USPS Issues New Postage Rates; Cost of USPS First Class Postage Increases Again

Most USPS postage Rates, including usps first class postage, saw price Increases for 2018

USPS Issues New Postage Rates; Cost of USPS First Class Postage Increases Again
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February 7, 2018

The cost of mailing a first-class letter has gone up yet again. The United States Postal Service (USPS) placed the increase into effect on January 21, 2018.

first class rates

  • For First Class Mail Letters (1 oz.), the rate increased from $0.49 to $0.50 when purchased at the Post Office. It costs $.21 for each additional ounce.
  • The discounted “Metered Mail” category for First Class Mail Letters (1 oz.), which includes online postage providers and postage meters, increased from $0.46 to $0.47. It costs $.21 for each additional ounce.
  • First Class Mail Flats (1 oz.) increased from $0.98 to $1.00. It costs $.21 for each additional ounce.
  • First Class Package Service saw an average rate increase of 3.9%. Commercial Base (online postage) rates now start at $2.66 (previously $2.61).

other rates

  • Postcard rates increased by one cent to $0.35.
  • Priority Mail Express saw an overall rate increase of 3.9%. Commercial Base (online postage) rates now start at $21.98 (previously $21.18).
  • Priority Mail saw an average rate increase of 3.9%. Commercial Base (online postage) rates now start at $6.55 (previously $5.95).
  • Parcel Select Ground saw an average rate increase of 4.9%. Commercial Base (online postage) rates now start at $6.55 (previously $5.95).
  • Media Mail saw an average rate increase of 3.9%. Rates now start at $2.66 (previously $2.63).

Trying to save a sinking ship

The price increases are the latest in a series of steps the USPS has taken in an attempt to achieve financial stability over the last few years. The USPS reported revenue of $69.6 billion for fiscal year 2017, which is a decrease of $1.8 billion compared to 2016. It's due mainly to accelerated declines in First-Class and Marketing Mail volume. The USPS suffered a net loss of $2.7 billion for 2017.

In 2017, mail volumes declined by approximately 5.0 billion pieces, or 3.6%, while package volumes grew by 589 million pieces, or 11.4%. The growth of package volume provided some financial help to the overall picture, but declining First-Class and Marketing Mail volume is hurting the bottom line and making it difficult to pay obligations.

Saturday & Sunday Delivery

The USPS tried to end Saturday delivery beginning the week of August 5, 2013, claiming that the move would save the agency $2 billion annually. The Government Accountability Office made a ruling effectively blocking the service cut. Mail carriers still deliver mail on Saturday.

Since that time, the USPS has actually expanded delivery services to include Sunday for some of its package services. Traditional mail isn't delivered on Sunday, but if you need a package from retailers like Amazon you can get them delivered on Sunday.

Need to Calculate Postage?

You can calculate a postage price online via the USPS website. You can also buy and print postage from the same site.