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Blog > EUROPA stamps 2023


Every year around this time, we write about the EUROPA stamps and the competition to pick the most beautiful one for that year. This year though, the traditional competition isn’t taking place because all stamps share a common design! This is not new, and has happened multiple times in the history of EUROPA stamps, including in the very first issue back in 1956.

Below is 2023's design as seen on the Finnish stamp. The theme of the year is “Peace — the highest value of humanity”:

Finland's EUROPA stamp for 2023, featuring a stylized knot of multicolored hands, grasping each other.

Every country is using the same design this year, arranged in slightly different ways to match the shape or aesthetics of other stamps in the country. In order to arrive at this design, a contest was run by PostEurop in which the different postal services submitted their interpretations on the topic, and then one was chosen to represent it. The winning entry was created by Linda Bos and Runa Egilsdottir of “A Designer’s Collective”, for POST Luxembourg. About the design, they wrote:

“The world needs a new Peace symbol, uniting all nations. Cultural differences perchance a barrier for a state of Peace. If only mankind could respect each other’s differences by understanding their significance and responding to them with consideration, the world would be a better place. This design shows a visual metaphor for a peacefully integrated, cooperative society in which people embrace each other’s culture. It was inspired by the Celtic Love Knot symbol, with interlocking hearts. The colour palette illustrates all the nations in the world. By adding hands with intertwined fingers, it conveys the message of mutual respect.”

Many other postal services also decided to design a second stamp to pair with this one, and you can see some of those on this forum topic.

While on one hand we’re a little sad that we don’t get to see the usual diversity of designs and interpretations, on the other hand, it’s also heartwarming to see a joint issue. This is how EUROPA stamps started: with a shared design as a symbol of cooperation between European countries. The topic also hails back to the beginning of these stamps, as the designs for the second and third years of the EUROPA series featured peace symbols.

So… what do you think? Do you like the design that was chosen, or would you have preferred if every country had its own unique entry? Aaaaaand, on a different but somewhat related topic, which song do you think will win Eurovision tonight this weekend? 🤔

44 comments so far

-Alter3ch0-, Finland
I am of the opinion that a topic such as peace should convey an united message. Therefore, I like that this year the stamp as a common design.

(I'm rooting for Finland. Cha cha cha cha cha cha cha!)
echinopsiss, Serbia
I think that common design is nice and it's good that all countries have to use it. It is also good that national posts were free to issue more stamps with their own designs (like Serbia did).
When about ESC, I like Portugal the most (singing+staging (absence of too many efects)+charisma, but I think that Sweden of Finland will win.
Regndroppar, Finland
I am disappointed with this same design for all countries even though the idea is nice. I'd have preferred individual stamps from each countries, and luckily some countries are issuing design of their own besides.

