Frequently Asked Questions
We present below our replies to some frequently asked questions and some not frequently asked! The most important idea to note is that we like to consider our clients as “friends-in-the-making” and treat them as we like to be treated when making online purchases ourselves.
We also welcome any additional questions you may have. Please use our Contact Us form. Or telephone us at: 787-687-6879.
Abbreviations – We use many standard philatelic abbreviations throughout the website. A detailed list is at the bottom of this FAQ section (click here to jump there).
Q: How do I log in? How do I create an account?
A: At the top right of every page is an account button. If you aren't logged in, the words beneath it will read "Log in". Click this to log in.
The page this brings you to will give you the options to log in or create a new account (circled in red in the image below).
Q: How do I log out?
A: At the top right of every page is an account button. If you're logged in, the words beneath it will read "Account". Click this to view the account page.
The page this brings you to will show you your account information and order history. It also contains the option to log out.
Note: It isn't necessary to log out unless you're using a public computer.
Q: Is your site secure?
A: Yes, we take security very seriously and have implemented industry-standard SSL encryption to protect your personal and payment information. We do not store any sensitive information such as credit card numbers on our servers, and we regularly update our security protocols to stay ahead of any potential threats. You can rest assured that your information is safe when you shop with us.
Q: Do you collect state sale tax on my purchases?
A: Generally, the answer is no! Although large, national retailers like Amazon.com and Walmart.com plus major sites with philatelic divisions like eBay and HipStamp collect sales tax on every sale, we are not required to do so.
Since we have a nexus only in North Carolina, we are not required to collect sales tax on orders from the other 49 States and 5 Territories. That means clients from the 49 States get what amounts to a discount on their eBay and Hip purchases equal to their state sales tax when they buy directly from the Stamps of the World site. The residents of the areas above should pay “Use Tax” on their out-of-state purchases.
We are a registered vendor in the state of North Carolina and are obligated to collect and remit NC sales tax to the NC Department of Revenue. To ease that tax burden on NC residents, we provide NC purchasers with a credit of 50% of their sales tax amount towards their next purchase. If you pay NC state sales tax, we will communicate with you about how this is handled.
Q: Who owns and manages www.FrankGeigerSOTW.com? Where is it based?
A: Frank P Geiger Sr is the owner and manager of the stamp business based in Pinehurst, North Carolina. Frank has been a stamp collector since 1951 and started as a professional philatelist since 1962 while in college. He has 60 years of actual experience.
Q: Surely, Frank Geiger Sr can’t be doing all the work himself. Who else is involved?
A: Besides Frank, we have two staff members: David handles all the computer and internet related issues and inputs as much of our inventory as possible in his “spare” time. Miss Akiara takes care of most of the Asian stamps as she lived in Japan for several years and understands Japanese well.
Q: Your website name: FrankGeigerSrStampsOfTheWorld is quite lengthy. Do you have a shorter name that can be used?
Q: There is a stamp business with a similar name and a similarly named owner also with a Pinehurst, NC address. What’s up with that?
A: Yes, there is. One needs to be very careful to distinguish Frank Geiger Sr (us) from Frank Geiger Jr (who rarely uses “Junior”) and, as far as we know, owns WorldStamps.com and FrankGeigerPhilatelists.com.
Q: How do I know that I will be treated fairly and honestly?
A: The two most important stamp-related organizations in the US are the American Philatelic Society (APS) for collectors and the American Stamp Dealers Association (ASDA) for dealers. These two groups have strict ethical standards, enforce them and respond to complaints from the general public. Frank has been a member in good standing of the APS since 1968 and has been awarded Life Member status. He has also been an ASDA member since 1974 in good standing. These memberships are your best guarantee that you will be treat fairly, honestly and ethically.
If you'd like to view what our clients have to say about us, here's a list of the 100 most recent reviews we've received on eBay (as of this writing).
Q: How long have you been in the stamp business? How much online experience do you have?
A: Frank Geiger Sr has been buying and selling stamps since 1951! He was amongst the first stamp dealers with online sales starting in May 2000. Since then, he has had over 3000 sales on one small site; he’s at 8,000+ on another site and 20,000+ on his original site. Plus, since the 1960’s, he’s been publishing printed price lists and made over 100,000 sales from them. All-in-all, that experience adds up to more retail philatelic business than probably 99% of all other dealers active today.
