Current US Postage Rates

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Since the most recent price increase from the postal service, there has been some confusion about the current postage rates. Here are the new rates, effective May 12, 2008:

o Letter, First Class (1 oz.) 42 cents
o Letter, First Class (2 oz.) 59 cents
o Postcard 27 cents
o Large Envelope (2 oz.) $1.00
o Certified Mail $2.70
o Money Orders (up to $500) $1.05
o International Letter (First Class)
(to Canada and Mexico) (1 oz.) 72 cents
o International Letter (First Class)
(to other countries) (1 oz.) 94 cents

The post office will be offering limited discounts for postage purchased through their Click and Ship service as well as a few other third party methods made popular by online retail sites such as eBay. Sellers on eBay most often use the flat rate Priority Mail services offered by the USPS. For those concerned sellers, as well as other people shipping something more than a letter, here are the current, non-discounted Priority Mail flat rates that went into effect on May 12, 2008:

o Priority Mail Flat Rate Envelope $4.80
o Priority Mail Flat Rate Boxes $9.80
o Priority Mail Flat Rate Boxes (Large) $12.95
(APO/FPO destinations: $10.95)

WebVpnUSPS.Gov – The USPS Express Mail service has switched to a zone-based system, while also still taking into account the weight of the package. This could mean decreased prices for packages mailed to close destinations, but increases for those mailed across great distances, such as New York to Los Angeles. Packages shipped via Express Mail over moderate distances should see little to no change in pricing with the current postage rates. Also, the Express Mail flat rate envelope will still be available for $16.50, and that will not change based on distance or weight.

International first class mail has switched to shape-based pricing, which means the price depends on the dimensions of the letter you are sending.

WebVpnUSPS.GovThe rate increase is something everyone needs to get used to because on December 20, 2006, the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act was signed into law, allowing the USPS to increase postage rates with a notice of 45 days, but only if the proposed increase is within the inflation rate from the previous 12 months. Operating within these guidelines, the USPS plans on an annual increase every May, giving consumers 90 days notice instead of just the required 45. So if you plan on buying first class postage in bulk, you might want to look into the Forever Stamp offered by the USPS. It allows you to pay the current postage rate for first class mail (42 cents now) and the stamp will remain good for a first class 1 oz. letter at any time in the future. That way you do not have to constantly check online to get the current postage rates for a first class letter when all you want to do is mail in your electric bill.WebVpnUSPS.Gov

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