Good to know

Santa Claus and his busiest time of the year

Santa Claus tells us how he answers all the letters and what you should never forget when writing to him.

Sandra Gonseth

Dear Santa, where do you live?

I used to live on a mountain in Lapland that’s shaped like a huge ear, so you can hear children’s wishes. But since I’ve become better known, I’ve moved to Rovaniemi in the Arctic Circle, which is a bit more conveniently located for my sled.

The official Christmas post office is also located there.

What’s your job like?

I work in a log cabin opposite the post office. Mind you, it’s easy to miss because of all the gift shops here! My office looks like a living room that hasn’t been tidied in a while. Letters are piled up everywhere. They come from all over the world. They’re usually addressed to “Santa Claus at the Arctic Circle” or simply to “Santa Lapland”.

Do you have anyone to help you?

I’ve got lots of post elves who help me answer the letters. They all wear a red felt cap on their head, a red jacket and a white scarf. This means I can recognize them straight away. In December I get up to 32,000 letters a day. I wouldn’t be able to answer them all myself. I counted, too, and since 1985 I’ve received 15 million letters from 198 countries.

See on the webcam how cold it is today in the Christmas village at the Arctic Circle!”

Do you meet people, too?

Of course! I sit in my wooden chair and ask the visitors to come and sit next to me. While photos are being taken, I answer questions in English, German or French. Then I tell them how I’ve got more reindeer than there are stars in the sky. And, of course, that I’m the only real Santa Claus in the whole world.

And what do you do after you’ve finished your work, when all the kids are happy?

I return to my cabin in the snow-covered forest, make a fire in the fireplace, and enjoy some traditional Finnish Christmas ham.

Baking biscuits, singing and listening to Christmas songs, wrapping presents: for lots of children, the festive season is the most wonderful time of the year. Doing up a list for Santa is also a very important moment – it’s not unusual to spend many hours talking to little friends, studying catalogues, marvelling at shop windows, and much more besides before you write it.

Once the list is done, you’re ready to go: Santa’s delighted when you send him your wishes in a letter or drawing. Swiss Post will take them safely to Santa. The address is secret though – you won’t be able to tease it out of your mail carrier ...

Has that piqued your curiosity? Then go ahead and write to Santa. It couldn’t be easier!

The correct address

Just make sure you write “To Santa Claus” on the envelope. Then the letter will get to the right place. And, just as important, write your name and your address on your list, or Santa will be upset because he’ll want to write back to you!

written by

Sandra Gonseth

Editor