Stamps: Different types of stamps for sending regular letters
Stamps: Different types of stamps for sending regular letters
Now and then you hear that the U.S. Postal Service has issued new stamps. Not only are there different designs, but there are also different prices and types of stamps. If you’re curious, you can read this article about the different types of stamps for mailing ordinary letters through the USPS.
What is the difference between postage and stamps?
For a better explanation and qualification, I would like to point out that there is a difference between postage and stamps. Postage is the fee a customer pays to have a letter or package delivered by USPS. Various postage stamps indicate that the letter or package is postage paid. Postage stamps are a type of postal stamp, and postage means more. From a production distribution perspective, postage stamps can only be issued by the USPS. Other forms of postage that look like stamps, such as “custom postage,” can be produced by private companies with USPS approval.
What are the different types of stamps for sending regular letters through USPS?
The United States Postal Service issues a variety of stamps, including definitive stamps, commemorative stamps, and holiday stamps. We will introduce these types of stamps one by one below.
Definitive stamps are stamps that are part of a country’s regular stamp issue, are sold by post offices in perpetuity, and are intended to meet the country’s daily postal needs. American flag stamps, for example, are issued year after year in unlimited quantities. These stamps come in various denominations (e.g., 4 cents, $5.00) and feature numerous images, including famous people (e.g., Presidents George Washington and Andrew Jackson), animals (e.g., birds), treasured household items (e.g., Tiffany lamps), and treasured national items (e.g., the Liberty Bell). In 2022, the Postal Service will also issue blueberries as a new 4-cent universal stamp. The final stamps will show their monetary value and will be used primarily by bulk mailers to provide additional postage when needed.
The USPS introduced forever stamps in 2007. A forever stamp costs the same as a regular first-class stamp. However, it can be used for standard envelopes weighing one ounce or less as first-class postage. So, if a customer buys a forever stamp for 58 cents and the price of a first-class stamp increase to 60 cents after 2022, the forever stamp can still be used to mail letters. Customers don’t have to pay an additional 2 cents for postage.
Each year, the USPS issues high-profile definitive stamps to honor or celebrate people, anniversaries, and things. For example, the 2012 USPS commemorative stamp features a weathervane, celebrates the centennial of the founding of New Mexico, and pays tribute to African American publisher John H. Johnson (1918-2005). The Nancy Reagan stamp, to be issued July 6, 2022, is a new stamp honoring former First Lady Nancy Reagan, who is celebrating her 100th birthday, making her the sixth First Lady to appear on a USPS stamp. The issuance of this stamp concludes a yearlong anniversary in her honor and pays tribute to Reagan’s life and contributions. Due to the COVID -19 pandemic, the centennial was postponed for one year.
Normally, each commemorative stamp is produced in limited quantities and sold for only one year. Although they are available as stamps, commemorative stamps are often held by collectors and sold privately at auctions and on the Internet.
Generally, Christmas stamps are holiday stamps. Each year, the United States Postal Service (USPS) issues new Christmas-themed stamps for the billions of Christmas cards, letters, and postcards that Americans send each year. Although the USPS barcodes the Christmas stamps, Christmas stamps without barcodes are still valid after Jan. 31, 2023, so they do not have to be thrown away. Available at your local post office or on the USPS website while supplies last. The United States Postal Service (USPS) has issued five new stamps for Christmas 2022. “Holiday Genie,” “Snow Beauty,” “Winter Bloom,” “Hanukkah” and “Kwanzaa” are the new offerings for this holiday season.
The semi-postal Stamp Program is a congressionally mandated fundraising stamp used to research issues that are “in the national public interest and appropriate” The stamp is issued by the Postal Service and sold at a premium to fund a specific cause, such as breast cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, or domestic violence prevention programs.
Semi-postage stamps cost at least 15% more than postage (known as the spread), with no upper limit. Prices are adjusted in 5-cent increments. The price of a semi-postal stamp pays the First-Class™ single postage rate in effect at the time of purchase, plus a tax-deductible amount for purposes the Postal Service deems appropriate and in the national public interest. Proceeds from the sale (less the reasonable cost of postage and postal service) are forwarded to one or more executive agencies selected by law. The USPS sells the semi-mail and then forwards a portion of the proceeds (less the cost to the USPS) to the federal agency responsible for administering the funds. The agency then uses the funds for the purposes specified by law.
How much does each type of stamps cost?
There are 14 denominations ranging from 1 cent to $5. Stamps can be purchased in various denominations, from 1, 2, and 3 cents to $25.50 (Priority Express stamp), e.g., 24 cents for an additional ounce, 44 cents for a postcard, 99 cents for a nonmachinable stamp, and 84 cents for a First Class 2 ounce stamp, etc. On June 9, 2022, the USPS announced a price increase for the stamps and more, including a $2 increase in the price of the First-Class Mail Forever stamp from 58 cents to 60 cents.
What is stamps purpose/use case?
Stamps indicate that postage has been paid for mailing. Forever Stamps are ideal for mailing regular-size (1-ounce) letters within the United States. For heavier mail, it is not practical to use two stamps in every case. It is much cheaper to use one additional ounce of stamps, only $0.24 per additional ounce. If you add two Forever Stamps to a 2-ounce letter, you pay only $0.84.
If you are mailing regular-size letters up to 2 ounces within the United States, you can purchase 2-ounce stamps to use. For some heavier wedding invitations or thank you letters, purchasing 2-ounce stamps is generally recommended. For some stamps with complicated shapes that cannot be folded, it is generally necessary to purchase 99¢ stamps that cannot be machined.
International stamps can be used to mail postcards or 1-ounce letters around the world. In addition, senders can use Global Forever stamps as postage for any type of single-piece domestic or international mail. The 2022 standard postcard stamp costs $0.44. (Large or square postcards cost more.) Place the postcard stamp in the blank space next to the delivery address
The most expensive Priority Mail Express Flat Rate Mail can be delivered to almost any address in the U.S., such as military locations and PO boxes. This class of mail is excellent for sending business and legal documents, manuscripts, clothing, books, packaged jewelry, office supplies, and shoes.