Spend some time researching the values of postcards. It's a good use of time to browse through postcards for sale on auction sites such as eBay. Doing this will give you an idea of what's available as well as giving you an idea of the prices the postcards are worth and what you can expect to pay for them. However, at this stage don't get hung up on high values or you won't develop your own style and taste. Instead, focus on buying what you like for now and developing your own theme. Once you feel more confident that this is the hobby of choice for you and that you want to spend more money on it, then you can get serious about spending more money on particular types of postcards. Until then, just enjoy the thrill of adding to your collection for very low prices!
The places for finding postcards are many and varied but the sources will be determined by how you have narrowed down your collection criteria. For example, if you're not fussed about the age, quality or provenance of the postcard, you'll find postcards literally everywhere you go from newspaper stands on the street to your grandma's attic. It gets more complicated the more you narrow down your interests and the more you seek older, antique postcards but there are still many avenues for finding them even then. In particular, the places you're likely to find postcards include:
>Stores that sell magazines, newspapers, stationery, candies, etc. will often carry modern, current postcards. These will usually be souvenir postcards aimed at tourists but you never know what you mind find, so be sure to look wherever you are.
>Check out truck stops, gas stations, department stores, souvenir stores, motel lobbies, anywhere that is heavily touristed. Any place associated with tourists, travelers, traveling etc. will probably have current, modern postcards.Many museums, art galleries, zoos, national parks, theme parks, science centers, aquariums, space observatories, and other display, learning and entertainment areas often carry modern, current postcards.
>Look online for a very wide variety of postcards both new and old to antique. Auction sites, antique sites and postcard seller sites will provide you with a wide array of choices.
>Visit a postcard trade show. Here you'll find nothing but postcards!
>Visit antique stores, flea markets, garage and yard sales, secondhand bookstores and other similar stores for older postcards. Auction houses may also sell postcards, and if you're after someone's existing collection, an auction house or an art or vintage collectibles auction are good places to start.
>Ask family members for old, unwanted postcards and go through boxes of stored papers in the attic to see if anyone has stored any over the years that have been sent to them or that they've collected on trips away.Ask anyone you know who travels or is going on vacation to send you home at least one postcard. This can be a lovely way to treasure their words as well as the postcard.
>For a beginner collector, bulk lot purchases of postcards can be a lot of fun. You never know what you might get in such a mix but it'll be fun rummaging through it and it might spark more creative ideas for how to put together your postcard collection.
Taken from an article at http://www.wikihow.com/Collect-Postcards.
Here is an interesting story about a postcard that arrived at the wrong house a half century late: http://tinyurl.com/89ff8hu