In 2024, the cost of postage stamps in the United States is set to increase once again. The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) recently announced that the price of a First-Class Mail Forever stamp will rise from 66 to 68 cents, with the new rates taking effect on January 21.
The adjustment specifically applies to single stamps designed for letters weighing one ounce or less, while the additional-ounce price will remain steady at 24 cents. The decision to implement these price changes stems from ongoing inflationary pressures on operating expenses and the lingering effects of a previously flawed pricing model, as outlined in a USPS press release.
To address financial challenges and work towards the objectives outlined in its Delivering for America 10-year plan, the USPS emphasizes the necessity of these price adjustments. Approved by the governors of the Postal Service, the changes represent an approximate 2% increase in mailing services product prices.
Notably, the cost of mailing postcards, whether domestically or internationally, is also set to rise. The price for mailing international letters will increase from $1.50 to $1.55. Additionally, package shipping costs are anticipated to see a nearly 6% increase, according to reports from ABC News.
This upcoming adjustment marks the second stamp price hike within a relatively short span, following the increase from 63 to 66 cents in July of the same year. Despite these changes, previously purchased Forever stamps retain their value and may still be utilized even after the price increase.
The USPS reported a $6.5 billion net loss for fiscal year 2023 in November, falling short of its initial goal to break even. Despite the adjustments, the postal service asserts that its prices remain competitive on a global scale, maintaining affordability for its users.