Q: What is Frank P. Geiger Senior’s background?
A: Frank P. Geiger Senior was given a modest stamp collection by an aunt in 1951. His curiosity about the world and its peoples plus his entrepreneurial spirit led him to a long-standing interest in buying and selling stamps even through college and 4 years of graduate school. Upon graduation, he officially started Frank Geiger Philatelists and has been a full-time stamp dealer since. One important note: please do not confuse Frank Geiger Sr. of Pinehurst with any other person with the "Frank Geiger" name involved with stamps whether in Pinehurst or not.
Q: So many dealers are hard to reach; impossible in some cases! What’s your philosophy about customer contact.
A: We love to hear from our clients! We’ve discussed sports especially golf (Pinehurst is known as the Home of American Golf); educational ideas especially STEM, world history and philosophy; politics (very carefully at first); and, of course, stamps and the philatelic world.
Q: I see that most of the stamps you offer are from the United States. What about the rest of the world?
A: Yes, we have between 5,000 and 10,000 United States listings on this site; about 5,000 Japan listings; and Vatican City complete.
Plus, we have large offerings of the United States Trust Territories (Marshall Islands, Micronesia and Palau), South Sudan (a country one may complete easily), Canada, United Nations, Canal Zone, France and Israel are next in the listing pipeline.
We are listing more Stamps of the World from other countries every week as time permits. Our new office is loaded with beautiful collections, weighty cartons, and binders stocked with stamps. Want intact collections? Just let us know what you would like.
If there are any countries you would like to see us list soon, just let us know and we’ll try to put them online next.
Q: What does shipping cost?
Q: How long does it take you to ship an order?
A: We pride ourselves on getting every order received shipped within 24 hours of receipt, as long as the Post Office is open. The only exceptions are those orders received on Saturday, which are sent on the next business day the PO is open and orders received during holiday or vacation periods. These periods are noted on the home page.
Q: Why are there no estimated transit times during checkout?
A: We don't offer time estimates because these have become increasingly unreliable in recent years. The Post Office quotes the following times for their services under “normal conditions,” but these should only be taken as very rough estimates and are totally beyond our control.
- First-Class Mail: 2 to 6 business days
- Priority Mail: 2 to 3 business days
- Priority Mail Express: 1 to 2 business days
Q: Do you ship to other countries?
A: If you do not have a USA zip code, please contact us before placing an order to discuss.
Q: Can I display the prices in my local currency?
A: Yes. Scroll down to the very bottom of any page (including this page) and you'll find a box on the bottom left which says "Choose Your Currency". Click this box to choose the currency you prefer.
Q: Why do some of your USA offers emphasize that the stamps are “genuine”?
A: Unfortunately, there has been a recent surge of fake, counterfeit and bogus US “stamps” offered on virtually every general e-commerce site including Facebook. These offers are mainly Forevers, but recent stamps of all values are also popular with counterfeiters. If you see Forever stamps offered well below face value, for example a coil roll of 100 with a face value $60, priced at $40 or even less, those stamps are 99.99% guaranteed to be fake. The same comment applies to Additional Ounce, Priority Mail and Express stamps. Using them on the mail is a crime as their use violates federal law and defrauds the Post Office (which already has enough financial problems).
The stamps we sell are 100% genuine.
PLEASE NOTE: Collecting philatelic fakes (so marked) is legitimate and a very interesting field these days.
Q: I’ve heard Forever stamps have been faked. Is that true?
A: Yes, sadly, it is true. The first counterfeit Forever stamp was discovered around 2015. Since then, the number of counterfeit Forevers has proliferated. In the last few years, virtually every Forever has been faked within a month of its issuance.
Luckily, most of the fakes do not have the UV tagging that genuine stamps have, so it is relatively easy for knowledgeable collectors and dealers to identify them. The gigantic problem is that the general public knows nothing about UV coatings and goes merrily about enriching counterfeiters by buying the fakes by the thousands. If you look at general interest websites, most of which now have Forever stamps offered on them, you will see Forevers offered at about $30 per 100 stamps (which have a face value of $63 today). Genuine stamps are simply not sold at that rate!
You can given find them on eBay! The stamps that we offer are from original stock and guaranteed genuine. The Scott Specialized Catalogue even has a growing section of Postal Counterfeits with precise details of the characteristics of the fakes.
