Technological advancement has led to the introduction of modern communication channels such as emails, social media, sales, and online bills. However, the move towards modernity has come at the expense of traditional mailing. People no longer send letters, invoices, or cards using postal services as frequently as they used to. If you’re such a person, you’re likely to be slapped with a consistently rising postal charge every time you use the mailing service.
The rising cost of postal charges is because inflation actively affects the service. As a result, the cost of sending a parcel is likely to increase every year as inflation rises.
If today you bought a bunch of regular stamps and use them next year, you may be required to add one or two cents worth of stamps to match the updated price of stamps. The same may apply to entrepreneurs who regularly use postal services when sending their e-commerce products. They may have to incur an added cost of sending parcels, making their business model unsustainable due to an inconsistent increase in expenses. Therefore, to avoid any surprise cost and the related stress on your budget, it’s recommended you use the forever stamp.
This article will look into the stamp, how it works, and its current value for those who may consider using a Forever Stamp.
What Is The Forever Stamp?
The forever stamp gets its name from its utility which transcends time. Its utility is forever hence the name forever stamp. If you purchase a forever stamp today at USD$0.42 and its value rises to, say, USD$0.50 within the next two years, you can still use this stamp two years later without having to incur an added cost.
Unlike other stamps, the value of a forever stamp isn’t printed on it. This is one of its distinct features to tell it apart from other types of stamps. This type of stamp was introduced in 2007 to be used when mailing first-class letters weighing less than one ounce. By 2011, this type of stamp had gained so much popularity that all first-class stamps were made to be forever stamps.
Although today there’s a chance you may purchase a first-class stamp with its value stamped, you’d have to purchase them in bulks of say 500-1000 stamps. However, this is an added cost since the next time you need to use the stamps, you’ll most likely have to top up to attain the value of a stamp.
The Value Of Forever Stamp In 2022
Although the new year has come with an increase in the cost of using Priority mail services by 3%, the value of the forever stamp has remained constant from last year’s. Therefore, as of January 2022, the forever stamp value is at USD$0.58, with no expected increase within the year.
The stamp value was increased on August 29th, 2021, from USD$0.55 to the current value, USD$0.58. Over the past ten years, the use of mail services has reduced by 28%. This reduction means that the income collected is significantly low. Therefore, the company’s sustainability is threatened, risking the closure of Postal services altogether. Thus, in a bid to save the company, the CEO Louis Dejoy said that the cost of services was increased to collect more income that helps in running the United States Postal Service (USPS)
Please note that the value of your forever stamp is similar to the price of the domestic first-class mail being used at that particular time.
So Why Not Just Increase The Cost Of Forever Stamps?
As discussed above, postal services have continued to increase over the years due to two main reasons
- To ensure the business model is sustainable and operational
You may be wondering if USPS needs more income and they can collect it from selling stamps, why do they allow the use of old forever stamps? Why don’t they print new forever stamps with updated prices to cover their income requirement? Well, that’s a fair argument. However, the cost of printing and using new stamps would be higher than the cost of using old forever stamps.
To start, if Postal Servies decides to print new stamps, they’ll first have to track down all old stamps each time the prices change. This will ensure that people don’t use old stamps instead of new ones. USPS would also need to destroy the old stamps. Bearing in mind that delivery charges are constantly changing, tracking, collecting, and destroying the old stamps would be more expensive than using old forever stamps.
When Can I Use The Forever Stamp?
As mentioned at the start of the article, the forever stamp was initially meant to send for first-class letters weighing less than one ounce. However, due to its growing popularity, its uses have also increased. Consider using a forever stamp in the following situations:
- Sending an international mail– for international deliveries, the cost is high, and hence you can use a forever stamp but only if you attach additional postages to match the price of international mailing.
- Sending a big letter– if you have an oversized letter and you don’t want to waste your forever stamps, you may use the stamps to send the letter. However, you’ll also have to attach the additional postages until they match the required cost of the specific weight of the letter.
That said, note that for each additional ounce, you’re charged USD$0.20. Therefore, when sending weight letters, using forever stamps may not be necessarily cost-effective. You would rather use a mix of regular stamps that match the needed price.
Where Can I Get A Forever Stamp?
Forever stamps come in rolls, sheets, or booklets made of 20 pages. They’re available at all post offices nationwide. You can buy them physically when posting the mail or online at usps.com. Alternatively, for online services, consider calling the USPS line 1-800-782-6724. It’s recommended that you buy the forever stamps in bulk. It’s the only way to enjoy their utility anyway.
To Wrap It Up!
Forever stamps adopt their name from their timeless use. A stamp bought today can be used three years from now Therefore, they’re very beneficial for people who don’t consistently use postal services and people looking to save on cost, especially since postal services are subject to inflation. Although the value of forever stamps was increased, there haven’t been any more changes in 2022, and none is expected within the year. Therefore, if you haven’t invested in these types of stamps, today would be a good day to buy them before their price increases again.