothers, he said.
– Birthday wishes –
In all, last year, 120 million cardinals were sent, down from 147 million in 2019, according to the German post office.
However, the decline was less than expected, as exports were severely disrupted by the first wave of the epidemic.
Holidays – often the main reason for writing – have also become very steep due to strict travel restrictions.
But at the same time, there has been an increase in people sending cards for other reasons, according to the German MyPostcard app, which allows users to print their customized cards.
Back in the year 2019, the holiday note “wish you were here” was the most common type of card sent.
Last year, the birthdays took the lead as the most popular reason.
– New hobby –
In October, nearly 66 percent of respondents in MyPostcard’s YouGov survey said they sent cards regularly – compared to 57 percent who responded to a similar survey in 2019.
Funke is also a member of Postcrossing, which is an 800,000-member international postcard exchange project in 207 different countries.
With more than nine million, Germany has sent more cardinals than any other country under its jurisdiction since its inception 15 years ago.
People are likely to turn to the cardinals for the epidemic because they “have more time and want to try a new hobby they didn’t know before”, Funke suggests.
He adds saying that some may have gotten this hobby for the first time because they have traveled so far before and that is no longer possible, so they start writing cards to see something in the world.
According to the founder of Postcrossing Paulo Magalhaes, the number of postcards sent under the project dropped during the first wave of the epidemic due to the slow pace of the postal system but again in 2020.
Magalhaes said that he see this in the number of (new) users and the replacement postcards.