Looks like it’s about time to start buying those Forever Stamps now! The United States Post Office announced today that they’ve decided to current stamp price  by a penny to forty-two cents, effective May 12th. Less than a year ago the USPS increased the price of a first class postage stamp by two cents to the price of 41 cents, all within its newly granted rights of being able to increase it within the rate of inflation.
With inflation at 2.9% last year, the USPS was allowed to increase the price of a stamp by a penny without any oversight as long as they give 45 days notice (they plan on giving 90 days). I don’t know why anyone (or even businesses) would need 90 days to react to a price hike but I guess that’s considerate of them.
Here are other notable increases (or unchanges):
- Each additional ounce of a letter will remain an extra 17 cents (no change).
- Cost to mail a postcard increases to 27 cents (+1 cent).
- Large envelope of up to two ounces will now cost $1 (+3 cents).
- Money orders up to $500 will remain $1.05 (no change).
- Certified mail will now cost $2.70 (+5 cents).
If you haven’t picked up a few of those Forever Stamps, now’s a good time to buy some. I hardly mail any letters nowadays, mostly cards, and I probably won’t be getting any of Forever Stamps myself (too many leftover stamps from the wedding invitations and RSVP cards). I think that the USPS needs to rethink its strategy if it really wants to remain competitive in the shipping game. However, based on the behavior and performance of the staff at most post offices I visit, it’s clear that competitiveness is hardly a concern (government subsidies don’t hurt either!). 🙂