USPS: Slight increase in cost of Forever stamps

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Forever stamps will soon cost 50 cents, an increase of one penny.

Postcard stamps are also going up a cent to 35 cents, and the U.S. Postal Service’s flat rate envelopes and boxes will cost consumers 5 cents more to send.

Christine Dugas, a spokesperson for USPS, said the price increase is necessary.

“The Postal Service, since 1971 when it was formed, keeps its rates at the cost of the Consumer Price Index,” Dugas explained. “It goes by what the market is. It goes by our expenses increasing, transportation, gas, that sort of thing.”

“They aren’t very high increases but they help us with our overall expenses,” she added.

According to its annual report to Congress, USPS lost $2.7 billion in the fiscal year 2017.

“Letter mail has declined by double-digits; however, package mail has increased,” Dugas said. “The internet has really impacted us because people pay their bills online, their taxes online, everybody does a lot of things now online.”

“But they also shop online, so that’s good because it increases our package volume,” she added.

The new rates will go into effect Jan. 21.

Susan Campbell (scampbell@wpri.com) is the Call 12 for Action and Target 12 consumer investigator for WPRI 12 and Fox Providence. Follow her on Twitter and on Facebook.