Dubai's Postal Service has along history. Originally opened in 1909 as a Branch Office by the Indian Postal Administration, this Branch Office was later taken over by Pakistan Postal Administration. Subsequently British Postal Administration took over the control in 1948 prior to Dubai Government assuming control on June 14, 1963. In 1972 Dubai's Postal Service became part of UAE's Postal Service.
This story is about Dubai's Postal Service in 1971 when many of their International Postal Services still depended on pieces of paper being sent around the world.
My Mother in Law lived in New Zealand. She thoughtfully airmailed a 15 New Zealand Dollar Postal Order for my Birthday.
The Postal Order Process was simple.
All I had to take the Postal Order my Mother in Law airmailed to me to Dubai's Post Office. They would match my Postal Order with their copy Order thenpay me the equivalent of 15 New Zealand Dollars in Dirhams ------ EASY!!!
Post Office Clerk looked at my PO, disappeared through a door marked POSTMASTER, then shortly reappeared beckoning me to enter. Inside I met the Postmaster. We shook hands and exchanged greetings. I was invited to sit down. Tea arrived. The Postmaster and I drank tea and discussed the world in general. Coffee arrived. We discussed the world some more.
With coffee cups emptied and shaken (indicating "No more thank you"), it was down to business. Postmaster produced his copy of the Postal Order. I produced my Postal Order. He called the Clerk and gave him both pieces of paper. Clerk disappeared through the door. Postmaster and I continued our worldly discussions. After awhile the Clerk reappeared with another piece of paper. Postmaster examined it then nodded. Clerk showed me the paper. I nodded. The paper contained thre Clerk's calculation of how many Dirhams my 15 New Zealand Dollars were worth. Did I agree? Of course. I signed the Clerk's paper. Postmaster nodded. Clerk went to the safe located in one corner of the Postmaster's Office. It was a very large safe with an impressive impregnable combination lock. The Clerk put on his glasses, moved close to the safe's door then bent down to get close to the safe door. He then carefully read the safe's combination lock's security code taped to the oputside of the safe door before SLOWLY rotating the combination lock dials - SLOWLY because he had to keep referring to the combination security code taped to the outside of the safe door! Sometimes convenience took precedence over security in Dubai as it used to be!!!. Dubai's Optical Servicesi were not particularly good in 1971 either!
With combintaion lock code accurately read and the safe door open, the Clerk pulled out a wad of banknotes and carefully counted out my Dirhams. Postmaster nodded. Clerk gravely approached me and presented my dirhams. Hand shakes, smiles and farewells followed. I left the Post Office with my birthday dirhams safely in my pocket.
See more Photos of Dubai Post Office HERE