USPS Postage Price Changes: January 2021

By | January 26, 2021
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The United States Postal Service (USPS) has announced that certain postage prices will increase on January 24, 2021. Fortunately, there’s no need to sprint out and buy up the stamps at your local post office. The price increases for 2021 will not affect the price of First Class stamps, so all of the stamps in your desk drawer will still be acceptable for standard letters in 2021.

This article provides a detailed breakdown of how USPS postage prices will shift in 2021 and insight into how and why price changes occur.

Why is the Cost of Postage Changing?

USPS postage prices are reviewed by the Postal Service Board of Governors each year. Any price increases are based on consumer price indexes and approved by the Postal Service Board of Governors.

Unlike many other countries, USPS does not receive tax dollars for operating expenses and instead relies on the sale of postage, products, and services to fund its operation. Therefore, prices are changed to keep USPS competitive while also providing the agency with the revenue it needs.

To learn more about the history and operations of USPS, check out History of the US Post Office.

How are Postage Prices Changing in 2021?

The cost of both domestic and international postage is subject to change in 2021. The tables below compare the 2020 and 2021 prices for letters, flat rate envelopes, and packages.

In addition to the postage increases, the following changes are also being made within the USPS postage system:

  • USPS accepts boxes that weigh up to 70 pounds and do not exceed 130-inches in length plus girth. In 2021, packages that exceed these limits will now be accepted, but a $100 overweight/oversize surcharge will be added to the cost of shipping.
  • When shipping internationally, the cost of postage is determined based on the group in which a country is located. In 2021, the number of country groups will be increased to allow postage prices to be more specialized based on where your shipments are going. This may save you money or cost you more, depending on your final destination.

2021 letter Prices

Letters2020 Postage Rates2021 Postage Rates
First-Class Mail Letter (up to 1-ounce)$0.55$0.55
First-Class Mail Letter (each additional ounce over 1-ounce)$0.15$0.20
First-Class Mail Flat/Large Envelope (1-ounce)$1.00$1.00
First-Class Mail Flat/Large Envelope (each additional ounce over 1-ounce)$0.20$0.20
Postcard$0.35$0.35

2021 Flat Rate Envelope Prices

Flat Rate Envelopes2020 Postage Rates2021 Postage Rates
Priority Mail Express Flat Rate Envelope$26.35$26.35
Priority Mail Express Legal Flat Rate Envelope$26.50$26.50
Priority Mail Express Padded Flat Rate Envelope$26.95$26.95
Priority Mail Flat Rate Envelope$7.75$7.95
Priority Mail Legal Flat Rate Envelope$8.05$8.25
Priority Mail Padded Flat Rate Envelope$8.40$8.55

2021 Package Prices

Packages2020 Postage Rates2021 Postage Rates
First-Class Package Service (up to 1-ounce)$3.80 and up$4.00 and up
Library Mail (up to 1-pound)$2.66$2.75
Media Mail (up to 1-pound)$2.80$2.89
Priority Mail APO/FPO/DPO Large Flat Rate Box$19.60$20.40
Priority Mail (up to 1-pound)$7.50 and up$7.70 and up
Priority Mail Express$26.35 and up$26.35 and up
Priority Mail Small Flat Rate Box$8.30$8.45
Priority Mail Medium Flat Rate Box$15.05$15.50
Priority Mail Large Flat Rate Box$21.10$21.90
Priority Mail Regional Rate Box A$9.98 and up$10.13 and up
Priority Mail Regional Rate Box B$10.37 and up$10.53 and up
Retail Ground (formerly Standard Post, up to 1-pound)$7.50 and up$7.70 and up

2021 International Package Prices

International2020 Postage Rates2021 Postage Rates
Global Express Guaranteed (0.5-pound)$67.80 and up$67.80 and up
Priority Mail Express International (0.5-pound)$49.95 and up$49.95 and up
Priority Mail Express International Flat Rate Envelopes (to Canada)$45.95 and up$45.95 and up
Priority Mail Express International Flat Rate Envelopes (to other countries)$61.65 and up$62.95 and up
Priority Mail International (up to 1-pound to Canada)$36.35 and up$37.60 and up
Priority Mail International (up to 1-pound to other countries)$44.50 and up$46.95 and up
Priority Mail International Flat Rate Envelopes (to Canada)$26.90$28.50
Priority Mail International Flat Rate Envelopes (to other countries)$33.75 and up$35.45 and up
Priority Mail International Small Flat Rate Box (to Canada)$27.90$29.55
Priority Mail International Small Flat Rate Box (to other countries)$35.35 and up$37.10 and up
Priority Mail International Medium Flat Rate Box (to Canada)$51.55$54.65
Priority Mail International Medium Flat Rate Box (to other countries)$75.95 and up$79.75 and up
Priority Mail International Large Flat Rate Box (to Canada)$67.05$71.05
Priority Mail International Large Flat Rate Box (to other countries)$99.10 and up$104.05 and up
First-Class Package International Service (up to 1-pound to Canada)$20.75$21.25
First-Class Package International Service (up to 1-pound to Mexico)$21.72$21.75
First-Class Package International Service (up to 1-pound to other countries)$24.50 and up$24.50 and up
First-Class Mail International Letters (up to 1-ounce to Canada and Mexico)$1.20$1.20
First-Class Mail International Letters (up to 1-ounce to other countries)$1.20$1.20

2021 Additional Price Changes

Additional Price Changes2020 Rates2021 Rates
Basic Adult Signature$6.65$6.90
Certified Mail$3.55$3.60
Certificate of Mailing$1.50$1.55
Electronic Return Receipt$1.70$1.75
Mail Return Receipt$2.85$2.85
Registered Mail$12.60 and up$12.90 and up
Restricted Delivery$5.30$5.40
Return Receipt for Merchandise$4.30Discontinued
Package Intercept$14.65$15.25
Person-Specific Adult Signature$6.90$7.15
Signature Confirmation$3.15$3.20

For more information about how much stamps cost, as well as where to purchase stamps near you, visit www.mystampguide.com.

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