June 14, 2024

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Price of Stamps Likely Going Up in 2023

Price of Stamps Likely Going Up in 2023

The United States Postal Service (USPS) is looking toward raising the price of stamps. As of January 22, 2023, the USPS is proposing price increases for first-class mail forever stamps, metered mail rates, postcards, and international letters. The stamp price increase proposal comes in a bid to offset the rise in inflation and increasing costs by the USPS.

Stamp Price Increase

The new prices would mean a rate increase on some mail products. If approved, as of January 22, 2023, the price for a forever stamp would go up by 3 cents, from 60 cents to 63 cents. Similarly, the price for a one-ounce metered mail will be raised to 63 cents up from 60 cents. Sending domestic cards which used to cost 44 cents will now cost 48 cents. A one-ounce letter mailed to a foreign country would increase to $1.45 from $1.40. There will be no increase to the single-piece letter and flat additional-ounce price, which remains at 24 cents.

This could be the second time in six months that the USPS is raising stamp prices. In July the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) approved a similar price increase. It raised first-class mail prices by nearly 6.5 %. The domestic one-ounce letter had increased to 60 cents from 58 cents; postcard stamps went up to 44 cents from 40 cents and one-ounce international letters went from $1.30 to $1.40.

The Governors of the U.S. Postal Service have approved the recent plan to raise postage prices, and now it’s up to the Postal Regulatory Commission to review the proposal.

Operational Costs

The USPS had seen its operating expenses continue to rise, forcing it to explore increasing the current stamp prices. Earlier this year it had warned that the agency could see losses amounting to $160 billion over the next ten years.

The USPS serves more than 163 million addresses across the US. employing more than 7.3 million people while processing and delivering 46% of the world’s mail. The Postal Service generally receives no tax dollars for operating expenses and relies on the sale of postage, products, and services to fund its operations.

The price increase proposal follows USPS’ planned peak-season pricing announcement in early August to offset the costs of operating during the holiday season affecting prices on commercial and retail deliveries.

This includes domestic competitive parcels: Priority Mail Express (PME), Priority Mail (PM), First-Class Package Service (FCPS), Parcel Select, and USPS Retail Ground which saw prices increase between 25 cents to $6.50. The change in price is based on the weight of the parcel and the distance it’s being shipped. Only International products would be unaffected by the temporary rate adjustment.

When does the price of stamps go up?

The United States Postal Service has officially announced the price of postage stamps will go up on Jan. 22, 2023. If given the nod by Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) the proposed increases will raise First-Class Mail prices by approximately 4.2 percent to offset the rise in inflation. The price changes have already been approved by the Governors of the U.S. Postal Service.

“As operating expenses continue to rise, these price adjustments provide the Postal Service with much-needed revenue to achieve the financial stability sought by its Delivering for America 10-year plan. The prices of the U.S. Postal Service remain among the most affordable in the world”, said a statement from the USPS.

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