by Bob Osgoodby
This scam is so old, it has whiskers. If you're like me, you get at least 3 or 4 offers a week to stuff envelopes. They offer to pay you for each envelope stuffed. The ad usually has a forged e-mail address, and they usually give you a PO Box to respond to. While what they say in the ads is not untrue, it has to be examined a bit more carefully.
Before we reveal how this plan really works, let's have a little reality check. Companies that do mass mailings have machines to stuff the envelopes, and can crank out thousands per hour for a few pennies worth of electricity. Do you think they would pay you 25 cents to a dollar to stuff their envelopes.
The offer you receive claims you will earn money for every envelope you stuff, and that you will receive envelopes already stamped, addressed and will be paid in advance for your work. Sounds great, but here is how it really works.
Send them $35 plus $4.00 shipping and handling, and you will receive some brochures, some samples of their product, a few posters with tear-off coupons attached, and gummed address labels with your personal address.Now, you first attach your gummed labels to the tear-off coupons, and get in your car and drive around trying to find places which will allow you to put up one of the posters. Try that at your local Wal-Mart.
If you can find someone who will permit you to post it, then it works this way. If someone is attracted by the poster, tears off the coupon and reads it, they are instructed to send you a self addressed stamped envelope with $1.00 enclosed to receive a free sample. You then stuff their envelope with the sample and promotional material - and you have been paid $1.00 in advance for stuffing an envelope.
This is not a work from home deal, as you must find places to put up their posters. You are not reimbursed for any of the expenses you incur in trying to find these places. You are in effect promoting their product at your own expense. They do not pay you anything for actually stuffing the envelopes as implied in the advertising.
In the cold light of day, this is an offer, which is not what you might think. You are not being paid by the company to stuff their envelopes. You are being paid by the people who respond to the posters you hang up all over town.
This is an operation that requires you to get out and hang up these posters, so it is not a home based opportunity for the disabled or those without transportation. And, even if you decide not get involved after finding out what the real deal is, they have already received your money for a few dollars worth of material they sent you.
Our best advice on this and other envelope stuffing "opportunities" is to investigate them before you send in your $35 - and then don't - the money you save here will be your own.