A postmark is an inked rubber stamp, with an imprint that indicates the date and place. A postal worker will press the postmark onto your letter to show the stamp has been used for postage. The date on the postmark records where and when the item enters the mail system.

Postmarks are just as unique and fascinating as stamps themselves. Take a look at some of our latest ones, and learn how to perfectly place postmark ink onto your collectable items.

Latest first day of issue postmarks

Christmas Island Turtles
Issue date: 10 August 2021

Full STEAM ahead!
Stamp Collecting Month 2021
Issue date: 3 August 2021

Australian Native Bonsai
Issue date: 27 July 2021

Norfolk Island: Museum: Maritime Models
Issue date: 13 July 2021

Australia’s Volcanic Past
Issue date: 13 July 2021

Australian Contemporary Sculpture
Issue date: 6 July 2021

Ticket To Tokyo
Issue date: 6 July 2021

Norfolk Island: Land Snails
Issue date: 22 June 2021

Doves and Pigeons
Issue date: 1 June 2021

Cocos (Keeling) Islands: Manta Ray
Issue date: 18 May 2021

Migratory Shorebirds
Issue date: 18 May 2021

National Heritage Australia
Issue date: 10 May 2021

Lest We Forget
Issue date: 13 April 2021

Rotary Australia: 100 Years
Issue date: 6 April 2021

Australian Legends of Cricket
Issue date: 26 March 2021

Holden: Australian Icon
Issue date: 22 March 2021

HMVS Cerberus: 150 Years
Issue date: 22 March 2021

AAT: Arts Fellowship
Issue date: 16 March 2021

Edith Cowan: First Woman in Parliament
Issue date: 2 March 2021

Ramsar Wetlands
Issue date: 22 February 2021

Frontline Heroes
Issue date: 16 February 2021

Royal Australian Air Force Centenary
Issue date: 9 February 2021

Norfolk Island: Lizards
Issue date: 2 February 2021

Memorable Moments
Issue date: 25 January 2021

Christmas Island Year of the Ox 2021
Issue date: 8 January 2021

Latest temporary and permanent postmarks

First day of use: 1 August 2021
Post Office: Busselton WA 6280
Type: Temporary pictorial
Postmark text: Ballaarat engine 150 years | Busselton WA 6280
Pictorial elements: Line drawing of Ballaarat engine

First day of use: 13 July 2021
Post Office: Derrinallum Vic 3325
Type: Permanent pictorial
Postmark text: Mount Elephant | Derrinallum Vic 3325
Pictorial elements: Mount Elephant outline

First day of use: 1 June 2021
Post Office: Flinders University Post Office SA 5042
Type: Permanent pictorial
Postmark text: Matthew Flinders | Flinders University SA 5042
Pictorial elements: Matthew Flinders bust with ship

First day of use: 31 May 2021
Post Office: St Agnes SA 5097
Type: Permanent pictorial
Postmark text: St Agnes SA 5097 | St Agnes Winery
Pictorial elements: St Agnes Winery line drawing

First day of use: 31 May 2021
Post Office: Campbell Town TAS 7210
Type: Temporary pictorial
Postmark text: Campbell Town TAS 7210 | Celebrating 200 Years
Pictorial elements: Bridge outline

First day of use: 29 May 2021
Post Office: Melbourne VIC 3000
Type: Temporary pictorial
Postmark text: Melbourne VIC 3000 | Dandenong Philatelic Society | 1971-2021 | 29 May 2021
Pictorial elements: Gummed stamp outline

First day of use: 10 May 2021
Post Office: Strahan TAS 7468
Type: Permanent pictorial
Postmark text: Strahan TAS 7468
Pictorial elements: Post office outline

First day of use: 1 May 2021
Post Office: Ross TAS 7209
Type: Permanent pictorial
Postmark text: Ross TAS 7209
Pictorial elements: Bridge outline

First day of use: 1 May 2021
Post Office: Woomera SA 5720
Type: Permanent pictorial
Postmark text: Woomera SA 5720
Pictorial elements: Rocket and satellite nose cone

 

