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  • Sending Letters in the Merch'

    I know many consider it to be old fashioned and obsolete, but corresponding through letter is something I'd still like to do whilst in the Merchant Navy whilst onboard. To me it's always seemed that corresponding through letter is much more personal than through e-mail. How easy is it to send letters from ports? Are there any specific catches or is it as simple as just posting it with an address?

    Thanks!

  • #2
    Re: Sending Letters in the Merch'

    Print the address in bold, capital letters, with UNITED KINGDOM in large letters, if you can find out what the local word for the UK is, put that on there as well. Then give it to the ship's agent when he comes on board, then say a prayer.
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    • #3
      Re: Sending Letters in the Merch'

      If the ship's agent is unwilling to help, then the Seaman's Church/Mission/Club is your best bet. They are in most ports in some guise.
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      • #4
        Re: Sending Letters in the Merch'

        Don't expect to receive incoming mail; as a cadet I got several letters from my parentals a month after I left the ship...
        '... English is about as pure as a cribhouse whore. We don't
        just borrow words; on occasion, English has pursued other languages
        down alleyways to beat them unconscious and rifle their pockets for
        new vocabulary.' - James Davis Nicoll

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        • #5
          Re: Sending Letters in the Merch'

          Can also be company dependant, sending is nrmally easy, give to captain to give to agent and it'll get home, often in with the captains DHL bag to the office.

          Outbound can vary, most companies have a central address you post to and they forward from there to the ship, again in the DHL bag. But as pointed out above it is traditional to get this mail and postcards after you get home...just home the parents dont move and send the new front door key to you
          Trust me I'm a Chief.

          Views expressed by me are mine and mine alone.
          Yes I work for the big blue canoe company.
          No I do not report things from here to them as they are quite able to come and read this stuff for themselves.


          Twitter:- @DeeChief

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          • #6
            Re: Sending Letters in the Merch'

            I believe RFA ships have a BFPO (British Forces Post Office) number for post.

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            • #7
              Re: Sending Letters in the Merch'

              Originally posted by kayak
              I believe RFA ships have a BFPO (British Forces Post Office) number for post.
              Correct. The form of address to send to an RFA would be:

              Cadet(X/E) Joseph Bloggs
              RFA Wild Rover
              BFPO 444

              Speed of service varies wildly depending on theatre. Around the UK and to overseas ports with a British military or naval presence it can be just a few days. If you're further afield, it can be weeks with bags of mail chasing you around the world six weeks behind.

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