I am a bit pessimistic so maybe Sweden will win, but I am keeping fingers crossed for Finland. My absolutely favourites are Norway, Serbia, and Germany, so if Finland doesn't win, I hope it's one of them. Aaand the ESC final takes place first tomorrow. ;) Today is Friday.
ennov-y, Germany
Some countries issued additional stamps with their one design. ✌🏼
AJIeKC, Ukraine
Ukrainian version:
meiadeleite, Portugal
@Regndroppar I was completely convinced the final was today... oooops! Thank you for the remark!
verdiana, Poland
Can they be sent abroad from other countries? In Poland thay only have Polish nominal which is 3.90. You need nominal 8 zł to send abroad. :(
hans62vdberg, Netherlands
First: Verdiana, yes you can. You use the stamp and add 1 or 2 more other stamps to make it the 8 value. Write Priority/Airmail under it! Sometimes I just want to send special stamps so as long as the total value covers the international faire it is ok. 2nd: some countries however do not have exactly the same design, a few have altered background etc. but in most cases the image remained. 3rd. this is the first year ever that I, as a Eurovision fan since childhood do not watch. I did not like the jury fraud last year by countries like Poland and San Marino, I do hate that most is sung in English and no more orchestra, to much show, dance and acting but often terrible singing. Everyone is rooting for Sweden to win, but if Ukrainians abroad have something to say they probably going to vote Ukraine again to the top position, not because it is a good song. But this year... I don't care that much. Although I hope a country will win that never won before, so, Iceland maybe?
muhmachtdiekuh, Germany
It's fine and an important message. 🕊️
Perhaps next year we will have individual stamps again.
jeffpearce, United States of America
@AJIeKC - I collect Ukrainian stamps. I’m looking forward to this issue, as well as peace gif Ukraine. Stay well!
shugal, Germany
I like it that the Europa stamps go back to the original idea of using the same design across all countries. The permission to use additional designs for additional Europa stamps is nice, too.
antoine_france, France
This is not really wise decision, even that theme all countries might have do their own way. Especially it's sad for members of Europa postcard club project - they will recieved postcard with basically the same stamp
sealed4ever, United States of America
Love the graphic and the colors and everything about the stamp
gforp, Denmark
Together for Peace is a theme of Danish Europa stamp. Each year, on May 4th the candles are placed in windows to commemorate the end of the WW II and this year we were also offered a big, candle stamp to be placed instead. Both stamps were issued on May 4th as well. A friendly advice ... do not convert DKK into your currency ;) Pretty insane.
debim, United States of America
I love the concept and symbolism of it being all inclusive. I don't collect stamps, so for me, one is fine. However, I do love to admire the stamps I receive on international postcards.
orange_memo, United States of America
I like the design and concept and may be if they allow each country to be personalized in a slight way that won't change the outline.
I root for Portugal & Sweden in the Eurovision song contest.
Here is the same stamp which will be issued by Ukraine;
SEAott, United States of America
Neat design!
sofiaem, Finland
I wish the Europa stamp would be for international post. In Finland it's only for use in Finland.

And of course; Cha Cha Cha! 🟢🟢😜🟢🟢
jeroenvberlo, Netherlands
Great that the Europe stamps still come out. It will be harder for collectors to tell them apart from a distance though.
Now where is my magnifying glass...?
Mik, France
The french europa stamp is 1.80€ which is international up to 20 grams
werewegian, United Kingdom
Love the stamps. It's a shame the UK doesn't participate.

As for Eurovision I'm a massive fan, have been watching since the 1960's and used to run a fan website in the 90's. My favourites from SF1 were Moldova, Czechia and Israel, from SF2 Belgium, Australia and Lithuania. I also like the Spanish, French and Austrian songs. As for the winner - I think Sweden will win narrowly with Finland in 2nd place.
ahk125, United States of America
Love the message of this stamp! Wish we did something similar in the U.S.. I am definitely rooting for Finland to win, but I also liked Slovenia, Belgium, and Australia.
Flippie, Canada
I love the stamp, the colors, everything. I love the message.
linos203, Germany
Liechtenstein issues two version, one the same design as all, the other different. the are valid to send to Europe.
TattooMom, Netherlands
Since Peace was last year's theme for WPD, I feel this is a bit same same, however Peace can and should of course be an ongoing theme always, until our rulers learn how to achieve that. The design is great and I am looking forward to a lot of cards from many different countries with this stamp!

ps. off topic: is there a theme for this WPD23 already?
HM, Netherlands
ESC: Serbia
Friz, Italy
Every 5 or 10 years Europa stamp design is the same for all the countries. That's the spirit of this issue since the beginning back to 1956. I am a fan of joint issues. I am a little bit disappointed about the face value of such issue. Some countries use that issue to do cash. Its a nonsense. Its a issue for Europe not for Oceania.
Iside82, Italy
I like the idea of the common design, and I like that they chose a universal, non political one. A design that says all people are friends and linked together.
And I also like that, unlike the last years, Italy issued its stamp on May 9th and with a rate appropriate to send postcards internationally :)
Acclax, Switzerland
Switzeland has issued two EUROPA stamps, too. One is the universal one, one is different. I've already sent some of them all around the world.
Demmi, Romania
🕊️ PEACE is an important message. 🕊️
Nice concept and symbolism of it being all-inclusive.🕊️
Mainhattan, Germany
Proposed by Ukrposhta
in order “to show solidarity with Ukraine
and to promote the universal value for all humanity – PEACE”.

