Mailing a letter is going to be costlier as the US Postal Service has decided to raise the cost. The new prices are expected to be applicable from August. The rates of postcards and other mail services too will go up. Once implemented, the first-class mailing will cost 58 cents. At present, the cost of a stamp for first-class mailing is 55 cent. The increase is within the range of recent years and is part of Postmaster Louis DeJoy’s 10-year overhaul plan with an eye on improving the failing finances of the agency. DeJoy has been pursuing some sweeping changes. However, his tenure has been marred with controversies.
DeJoy was appointed by former President Donald Trump. He announced a 10-year plan for the USPS in March this year. Among the most important changes are longer first-class mail delivery times and cutting post office hours across the country. However, the postmaster has faced criticism for slowing down the mail delivery during the presidential elections in the United States last year. It must be noted that DeJoy was one of the donors to the former president. DeJoy has said that the 10-year plan will help the agency achieve financial sustainability and service excellence. “For the past over one decade, USPS had very limited pricing authority. Under this 10-year plan, the Postal Service and the Board of Governors will adopt a rational pricing approach. That will not only help the agency remain viable and competitive but also one of the most affordable postal services in the world.”
Over the past several years, there has been a consistent increase in stamp prices. For example, mailing a letter used to cost just 49 cent in 2017. It was increased to 50 cent in 2018 and then to 55 cent in 2019. The new prices will come into effect on August 20, however, it is subject to approval from the Postal Regulatory Commission. According to a release by the agency, first-class mail service will cost more by 6.8 percent. “The increase has been decided to offset the decline in the revenue of the agency due to decline in the volume of first-class mail.” According to the release, the mail volume has declined by 46 billion pieces in the past 10 years.