Bhutan’s postage stamps remain world-renowned in the philatelic community

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The first post office landed at the border town of Phuentsholing on 10th October 1962. Bhutanese postage stamps play an important role in historical preservation.

Stamps play a significant role in recording a country's way of life, rich culture and achievements. Bhutan issued the very first postage stamps in 1962. Since then, stamps have been the little ambassadors of the country.

Back then, Bhutan did not have any systematic mail delivery system. Mail runners were the ones who delivered official mails until 1955. Mail exchanges within Bhutan and India were transported through a unique mode of transport system using porters, mules, and motors. Notwithstanding the simplicity in its daily operation and the hardships posed by the rugged terrains and extreme climatic conditions during winter, it was an efficient setup. It contributed to the growth of the nation and enhanced development, especially in the rural areas.

1962 was also the year where Bhutan began to emerge from its self-imposed isolation. The introduction of roads invited more significant economic development activities and ease of mail deliveries. As a result of development, a Post and Telegraph Department, presently known as Bhutan Post was established under the Ministry of Communications.

The first post office landed at the border town of Phuentsholing on 10th October 1962. Later, it was incorporated with the Bhutan Postal Corporation Ltd with its trade name Bhutan Post on 1st October 1996.

The increased developmental activities in the country left Bhutan requiring more funds. Unfortunately, the World Bank denied a credit request from Bhutan then. To help raise funds for the country, the late Burt Todd from Pittsburgh had an artist to design the stamps and thus birth the first international postage stamps for Bhutan in 1962. Todd was an American entrepreneur and a good friend of the Bhutan's Royal Family. He was significant in establishing a postage stamp program in the country.

Todd produced the world’s first three dimensional stamps, and introduced the world's first 'Talking Stamps' - one of the smallest vinyl records in the world. The stamps were not only helping to generate revenue for balanced regional development in the country but it also played a bigger role as a symbol of sovereignty. It marks the beginning of Bhutan’s spotlight in the international community.
A series of philatelic firsts: circular coin stamps made of foil (1966); 3D stamps (1967); silk stamps (1969); and CD-ROM stamp (2008). Todd hired artists and had stamps manufactured in China, Japan, Indonesia, Spain and Italy. (Courtesy of Peter Bilak)

Butterfly Stamps 

Many things have changed in our country and our postage stamps play an important role in historical preservation.

The Bhutan Postal Museum opened in 1993 in Thimphu is one of the major attractions in town. It is a must-visit attraction for the tourists as well. The museum preserves the history of the development of the communication, transportation, and postal service in Bhutan.

At the museum, aside from purchasing Bhutanese stamps, you can also create your own personalized stamps!

Bhutan postage stamps enjoy a variety of national themes, international themes, and commemorative themes. Some of the local themes include Bhutanese architectures, Buddhist heritage, Bhutan postal runners, Bhutan wildlife, and sports.

Today, the Bhutan Post network consists of 43 outlets, including 4 General Post Offices and 39 Post Offices. Bhutan postage has made an international name for itself issuing exotic postage stamps featuring its rich traditions and cultures that have been preserved for many years through the wisdom and foresights of our kings.



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