Postcards

04/09/2008

A postcard is intended for writing and mailing without an envelope and at a lower rate than a letter. Among the postcards there are postal cards which unlike regular postcards that require a stamp, have the postage pre-printed on them. While a postcard is usually printed by a private company, individual or organization, a postal card is issued by the relevant postal authority.

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Things to consider:

  • Size – Make sure it’s within the regional postal service postcard dimensions
  • Bleed – add bleed area
  • Resolution – use high resolution images.
  • Looks – make it visually appealing.
  • Pages – front and back

Size

The postcard size standards are usually taken from the postal service price rates list. The reason for this are the lower price rates for postcards that are within the regulation dimensions and can be mailed without an envelope.

Postcards dimension constraints
Region Postal service Min Size Max Size
USA USPS 88,9mm x 127mm (3.5″ x 5″) 107,95mm x 152,4mm (4.25″ x 6″)
UK Royal Mail 90mm x 140mm (3,543″ x 5,512″) 120mm x 235mm (4,724″ x 9,252″)

View more of the leading global postal services card & letter sizes here.

The most common size for postcards is 101,6mm x 152,4mm (4″ x 6″) but A5 and A6 sized postcards are also among the favorites. View more sizes at uprinting.com, postcard-size.com.

Note. The shape of the postcard must be rectangular, otherwise it does not qualify as a postcard and will be mailed in an envelope.

Bleed area

Add a bleed area. The standard bleed size can vary from one printing company to the other but generally is 3mm (0.125 inches). Read more about bleed here.

Color space

In order for the colors on the final printed product to look as close as possible to the colors you chose on your PC display, you should work in 4 color CMYK mode. RGB color space may print off-color, which may be unacceptable for the customer. Spot colors are OK if they can be converted to CMYK or are absolutely required for the design.

Image quality

Just like in most templates for printing purposes, the image placeholders should have high 300 DPI of resolution.

Content

The most common features of a web-to-print postcard template are:

  • Image fields
  • Front and back pages
  • Large text field
  • Multiline text field with auto font resizing

A sample CDR file can be downloaded from your Sample Stationery catalog (go to Summary page).

Other usefull articles on this subject

You can view some more guides and articles about designing postcards at:

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