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Stamp Prices to Increase in January

The U.S. Postal Service is raising the cost of stamps for first class letters by one cent.

It's going to cost a little bit more to mail that letter the next time you go to the post office in Bensalem.

The cost of a standard, first class stamp will increase by one penny, from 45 cents to 46 cents, on Jan. 27, 2013, the U.S. Postal Service reports. This will be the second year in a row that the cost of stamps have increased by one cent.

The Postal Service urges its customers to purchase Forever Stamps at 45 cents per stamp before the price change, as the cost of the Forever Stamp will also increase to 46 cents on Jan. 27. However, once purchased, the Forever Stamps can be used indefintely and will remain applicable for one-ounce letters, even when postage rates go up.

A new, Global Forever Stamp will also be available for consumers. With these stamps, any letter can be shipped anywhere overseas for the flat rate of $1.10.

Other services that have also increased rates, according to stamps.com, include:

  • A one cent increase to 33 cents from 32 cents for postcards
  • Express Mail will increase an average of 5.9 percent
  • Priority Mail prices will increase an average of 6.3 percent. Online discounted rates will increase 3.7 percent
  • Rates for First Class Package Service will see an average increase of 3 percent
  • Parcel Post (renamed Standard Post) will increase an average of 6.3 percent
  • Parcel Select will increase an average of 9 percent
  • Certified Mail will increase by 5.1 percent

Since the national postal service does not receive funding from taxpayer money, the department relies on sales of its products and services to maintain its operating budget. Federal law says that the post office can raise prices based only on the inflation rate, which is 2.7 percent. Anything more has to be approved by Congress.

According to USA Today, the Postal Service reported an annual loss of $15.9 billion in November, tripling the $5.1 billion loss in 2011. Approximately $11 billion of the loss is tied to labor expenses, primarily from a law passed by Congress in 2006 that requires the Postal Service to fully prepay the retirement health care fund for the next 75 years by 2016. 

FedEx and UPS also announced rate increases for 2013. According to Reuters, the average cost for ground shipments and home deliveries will rise 4.9 percent for FedEx and 4.9 percent for UPS.

Bensalem Post Office Locations:

  • 1800 Byberry Rd.
  • 1950 Street Rd.

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