First day of use: 1 May 2021
Post Office: Maitland NSW 2320
Type: Permanent pictorial
Postmark text: The Hub of the Hunter | Maitland NSW 2320
Pictorial elements: Maitland post office

First day of use: 1 May 2021
Post Office: Perth Tas 7300
Type: Permanent pictorial
Postmark text: Pertgh TAS 7300
Pictorial elements: Two boys fishing by a riverside

 

First day of use: 1 October 2020
Post Office: Davis Station, AAT
Type: First Day of Issue
Postmark text: First Day of Issue | A.N.A.R.E. | Davis Station
Pictorial elements: Station building

First day of use: 1 October 2020
Post Office: Davis Station, AAT
Type: Permanent pictorial
Postmark text: Australian National Antarctic Research Expeditions | Davis Station
Pictorial elements: Station building

First day of use: 1 October 2020
Post Office: Mawson Station, AAT
Type: First Day of Issue
Postmark text: First Day of Issue | A.N.A.R.E. | Mawson Station
Pictorial elements: Igloos

First day of use: 1 October 2020
Post Office: Mawson Station, AAT
Type: Permanent postmark
Postmark text: Australian National Antarctic Research Expeditions | Mawson Station
Pictorial elements: Igloos

First day of use: 1 October 2020
Post Office: Casey Station, AAT
Type: First Day of Issue
Postmark text: First Day of Issue | A.N.A.R.E. | Casey Station
Pictorial elements: Seals

First day of use: 1 October 2020
Post Office: Casey Station, AAT
Type: Permanent postmark
Postmark text: Australian National Antarctic Research Expeditions | Casey Station
Pictorial elements: Seals

First day of use: 1 October 2020
Post Office: Macquarie Island Station, AAT
Type: First Day of Issue
Postmark text: First Day of Issue | A.N.A.R.E. | Macquarie Island Station
Pictorial elements: Penguins

First day of use: 1 October 2020
Post Office: Macquarie Island Station, AAT
Type: Permanent postmark
Postmark text: Australian National Antarctic Research Expeditions | Macquarie Island Station
Pictorial elements: Penguins

Latest stamp show postmarks

First day of use: 31 October 2021
Show: Perth Stamp and Coin Show 2021
Type: Stamp Show temporary postmark
Postmark text: Perth | 31 October 2021 | WA 6000
Pictorial elements: Black swan

First day of use: 30 October 2021
Show: Perth Stamp and Coin Show 2021
Type: Stamp Show temporary postmark
Postmark text: Perth | 30 October 2021 | WA 6000
Pictorial elements: Black swan

First day of use: 29 October 2021
Show: Perth Stamp and Coin Show 2021
Type: Stamp Show temporary postmark
Postmark text: Perth | 29 October 2021 | WA 6000
Pictorial elements: Black swan

The four types of postmarks

National First Day of Issue

Used to commemorate the release of a new stamp on a national level. The locality name is chosen for its link to the stamp issue.

Permanent Pictorial

Reflecting something distinctive to the locality, such as penguins for the town of Penguin in Tasmania or a lighthouse if one is prominent in the area.

Temporary 

These postmarks are used on either single days or consecutive days commemorating a special event.

Individual location

Postmarks associated with a historical or geographical reflection of the local area but not necessarily pictorial and can be used to cancel first day of issue stamps only.

Applying a postmark

If you need a postmark applied to your philatelic item, head to your local Post Office. Only authorised Australia Post staff can apply postmarks. Make sure you’re getting the right kind of postmark applied. You’ll want a national postmark on a first day cover, the correct commemorative postmark for a special occasion stamp, and so on.

Request that the postmark impression is applied with clarity and precision - no smudging! Black is the only colour ink that should be used. Catch the corner of the stamp - don’t cover up the stamp design. Refer to the images below as a guide.

Single stamp

Place the postmark on the left hand side.

Pair of stamps

Should be centrally postmarked at the base of the stamps.

Minisheets

Cancel all the stamps, ensuring at least one postmark also marks the envelope.

Multiple stamps or strips

Use the least number of postmarks to cancel the most number of stamps.