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Book Exchange - how to do?

Hey everyone!

I have asked some users whether they want to change books with me and some accepted my offer. So now I asked myself, if it is a kind of convention or custom (?) to put a little present in the packet since some people said they rejoice at getting tea or bookmarks.
Can anyone help me? Is it like this (or at least in Germany?)
And what gift would you send to another bookcrosser?

Thank you for answering!
SophiaChrist

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Hey everyone!

I have asked some users whether they want to change books with me and some accepted my offer. So now I asked myself, if it is a kind of convention or custom (?) to put a little present in the packet since some people said they rejoice at getting tea or bookmarks.
Can anyone help me? Is it like this (or at least in Germany?)
And what gift would you send to another bookcrosser?

Thank you for answering!
SophiaChrist
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It's nice to add little extras to the package if you're mailing books - but only if it's permitted by the type of shipping you're using, and if the items themselves aren't on the prohibited list of the country they're going to. [Some countries have restrictions on specific types of books as well, so it's a good idea to check up on those things.]

When mailing within the US, the most inexpensive shipping is called "media mail", and is restricted to media only - books, CDs, DVDs, but no extras, including personal notes - so I only add extras to those packages if the book's small enough that the first-class postage is as cheap as the media-mail rate. For international mailings from the US, I seldom add anything but fancy bookmarks or postcards to international packages; we have no "surface rate" anymore, so international mailing is expensive, and adding bonus items can boost the already-high postage too much.

If one can afford the postage, and if the items aren't against customs-regulations in the target countries, it's lovely to add little gifts. Small items with a flavor of your own country are very nice - postcards, bookmarks, even postage stamps if the person you're mailing to collects them. [Using colorful stamps on your package can be a plus for the recipient too; if they don't collect stamps themselves they may know someone who does, and who'd love to see stamps from another country.]
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Hi SophiaChrist,

GoryDetails has covered just about all you need to know about enclosing 'goodies' with books; here are some links (all in German) which you may or may not know about on the postal options and rules in Germany:

The German equivalent of "media mail" (but just for books) is the "Büchersendung"; for posting books within Germany you can find:
- an overview at http://www.deutschepost.de/---/buechersendung_national.html
- what's allowed & what's not at http://www.deutschepost.de/---/so-funktioniert-s.html
- and FAQs at http://www.deutschepost.de/---/haeufige-fragen.html

Not every 'Büchersendung' is checked by the postal authorities for 'forbidden' goodies, but if you are unlucky and your book (complete with goodies) is checked, it will be not be delivered to the addressee. It will be sent back to you and you'll have to pay to post the book again.

For posting individual books from Germany to other countries, the worldwide letter rate is usually identical to the 'Presse und Buch International' Priority rate
( http://www.deutschepost.de/---/presse-buch-international.html ), is faster, and with letter post there are less restrictions on what you can enclose.

Have fun with your book exchanges, and if you need more information in German, feel free to ask in the German forum at http://www.bookcrossing.com/---/14 .

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