Stamp Prices Are Going Up Again. Here’s How to Avoid the Increase

Stamp Prices Are Going Up Again. Here’s How to Avoid the Increase

Stamp prices are going up again this weekend, the second increase this year and the third in the last 12 months. 

The cost of a first-class “forever” stamp will go from 63 cents to 66 cents, following a jump from 60 to 63 cents in late January (and, prior to that, from 58 to 60 cents in July 2022).

In a statement announcing the price hike, the US Postal Service blamed it on inflation, as well as what it labeled an earlier “defective pricing model.”

The increase, along with several other changes, will take effect on Sunday, July 9.

It will be the fifth uptick in forever stamp prices since January 2019, when they retailed for 50 cents.  

Here’s what you need to know about the price increase, including why it’s happening, what products are being affected and how you can avoid paying more (at least for a while).

For more money tips, find out how to save on car insurance and your internet bill.

How much is the price of stamps going up?

On July 9, the cost of a first-class stamp will rise from 63 to 66 cents, a 4.6% increase.  

There will be increases in other Post Office offerings, as well. 

USPS increases

Product Current Price New Price
Letters (1 oz.) 63 cents 66 cents
Letters (metered 1 oz.) 60 cents 63 cents
Domestic Postcards 48 cents 51 cents
International Postcards $1.45 $1.50
International Letter (1 oz.) $1.45 $1.50

Are there changes to shipping rates?

On July 9, the Post Office will also launch USPS Ground Advantage, a new shipping service intended to replace and combine existing offerings.

It will include free package pickup and $100 insurance coverage, and will reflect a 3.2% decrease in retail prices and a 0.7% drop in commercial prices.

USPS Ground Advantage “provides a simple, reliable, and more affordable way to ship packages in two-to-five business days across the continental United States,” the agency said in a release.

Details on pricing information can be found on the Postal Service’s Postal Explorer website.

Why do stamp prices keep going up?

The Post Office is saddled with more than $144 billion in debts and unfunded liabilities, according to the Government Accountability Office. It receives no tax dollars for operating expenses and relies on postage, products and services for funding.

While the Postal Service Reform Act signed by President Joe Biden last year included a $107 billion bailout, analysts say the USPS underestimated its losses from marketing mailing and other sources.

Postmaster General Louis DeJoy’s 10-year plan to overhaul the agency, unveiled in 2021, projected it would break even this year for the first time in nearly two decades.

Now, a little more than two years later, DeJoy has pushed that goal to 2030.

He acknowledged that, after reporting a net loss of $2.5 billion in the second quarter alone, the Post Office would likely close out 2023 at least $4 billion in the red.

By raising prices twice yearly, the USPS hopes to generate an additional $44 billion by 2031, Reuters reported

How to avoid paying more for stamps

You can dodge the price hike, at least temporarily, by purchasing Forever stamps before July 9. Forever stamps are always valid, regardless of when they were bought or the price paid.

Forever stamps are available at online retailers like Amazon or directly from the US Postal Service website.

For more money tips, discover the best times to fly and easy ways to save on gas.

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