Stat of the day: 55p

The price of a second-class stamp could rise by more than half under new proposals.

Last Updated: 09 Oct 2013

It’s time to go paperless, chaps. The price of stamps is set to soar later this year as Ofcom grants Royal Mail powers to set its own prices.

Your postal habit could start costing you dear. Indulging in a second class stamp could set you back between 45 and 55p (currently they’re 36p), while Royal Mail refuses to suggest a price ceiling for the first class stamp. At 46p, our first class stamp is currently among the cheapest in Europe.

Ofcom, the postal service’s new regulator, says the rises are necessary to safeguard the six-day-a-week service and to maintain standard delivery prices across the UK.
Let’s face it, Royal Mail could do with the extra cash. The number of letters delivered every day slumped by 22m to 62m between 2006 and 2010, and the nation’s postie reported a loss of £120m last year.

Richard Hooper, who conducted the review into the postal service’s future, welcomed the regulator’s suggestion to allow Royal Mail to set its own prices. Although he seemed slightly surprised by the move: ‘Ofcom giving up price controls is the equivalent of Don Giovanni giving up sex,’ he said.

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