Since the fakes have philatelic interest, we do offer some on this site clearly identified as “FAKE” on the reverse.
Q: Are the stamps stored in a clean environment?
A: All stamps are stored in a smoke-free and clean office. We try to keep our cats and dogs out of the office but some days they do sneak in to enjoy a nap on the floor of our sunny office.
Q: I have seen some listings with ASK or RESERVE in the price column but without an “Add to Cart” button. What’s that all about?
A: “ASK” indicates items which have fluctuating prices that can vary over time. ASK indicates that you should email or telephone us to discuss the item.
“RESERVE” indicates an item which is not currently in stock but is expected. This situation most often applies to Country Year Sets which can be reserved over a year in advance. Please email us with your RESERVE request which is the best way to assure that you will be notified when the item has arrived.
Q: I like to keep my collections up to date. Can I count on you to offer the latest stamps?
A: Certainly, we stock New Issues from a variety of countries and expand this list as needed. You may reserve the YEAR SETS offered on our individual country lists which will convey your wishes to us. Many countries, however, have made their new stamps much harder to get than previously. We’ll go far out of our way to get them for our steady clients.
Q: I collect according to the Mystic Album format. Can you assist me with stamps that fit the Mystic Album format? (Added by the editor: and what about White Ace formats?)
A: ABSOLUTELY! Please contact us to discuss what you need. Occasionally, there might be an additional cost.
Q: Do you offer installment or time payments?
A: Yes, we certainly do. Please email or telephone us with what stamps or collections you would like to have and the arrangements you would like to make. Orders over $100 may be paid for in installments. We have many clients who have bought large collections or scarce stamps as high as $1000 or even more with monthly or bimonthly payments. These clients are amazed how quickly the time goes and so proud to own stamps that they thought they could never have in their collections.
Q: How do I make the font larger?
A: You can zoom your browser view in and out by pressing the + and - keys while holding the Ctrl key (⌘ key on Apple computers). Press Ctrl and 0 (zero) at the same time to reset the zoom level. Please be aware that if your zoom level is too high, some aspects of the web page might not display correctly.
Q: How do I bookmark the site?
A: Click the outlined star to the right of your address bar (See the image below). You can then choose to where to save the bookmark. If the star is already filled in, the site is already bookmarked.
Q: I see a group of initials on the upper right side of the website, what do they mean?
A: These are the philatelic associations and societies of which Frank P Geiger Sr is a member.
APS-Life = American Philatelic Society. He's been a member since 1968 and awarded the designation of "Life Member".
ASDA = American Stamp Dealers Association member for over 40 years.
USSS = United States Stamp Society
ISJP = International Society for Japanese Philately
VPS = Vatican Philatelic Society
RPSS = Ryukyu Philatelic Specialist Society
Frequently Used Abbreviations
WAG = Water-activated Gum S-A or SA = Self-adhesive Gum
NGAI = No Gum As Issued (the stamp was intentionally issued without Gum)
INVISIBLE GUM = In the 1980’s the United States started issuing definitive stamps often with “invisible gum” which some collectors mistake for a stamp which has no gum. There is certainly gum on the stamp on the stamp which is best demonstrated by putting a drop of moisture on a piece of margin. Doing that on the stamp itself is not advised.
DC = Die Cut
BK = Booklet; BLK = Block; SH = Sheet; M/S = MiniSheet; CL = Coil. These are often followed by a number which indicates how many stamps are in the indicated format.
PNC = Plate Number Coil - usually followed by the number of stamps which compose the PNC. The number can range from 3 to 21.
PB = Plate Block - often followed by the number of stamps which compose which compose the PB. The number can range from 4 stamps to 20. A stamp can have Plate Blocks of several sizes and formats.
ex = from - for example ex-BK means from a Booklet
UL = Upper Left; UR = Upper Right; LL = Lower Left; LR=Lower Right; STR = Strip
FCM = First Class Mail
NH = Never Hinged or for our British friends = Unmounted Mint
LH = Light Hinged; H = Hinged; HR = Hinge Remnant
OG = Original Gum; RG = Regummed; NG = No Gum; U = Used
Tall = A coil stamp that has backing paper that is Taller (and usually Lower) than the stamp itself
If you see an abbreviation you are not familiar with, please call or email for an explanation.