Postage Rates Set To Increase

After lodging a request in February with the ACCC, Australia Post has been granted approval to increase the basic postage rate from 60 cents to 70 cents. The increase will come into affect as of the 31st of March pending ministerial notification processes. In addition to this increase, Australia post will also increase postage rates for selected business letters, parcel post, personalised stamps, mail redirection, mail hold services and packaging products.

Effective 31st of March, the basic postage stamp will now cost consumers 70 cents, a 10c rise from the original 60c rate. A concession rate will also be introduced allowing eligible consumers to register for an Australia Post concession card to access this special rate. Australia Post has only increased the BPR three times over the past 22 year with the last being in 2010. The last rise to pre-paid parcel delivery, which is unregulated, was in April 2013 and post office boxes in February 2014.
“The current stamp price no longer reflects the true cost of delivering each letter and stamp price increases have not kept up with inflation,” said Ahmed Fahour, Managing Director & CEO of Australia Post.

“This 10 cent increase will allow us to partially offset the growing losses that we are seeing in our letters business. At 70 cents the Australian domestic stamp will remain among one of the lowest prices in the OECD.”

Australia Post’s CEO has contributed the price rise to a 6.4% decrease in domestic letter postage. The slump in demand has seen a loss of $147 Million in 2012/13 fin year to it’s domestic mail business. However, with Australian’s spending more the $13 Billion shopping online in the last financial year, Australia Post has seen an increase of 9.3% in it’s parcel post delivery. Australia Post raised it’s total revenue by 20.8% in the last financial year.

Changes for business customers

Business customers will also be affected with rises to business letter services as well as the introduction of a new delivery timetable. The new timetable will allows business customers to choose between regular and priority mail. This timetable will apply to imprint mail, metered mail, clean mail and local country letters. Regular delivery for metro to metro delivery in the same state will now take 2-3 business days. At an extra cost, business customers can choose priority mail, which for the same delivery area would take 1 business day. Business letter changes will come into affect as of the 2nd of June.

Pre-Sort and Surface Mail

Pre-sort and charity mail customers will also use the two level timetable. Surface mail will be replaced by the regular timetable and will no longer need to appear on mail.

Priority and Regular Delivery Imprints

The product and delivery schedule that business customers choose will alter the way mail is prepared. When using the priority delivery timetable all envelopes will need to have a new Priority Postage Paid imprint. This new imprint does not need to be used until the implementation period which is between 2 June – 31 Dec 2014 however, during this period old postage paid imprints can still be used. The new imprints will be mandatory from 1st January 2015. These are important dates to remember when making your next envelope order.

Franking Machines and Metered Mail 

Australia Post are currently working with meter suppliers to ensure the Priority Postage Paid imprint will be available to metered mail customers.

Pack and Track Customers

New destinations will be made available to Pack and Track customers, with 15 more countries being added to the service. These countries include Belgium, Croatia, Denmark, Estonia, France, Hong Kong, Hungary, Korea, Republic of (South Korea), Lithuania, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovenia & Sweden.

More information on how these changes will affect your business and resources to help your business transition to the new guidelines will be available over the coming weeks.