I totally agree with your sentiments re: money orders for "domestic"
Recently, when I went to my local Post office to get an "International Money
Order", the postal employee actually talked me out of it. I have used them in
the past and found it to be a slow process indeed, but what he told me
surprised me. He said there have recently been a huge increase in complaints
about Int'l MOs taking an extremely long time to arrive, as well as them
getting lost and never showing up. I placed the $65 in an envelope and
crossed my fingers. All went well, the money arrived in the U.K. in only 3
days. (Now, if only the purchased items would arrive here...)
For the non- US members, here's how it works. We go to our local PO, pay the
amount of the M.O. and fees (which are high) and we fill out an
'application'. We then actually have to mail this application (another fee
for postage) to a mysterious central US facility (in St Louis, Missouri) and
then no one knowws what goes on from there, but we're told it gets issued and
sent out from there.. Shrouded in as much secrecy as Olympus' Wyoming
I'm curious if any U.S. listees have had problems with Int'l MOs?
> Part of being a retro-grumpy person is my liking money orders. When it
> comes to sending money to people you don't know, there's a feeling of
> safety about it. My understanding is that the USPS takes some involvement
> in transactions that go awry involving MO's as possible mail fraud. Plus,
> the USPS can use the $$$. Especially after 9/11 and the anthrax
> horror. They can use a few positive strokes for giving up the irradiation
> scheme too.
> I know this doesn't speak to the realities of international sales ...