Sure, no one wants to see USPS postage rates increase in 2015. Unless you’re the Post Office.
The USPS has been trying hard to stop a cash hemorrhage since 2006, when Congress passed a law that required the USPS to pre-fund its retirement expenses.
This is the same Congress that told USPS that postage rate increases can’t exceed 5% per year, that certain non-performing offices can’t be closed, and that non profit organizations are entitled to significant discounts, or even free postage, if your organization is Congress.
So here we are, and as of May 31, postage rates are increasing again. Well, sort of…
A one ounce First Class letter stamp remains the same: $0.49. However, the USPS Postcard rate is $.35, up from $.34.
The quirky discount offered by the USPS for metered mail gets quirkier: a 1 oz letter goes from $0.48 to $0.485. Next thing you know, there will be special postage rates when paying with Bitcoin.
It seems that the real bread and butter for the Post Office is the heavier envelopes, flats and packages. And that’s where the USPS rate increases really take effect.
For each additional ounce over the first ounce, First Class letter postage tacks on $.22 (up 4.8% from $0.21).
First-Class Package Services (previously called Mail Parcels), for packages bigger than letters or flats, start at a postage rate of $2.54 for 1-3 ounces (up 9.5% from $2.32). Check out the USPS website for all the new rates.
But before you get outraged at postage inflation, take a breath and consider this: a postage stamp remains the bargain of the century.
Where else can you find the value you find in USPS postage rates? You seal the box or envelope and put it in a mailbox. Six days a week, someone drives out, checks the mailbox and drives back to the local Post Office, where your item is sorted and re-sorted, travels by numerous trucks, planes and trains to a final Post Office possibly 8000 miles distant, driven out and deposited to the address written across the front.
All this for a paltry price starting at $0.49 (retail), or $0.35 (the postcard rate).
And all this without government subsidy of USPS operating expenses.
You can’t even take your car around the block for that price.
So, yes, USPS postage rates have increased as of May 31, 2015. But considering all that we’re saving, it ain’t so bad.
If you’re a business located in the USA, you may qualify for our free 2015 postal rate chart, with new First-Class and Flat Rate Priority Mail rates and a handy magnet on back (’cause that’s what we do). Sign up on our magnetbyMail webpage and we’ll mail it right out. Did we mention it’s free?