Russia and Belarus are excluded in 2023!
That´s what i call a clear statement - quite contrary to Postcrossing!!!

AND you are here talking about the design of the stamp -
just shaking my head!
Poste, United States of America
I like the basic same design for easy worldwide recognition of the theme.
Additional stamps with other designs can also be enjoyed.
“Peace - the highest value of humanity” Is the Goal.
People all over the world are mostly wonderful in my humble opinion.
Our World Leaders should practice leadership skills that would make the rest of us proud. Postcrossing membership would be an excellent start.
AsterArt, Belgium
I agree with this stamp and the symbol of peace. Although we are all european people it is important to respect each other and to respect the traditions and differences between the countries. I hope, we postcrossers can spread a positive vibe. Gustaph of Belgium did the best he could for Eurovision. I like him and his song. People say awful things about him, and that makes me sad. He just want to be who he is. It 's a pitty that people call him names. The question is not what is wrong with Gustaph, but wat is wrong with people who laugh with him. :(
surfclub66, United States of America
I would have preferred they use a traditional peace sign. I don't like this design at all. There are already beautiful symbols of peace, such as a white dove or the hippie peace sign. So many creative and beautiful individual stamps could have been created with these symbols. This one looks cheap and impersonal.
fisherman, Ireland
The idea is good and I like to see Europa stamps going back to basics like when they started.
PaiviM, Finland
That Finnish stamp can only be used inside Finland. It has the map of the our country on the stamp. Those used internationally have a globe.
mikebond, Italy
I also like the idea of a common design, but I'm not a fan of the chosen one...
As for ESC, my favourite countries this year included Czechia, Croatia, Albania, Austria, Switzerland. Among the top positions, I only liked Italy and Norway (not because I'm Italian).
Iris_Khan, Russia
Peace 🕊️🙏🕊️🙏🕊️🙏 PEACE 🙏🙏🙏 PEACE 🙏🙏🙏 PEACE 🕊️🕊️🕊️🕊️🕊️🕊️🕊️🕊️🕊️🕊️🕊️ PEACE 🕊️🙏🕊️🙏🕊️🙏🕊️🙏 PEACE 🙏🙏🙏🙏🙏 PEACE 🕊️🕊️🕊️🕊️
Luziaceleste, Brazil
If every year would be like that, maybe boring and not creative. But the symbol of unity, equity and universal peace being equal to all places is absolutely great!
(miss travelling around Europe during Spring and follow Eurovision contest...)
Reksa, Finland
There is wrong information about the Finnish stamp here.
Of course you can use it on international post, just like all the
others with our map on it (forever stamp). The same with the
older ones that are marked 1 luokka or 2 luokka (1st class and
2nd class). These are now valued at 2,30€.
Just add a 0,20€ stamp next to it to make the 2.50€ international
andry1961, Estonia
On May 25, the Estonian European postage stamp 2023 will be issued. The quantity of stamps is 25,000 copies. Value 2.60 EUR.
Toome2, Netherlands
Yes, I received my first postcard from Liechenstein en with the new stamp today, thank you! Termet.
Boroka, Hungary
On May 9, the Hungarian European postage stamp 2023 has been issued.
franciscojclima, Portugal
Thanks European Post Office for creating an agreement on making the same peace stamp in several countries. I should add that this commitment is important in these times in which Europe needs more and more UNITY. I have already sent a few peace stamps from Portugal. I will send much more, I hope. All the best. Stay safe and healthy. Francisco
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