By now you’ve probably heard that the US Postal Service is planning another rate hike this year.Â The cost of mailing a first-class letter will increase two cents to $.44 in May. Â Standard bulk mail rates will also go up, as will periodicals.Â This will be the fourth postage increase in as many years.
While it may seem like the price of postage goes up far more frequently than it used to, that’s not quite the case.Â Since the cost of a first-class stamp first broke into the double digits in 1974, rates have been increased on average about every two years.Â In two separate years, 1978 and 1981, rates increased twice.Â Moreover, the amount postage increases by remains fairly consistent as well.Â From 1971 to 1981, the cost of a first-class stamp increased by 10 cents.Â The span between 1991 and 2001 saw the smallest increase, at five cents.Â Since 2001, the price has increased 10 cents.
Postal customers can partially stave off the higher rates for a little while by stocking up on Forever stamps now.Â But be warned: many post offices have difficulty keeping them in stock.Â For mailers who use meters or permit imprints, there is no putting off paying the higher postage.
For a link to the current and new postage rates go to www.ipresort.com/postage .