by Nick Anis
The other day I was in Costco and I noticed you can
get greeting cards and envelopes with your photo and very short message
for about $1.10 each including the cost of postage.
It's a good price and in quantity it goes down to about $.87 each.
But you have limited choices in terms of art and design, you have to address the cards yourself, and get them to the post
When I was at the mega computer show in Las Vegas,
COMDEX I came across an exciting new service from a startup company based
in Phoenix, Amazing Mail. This
allows you to upload any photograph or image (like a screen from your
computer) or choose from a library of pre-designed greeting cards, add
quite a large
personalized message and some personalized accents, and schedule the card to be
mailed to an addressee you specify automatically.
The beauty of this service is that you can be on
vacation somewhere, take some snap shots with your digital camera and go
online and upload the photo have it printed, mailed and delivered to your
friends or family before you even get back. And this great service costs
$.99 or less including postage. The
price drops to about $.79 in quantity.
I bought a block of cards so I can send them throughout the year.
I have programmed birthday and anniversary cards to
be sent for all my immediate family members and I've sent out a whole
batch of invitation and thank you cards.
I've also used the service to send pictures to friends who aren't
that computer savvy … because instead of going online to view the photo
they just go to their mailbox and there it is.
provides users with a free software tool, ez-pix for capturing screens.
There is also an easy to use Greeting Card Showcase with Birthday,
Anniversary, Invitations, Wedding, Thank You, Love, Hanukkah, Christmas,
Thanksgiving, Easter, Halloween, Mother's Day, Father's Day, and other
Special Occasions and Holidays.
You can make a post card in four easy steps and view
it online before you give it the final go ahead to be printed and mailed
on the date you specify. An AmazingMail.com
postcard measures 6 inches by 9 inches. According to the company your postcard is printed on a
state-of-the-art process-color printing press with real ink and coated
glossy stock like your typical postcard.
The print resolution is 800 dots per inch with 4 layers of ink
creating solid fields and vibrant colors.
The image side can be in color or black-and-white.
If you wish you can print text only (which you upload as 6 inche
by 9 inch image). The
colors will be as you specified except for the return address, delivery
address, and postal information, which will be in black ink due to postal
provides you with your own confidential address book and an easy to way to
choose who and when to mail cards to.
You are sent an email when your card is printed and mailed and you
can check the status of our account while online.
Amazing mail also offers integration with a FREE clip art service
which includes keyword searching. The
service is new and it's off to a good start.
Future improvements I would like to see include an ability to
modify an order than hasn't been printed and mailed yet, a longer message,
more control over the font and type size of the message, a larger
assortment in the greeting card gallery (although the gallery has quite a
nice assortment … what can I say I'm greedy), and a way to seamlessly
look up addresses and zip codes and capture them into your address book.
But improvements or not, it's a good service and I'm sold on it.
And at $1.10 a card (mailed) you will be two.
To try the service (they will give you a FREE card) point your
browser to http://www.amazingmail.com.
# # #
Nick Anis is a food, wine, and travel
and technology writer with over 24 books in print published by
McGraw-Hill, Random House, Bantam, Ziff-Davis, Tab, and others. Nick's
articles have appeared in The Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, West Coast
Media, The Family Publications Group, The Weekly News, and Travel-Watch.
His beats include food, travel, snow and waters sports, entertainment,
family recreation, consumer electronics, home improvement, and automotive.
He is responsible for the Restaurant Row Ethnic Dining Guide, co-published
by the Long Beach Press Telegram. Nick is an
accomplished downhill skier, PADI certified SCUBA diver, and when he's not
sitting on his butt goofing off, enjoys a variety of active recreation
including tennis, riding motorcycles, ATVs, wave runners, snow machines,
horses, skeet and trap shooting he's also taken a stab at riding camels,
donkeys, elephants, ostriches, lamas, dolphins, Reindeer, bulls,
mechanical bulls, and buffalo. Nick is a member (A
Secretary/Treasurer) of the International Food, Wine, and Travel Writers
Association (IFWTWA), a member of the North American Snow Sports
Journalist Association (NASJA), Computer Press Association, The Writer's
Guild, and listed in Books in Print, Media Map, and Press Access.
You can reach Nick at Editor@Travel-Watch.com.