There is a US Post office at the South Pole. It’s located at the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station. And today I received a postcard from there! Well, like the one from McMurdo Station it’s the one I sent there myself, asking to be sent to me postmarked. But I got more than that — they also added a Antarctica stamp, and their postmark is awesome! The travel time from NYC to the South Pole to St. Petersburg, Russia took just over 5 months.
The Amundsen–Scott South Pole Station is a United States scientific research station at the South Pole, the southernmost place on the Earth. It is at the only place on the land surface of the Earth where the sun is continuously up for six months and then continuously down for six months. (The only other such place is at the North Pole, on the sea ice in the middle of the Arctic Ocean.) During the summer the station population is typically around 150. Most personnel leave by the middle of February, leaving a few dozen (45 in 2015) “winter-overs”, mostly support staff plus a few scientists, who keep the station functional through the months of Antarctic night. Research at the station includes glaciology, geophysics, meteorology, upper atmosphere physics, astronomy, astrophysics, and biomedical studies.
My first, and so far the only postcard from Antarctica is from USA Antarctic Territory, from McMurdo Station.
The McMurdo Station is a United States Antarctic research center on the south tip of Ross Island. It is operated by the United States through the United States Antarctic Program. The station is the largest community in Antarctica, capable of supporting up to 1,258 residents, and serves as one of three United States Antarctic science facilities.
It is actually not very difficult to receive a postcard from Antarctica! The National Science Foundation has a procedure to support philately at a level not to interfere with the science mission. Here is what you need to do, to receive a postcard with McMurdo Station postmark:
- Get a hold of mint US stamp, that’s good for sending a postcard to wherever you are: domestic stamp if you’re in USA or one of US territories, or international for all other countries.
- Get an appropriate postcard, address it to yourself, and put the US stamp(s) you got in the first step.
- Place it in an envelope, and sent it to the following address:
Philatelic Mail Clerk
APO AP 96599-1035
Philatelic Mail Clerk
Wait for your postcard to arrive, now with McMurdo Station postmark. They will not add any text to it, so feel free to sign it as well 🙂
Travel times: I sent it from New York mid-September, and received it stamped in Russia mid-November.