People around the world celebrate Pen Pal Day on June 1 with great excitement. The rich tradition of making pen pals continues even today despite social media. People love writing and reading letters from friends. Pen Pal Day is an excellent way to learn about people from different countries and cultures and can help you to connect with new pen pals from around the world.

History of Pen Pal Day

The trend of making pen pals itself started during the 1930s. In 1936, a society named Student Letter Exchange was formed to help people find suitable pen pals. It helped young students from different countries connect through letters and learn about each other’s cultures.Many pen pal companies back in the day charged a fee for their services. They would assist people in finding a suitable pen friend according to their likes, dislikes, and personality. During the 1950s, newspapers and magazines started columns dedicated to pen friends. People looking for a pen pal would either have their brief details published in that section or find one with similar interests from the list that’s already published in that column.Today, one can also find pen friends through online communities and social media like Facebook and Reddit. National Pen Pal Day is a fantastic way to make your pen friends feel special and loved. Pen pals share personalized gifts and messages with each other on this day. A pen pal can be from any part of the world and, in most cases, it is not necessary to meet them in person. You interact with them through letters.

Pen Pal Day timeline

1860s
Modern Postal Services are Introduced

People start sending and receiving letters through modern postal services.

1931
‘Pen Pal’ Enters the Oxford Dictionary

The term ‘pen pal’ gets a place in the Oxford English Dictionary.

1965
Pen Pal Service Goes Automatic

The Parker Pen pavilion offers an automated pen pal matching service.

1997
A Memoir of Pen Friends is Published

Australian-American writer Geraldine Brooks' memoir showcases her journey of meeting childhood pen friends.

Pen Pal Day FAQs

Are pen pals dangerous?

No, making pen pals is generally a fun and safe way to make new friends all across the globe. Just don’t share any personal, sensitive information that can be used against you. You also need to make sure that your letters are written respectfully and courteously. Don’t write anything that could be offensive or hurtful.

What is the safest pen pal website?

There are various websites and groups on Facebook that let you connect with those who are looking for a pen pal like PenPal World, Wattpad, International Pen Friends, Student Letter Exchange, Penpals Now, Sassociations, Postcrossing, and Interpals. 

How do I start my first pen pal letter?

Your first letter should contain your basic details such as name, age, and hobbies. You can write about your life experiences to initiate interesting conversations with your pen pal.

Pen Pal Day Activities

  1. Learn calligraphy

    Calligraphy is a great way to stylize simple handwritten letters. You can either use wooden pens that are used by professional calligraphists or a regular ink pen instead. It is better to start with something simple like round-hand calligraphy that consists of light, connective strokes.

  2. Create customized envelopes

    It’s a great feeling giving customized letters to your friends and loved ones. If you already have a pen friend, you can make them feel special by sending them a letter in a handmade envelope and seal it with a fancy wax seal.

  3. Write a letter to your future self

    Another fun activity that you can try on this Pen Pal Day is to write a letter to yourself. You can write about your current goals/ accomplishments or fun predictions on how your life is going to shape up in the near future. Many websites let you send emails that will be received on a particular future date that's selected by you.

5 Facts About Writing That Will Blow Your Mind

  1. Even Dr. Suess had writer’s block

    Dr. Suess had a cupboard full of hats to beat writer’s block.

  2. Writing is as good as meditation

    Writing elevates neural activity, the same way meditation does.

  3. Word processors replaced typewriters for writing

    Len Deighton's “Bomber” was the world’s first novel written on an IBM word processor.

  4. There’s a medical term for writing cramps

    The term ‘mogigraphia’ is another fancy word for writer’s cramp.

  5. It can increase intelligence and cognitive functioning

    Writing is a brain-boosting activity for people of all ages, especially adults.

Why We Love Pen Pal Day

  1. It promotes diversity

    Through pen friends, you get to understand the cultures and traditions of different countries and see the world in a new light.

  2. It improves vocabulary

    Those who are not good at writing can work on their writing skills by handwriting letters to their pen pals.

  3. It is an interactive activity

    Writing letters is a great way to get a digital detox and interact with new friends through handwritten letters.

Pen Pal Day dates

Year Date Day
2023 June 1 Thursday
2024 June 1 Saturday
2025 June 1 Sunday
2026 June 1 Monday
2027 June 1 Tuesday
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