Stamp Price Increase — How to Prepare for the New Price of a Stamp

On January 27th, 2013, the US postal service will officially enact a brand new stamp price: 46 cents for a standard 1-ounce letter. A slew of other new postage increases are also a part of the change and they’re detailed here.

The same exact thing happened this week one year ago — a one-cent increase to the price of a stamp — so it’s pretty certain that every year around mid-January, you’ll have to scramble to take advantage of the imminent change. Make sure you’re not losing out because of the price change!

What You Need to Do Before the Price of a Stamps Goes Up

Stock up on forever stamps: Now’s your last chance to grab forever stamps for the lower price of 45 cents. Forever stamps are always valid for mailing a letter regardless of future postage increases — they’re always good for mailing a standard 1-ounce letter. However, because of the price adjustment, buying a single forever stamp will cost one cent more. A roll of 100 stamps next week will cost a dollar more. If the price of a stamp increases at the same rate, in a decade, that same roll could cost about $10 more. Buying stamps now, especially if you do a lot of mailing, will save some cash and hassle in the long run.

Use up your old stamps: If you still have official 45-cent stamps that aren’t labelled “forever” (most novelty, collectable or themed stamps aren’t forever stamps) you need to use them quickly! Send out your bills early or drop other letters you’ve been procrastinating on in the mail. Even though the price of a stamp officially changes on Sunday, since many corner mailboxes aren’t serviced on Sundays, there’s a short implicit “grace period.” If you can get your mail in the box on Monday, January 28th, it will probably reach its destination — just make sure you’ve listed a return address just in case. So, you’ve got time. If you have any leftover stamps on Monday, you’re still in luck. The USPS offers one-cent stamps which you can also add to the corner of a letter to bring your postage total up to the new 46-cent requirement.