Before I moved to Switzerland, I read that they receive more junk mail than any other country in the world. I don’t have the stats to prove that claim, but after living here for 18 months, I can confirm that there is A LOT of junk mail. To me, this is shocking, since they hate trash.
Now, there is a way to prevent this junk mail from entering your mailbox. You can post a “Pas de Pub S.V.P.” sign or sticker. Literally translated, this means “no publications, please.” Several of my neighbors have one, and I wondered for most of my first year where they got their stickers. Once, in a French lesson, I remembered to ask my French tutor. She said I could get one at the little kiosk that sells magazines and newspapers next to the post office. It took me MONTHS to remember to stop there and ask. But, they don’t have them. They told me to go to Manor (a department store). Of course, I didn’t plan on a scavenger hunt the day I stopped in that little kiosk, so I didn’t go on to Manor. And I still kept getting junk mail.
Fast forward some weeks (I lost track of time along the way), and I was in the post office with a French speaking colleague. I asked him to ask them where I get the sticker. Surely the post office would know. (Why they don’t carry the sticker in the first place makes no sense to me!) They confirmed that I was to get one at Manor (the department store).
After 18 months of recycling enormous amounts of junk mail, I’m happy to report that I was finally in Manor a week or so ago, AND I finally remembered to ask them about the sticker. Sure enough, they have a whole section of stickers near the wrapping paper and stationery (obviously) with a whole host of messages – one of which is “pas de pub s.v.p.” AND it’s only 1.70 CHF – a bargain!
Now I can finally defend myself from junk mail!