Some 2,000 children have sent a letter to Santa Claus this year to date, asking for one or more presents, according to the Cyprus Postal Services.
The number of children who wrote letters to Santa this year is expected to increase by the end of 2013 as the postal services receive several letters each day.
According to Cyprus Postal Services Director, Andreas Gregoriou, the service treats the letters with respect towards kids and makes sure that all kids receive a reply from Santa in order to avoid hurting their feelings.
Chief postal superintendent Pavlos Pavlides said that a special crew comprised of existing staff has been created to deal with these letters. The team reads the letters and replies to all kids who have included their home address on the letter.
Members of the team responsible for opening and reading the letters include Maria Eracleous and Toula Ektoros.
Every day during the festive season letters are being read at the conference hall of the Post office at Prodromou street in Strovolos, Nicosia.
For some letters, the staff even make the kids' wishes come true, where possible.
For example, a few days ago a child from China sent a letter to Santa asking for Cyprus stamps. The staff replied to the letter and had also included in the envelope Cyprus stamps.
Kids write to Santa in Greek or in English and most letters have obvious spelling mistakes. Some letters also include drawings or stickers.
The number of kids who write to Santa Claus increases each year. In the last few years, it has been noted that most children who write to Santa come from mixed marriages or their parents are foreigners who live and work in Cyprus.
These kids are hoping to receive gifts from Santa as they know that their parents might not be able to afford their Christmas presents.
It is worth mentioning, that in some cases, children's wishes in the letters are not limited to just material things. Some kids ask for a job for their father who is unemployed or for more money for their mother so that she can buy them chocolates every day.
Santa writes back
Cyprus Postal Services in their efforts to reply to all kids issued special letters and envelopes that travel free of charge. The special stamp on the envelopes depicts Santa and the sender’s address is: Santa Claus, North Pole, CY 1900.
At the end of the letter, in small print, it is mentioned that Santa’s letters are provided by the Cyprus Postal Services.
This iniative of a Santa service started three years ago and is aimed at not disappointing children who still believe in Santa Claus and write letters with their wishes.
The standard reply to kids’ letters is written in such a way as to allow parents who will buy the present to buy what they can afford and not necessarily what the kid has asked for. In the letter, Santa tells children that even good kids do not always get what they ask for but reassures them that they will definitely have a little surprise under the tree.