A Forever Stamp (one ounce First Class stamp that auto-adjusts to the current postage rate) is currently worth $0.50. The last rate change occurred on January 21, 2018.
I anticipate the next rate change will occur in May of 2018, or January of 2019.
If you are subscribed to my notification list (see below), I will send out a notice a week or two prior to the rate increase so you can make sure you have a good supply of stamps prior to the increase.
Some other rates:
Scroll down the page to see historical rates, post-card rates, as well as a few sample oversize rates.
|2 oz.||$0.71||1x Forever stamp + $0.21|
|3 oz.||$0.92||1x Forever stamp + $0.42, or, simply 2x Forever Stamps (which results in a $.08 donation to the Post Office)|
*Note: must be rectangular, cannot be square, rigid, or an odd shape.
|1 oz.||$1.00||Two Forever Stamps|
|2 oz.||$1.21||Two Forever Stamps + $0.21|
|3 oz.||$1.42||Two Forever Stamps + $0.42, or, three Forever Stamps (which results in a $.08 donation to the Post Office)|
|4 oz.||$1.63||Three Forever Stamps + $0.13|
**Note: must be rectangular or square, and must not be rigid or contain items that cause more than 1/4" variation in thickness.
Visit the United States Post Office web site for additional rules, regulations, and mailing options.
By the way, if you sign up for a free 30-day trial of Amazon Prime, this web site will receive $3 from Amazon:
|January 21, 2018||$0.50|
|January 22, 2017||$0.49|
|April 10, 2016||$0.47|
|January 26, 2014||$0.49|
|January 27, 2013||$0.46|
|January 22, 2012||$0.45|
|May 11, 2009||$0.44|
Forever Stamps are a special type of stamp created by the United States Post Office that will always be worth one First Class stamp. When they were initially created in 2007 a Forever Stamp cost only $0.41. Their value has increased since then and they are now worth significantly more. Remember how you used to have buy $0.01 or $0.02 stamps to cover postage cost increases? That is a thing of the past with Forever Stamps!
The cost of a first class stamp varies, with the price being adjusted (typically once every year or so) by the Post Office. The current rate is $0.50 (see above for historical values). By purchasing a "Forever Stamp", the stamp's value will adjust to match whatever the then-current postage rate is for a one ounce stamp.
Yes, they do. It's available here: USPS Postage Price Calculator. Around May of 2017 the calculator was updated to make it easier to use, but, WOW, for calculating postage for letters/envelopes it became MUCH more difficult to use. And, yes, what do you expect? It's a government-created web site :-) All kidding aside, it works quite well for Priority mail and packages. If you are looking up the price for a letter, on the first screen, make sure you select the icon titlted "Calculate price based on Shape and Size".
In 2018 the cost to mail a standard size postcard is 35 cents ($0.35). The postcard can be no larger than 6 inches by 4.25 inches.
Forever Stamps are a type of "non-denominated postage". While I do not know for sure which country was first, I do know that the United Kingdom began issuing non-denominated postage stamps back in 1989. The United States Postal Service launched "Forever Stamps" in 2007. In addition, the USPS had been issuing generic stamps close to rate changes that could be used before and after the rate change starting back in the 1970's. The practice continued in more recent years with stamps that began with a letter: A, B, or C, and continued up through the letter H.
In 2018 the cost for each additional ounce of postage is 21 cents ($0.21).
You have quite a few options for puchasing postage online. The obvious option is to buy stamps directly from the Post Office. They do charge $1 for shipping/handling your order.
Another option (which helps support this site) is to sign up for an account at Stamps.com. You can get a special postage offer with a $100 value by using code COUPON1.
You can also buy stamps from Amazon.com (which helps support this site). The Post Office is actually one of the stamp sellers at Amazon.com. If you buy stamps at Amazon.com you will likely pay a little bit more than if you bought them directly from the post office, but if you are a member of Amazon Prime (free trial available), you won't have to pay the $1 shipping and handling fee that the Post Office charges if you order directly from the USPS.
How does clicking an Amazon link help this site?
By clicking any Amazon link above (a new window will open), any product you order from Amazon within 24 hours (doesn't matter what the product is) will generate a small referral credit back to my site. You may not think simply clicking a link helps, but it does. Thank you very much for your support!
Because the value of a Forever Stamp increases with the rate of inflation (and might even at a higher rate than inflation in the future), the question arises: should you buy more stamps than you will be using to mail letters as an asset diversification strategy and hedge against inflation?
You're welcome to do so, and there are other online financial resources that discuss doing do so. However, in this space, I want to share a few considerations to keep in mind should you be contemplating such a strategy:
If a future increase is going to be significant, there will be time to purchase any stamps that you'll need (even a multi-year supply) before the rates increase. Signing up for my notification list is one way to be notified.
Anytime you are looking to invest into a particular asset, you want to keep in mind the principles of supply and demand. The greater the demand and the lower the supply - the more your asset will increase in value. First Class Mail Volume has been steadily decreasing for years. Think about how many bills you used to pay via mail that are now electronically paid, and how many letters you used to mail to stay in touch with friends or relatives? First Class mail volume has steadily decreased over the past twenty years and will likely continue to do so.
There are currently many counterfeit Forever Stamps readily available at a discount to the full price of genuine stamps. If you invest significant resources into Forever Stamps, while, yes, you "cash out" your investment one stamp at a time when you mail a letter, selling a larger volume of stamps:
Some who are investing in stamps as a currency hedge are doing so in the event that extreme economic challenges may occur in our society, or that societal disruption or upheaval will some day occur. While no one wants that to occur, there is always the possibility that those events may occur. If the Postal Service and the US Government cease to exist as we know them, I believe the value of Forever Stamps will significantly decrease, perhaps to the point of being worthless. While, yes, delivery services of some sort will always exist, who is to say that they will accept a USPS Forever Stamp as a form of payment. If you are investing in Forever Stamps and are concerned that society, as we know it, may cease to exist, keep in mind that the value of Forever Stamps is primarily contingent on the Postal Service continuing to function.
I recommend you buy one year's worth of stamps before any regular stamp price increase. If a significant stamp price increase is announced my recommendation will be to consider buying multiple years' worth of stamps at that time/before that increase. You're welcome to stockpile stamps now, and it may well even prove to be a great inflation "hedge" -- just make sure you consider all of the various related factors.