Americans Send Fewer Holiday Cards Penny-pinchers skimp on mailbox cheer By Nick McMaster, Newser Staff Posted Dec 19, 2009 7:52 AM CST 13 comments Comments An unidentified U.S. Navy sailor buys Christmas cards Wednesday, Dec. 16, 2009, at the Navy base in Manama, Bahrain. (AP Photo/Hasan Jamali) (Newser) – Noticing a certain emptiness in your mailbox? Holiday cards are the latest victims of the weak economy—Americans sent 11% fewer pieces of mail than in 2008 during the first half of December, the US Postal Service reports. Hallmark estimates that 1.8 billion holiday cards will be sent this year, at least 1 million fewer than in recent years. "I'm not sending any," one prudent Chicago woman tells USA Today. "Do the math: the cost of the cards, then 44 cents for each stamp times 50 cards. That's an indulgence I just can't afford this year."