If you have been participating in my Goodbye, Junk Mail Series, you have been saving your junk mail, canceled credit card offers and canceled your weekly grocery circular. Now it's time to cancel your catalogs. Sometimes you get a catalog because you once ordered something from a company. Sometimes you get a catalog because you ordered from a company or organization that sold your name to another company. Sometimes you have no idea why you are receiving a catalog. If you are receiving unwanted catalogs, there is a simple way to cancel them: CatalogChoice.org.
Once you register with CatalogChoice.org, you can search for catalog companies (and pretty much everyone and everything is in there). Catalog Choice saves your information, so that you only have to enter your name and address for your first cancellation. You should try to enter your name exactly as it appears on the relevant mailing label. Often you can complete the cancellation process right on the Catalog Choice website. Sometimes you will be directed to the catalog company's own website. You can check back at the dashboard to view the progress of your cancellations. For any future catalogs you receive, simply tear off the page with the mailing label before recycling the rest of the catalog, and leave the page by your computer until you have a chance to cancel the catalog at Catalog Choice. You can also use Catalog Choice to cancel your phone book delivery.
Now here is the important part: after canceling all your unwanted catalogs, make sure that in the future, whenever you order something, you tell the company, "Do not send me catalogs, do not share my information with others." Do this with any new magazine subscriptions as well. This will insure you do not inadvertently get added to new catalog mailing lists. I currently receive catalogs from about 10 different companies, for a total of 3-5 catalogs each month. I am pretty sure all of these catalogs resulted from 3 purchases (made in the last 3 years) and then a whole lot of sharing. In the future, if I order a product from a company that I know has a catalog, I will try to order over the phone just so that I can tell a real live person:
"Do not send me catalogs.
Do not share my information with others."
You might also say this to charitable organizations you donate money to ("Do not send me mailings; do not share my information with others"). I am planning to call my Alma Mater one of these days to ask them to only solicit donations by email.
I hope to soon be receiving zero catalogs.
How many catalogs do you get a month?
How many could you cancel?
The complete Goodbye, Junk Mail Series:
Step 1: Save Your Junk