Effective tomorrow July 10, the cost of USPS stamps will increase incrementally and continually. This is what you need to know.
In a Nutshell
The price of mailing a letter in the U.S. is going up now and will continue to increase twice yearly.
To start with, the United States Postal Service (USPS) has announced an increase in the price of USPS Forever Stamps from their current cost of $.58 to $.60, effective July 10, 2022.
USPS Forever Stamps are the only First-Class Mail stamps you can buy now and use FOREVER for First-Class Mail postage, regardless of future price increases.
As detailed below, USPS also announces increases in the cost of metered letters, postcards, and international mail. See this press release for more information.
On July 10, 2022:
- The price of a First-Class Forever Stamp will increase by $0.02, from $0.58 to $0.60.
- The price to send a one-ounce domestic letter will increase by $0.02, from $0.58 to $0.60.
- The additional ounce rate for single-piece First-Class letters will increase by $0.04, from $0.20 to $0.24.
- The metered mail rate for First-Class one-ounce letters will increase by $0.04 from $0.53 to $0.57.
- Postcard stamps will increase by $0.04 from $0.40 to $0.44.
- International one-ounce letter rates will increase from $1.30 to $1.40.
- Media mail rates will increase by 9%. Rates now begin at $3.49 (previously $3.19).
- The prices of other services, like Registered Mail, Signature Confirmation, Return Receipt, and Certified Mail, will also be impacted.
Beyond that, the USPS has announced plans to raise postage prices twice yearly, with the next increase to take effect in January 2023. It’s time to gear up, especially if you are frequent user of the U.S Mail’s outbound services.
What USPS and Others are Saying[The USPS] “intends to be judicious in the use of available pricing authority but anticipates the prospect that, given our current financial condition, the price change for each market-dominant class may be required to apply most or all pricing authority available on the date of filing.”
If you think that statement sounds ominously vague, you’re not alone. An industry watchdog, The Alliance of Nonprofit Mailers has called this filing “a death spiral accelerator” for the USPS. It also warns its members, “We assume USPS will use the full pricing authority it has at any moment.”
The services affected by these twice-a-year price hikes include first-class mail, marketing (advertising) mail, periodicals, package services, and special services—many in which the USPS holds a monopoly. For them and for now, USPS is the only game in town
In the past, inflation caps limited USPS’s ability to raise the price of a stamp by keeping postage increases in line with inflation rates. But the Postal Regulatory Commission recently gave the agency additional rate authority. This means we may see historical price increases while the Postal Service tries to save itself from financial ruin.
A word to the wise: Get ready for big postage increases now and again every six months in the future—increases that businesses, manufacturers, and distributors will pass on to us, their consumers.
What Can We Do?
If you rarely use outgoing USPS services, an increase of two cents from time to time is far more tolerable than other soaring prices we are witnessing at this time. But if on the other hand, you do send out mail requiring U.S postage, it might not be too late to load up on Forever stamps at their current rate or less!
In the past, selling postage stamps was a thing that only the U.S. Postal Service could do. But today, various retailers, grocery stores, banks, gas stations, and pharmacies sell stamps. And a handful sells USPS postage stamps at a discount.
Costco members can purchase U.S. Postage stamps at a discount at any Costco warehouse or Costco.com. Even though the price of a Forever stamp goes to $.60 on July 10, Costco members can purchase Forever stamps at current member prices through August 28, 2022.
Walmart also sells stamps in store and on its website.
A legitimate postage-on-demand service, Stamps.com makes it possible for you to print your own postage and shipping labels in seconds. With a Stamps.com account, you can get postage discounts not available at the post office. It’s quite an operation and while it might seem as though you’ve turned into a counterfeiter, you can relax on that score. It is totally legitimate, trustworthy, and sanctioned by the USPS.
Before signing up, ensure you read everything and fully understand that there are fees. However, your discounts could offset the fees if you are a small business owner or just adore sending hundreds of letters and postcards monthly. Either way, it is certainly worth checking out.
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