Calculating Your Invitation Postage
One of the most frequent questions we get as we are finalizing wedding budgets is “how much will it cost to mail my invitations?" Let us sum up all of the different items and factors that go into calculating the correct postage for your wedding invitations to hopefully simplify this entire process for you.
Beginning with the mailing envelope for your wedding invitation suite, standard USPS postage is currently $.55 to mail a 1 ounce envelope. From there, each ounce added to the envelope will cost an additional $.21, up to 3.5 ounces. On average, wedding invitation suites weigh between 1 and 2 ounces, causing postage to be at least $.70. This, of course, all depends on how many pieces you are including in your invitation suite as well as weight of your paper and size/shape of your envelope. If you have an enclosure holding all of your pieces together, then this usually pushes the weight up over 3 ounces, costing $0.97 to mail.
Some other items that need to be taken into consideration for postage are non-machinable items. If you have wax seals, ribbon, or a super thick invitation suite, the post office is not able to run it through their standard machines to process it. Therefore, they have to process it by hand, which costs an additional $.21 on top of what it would cost based on weight. Keep in mind, even if your wax seal is on the inside of your mailing envelope, it is still non-machinable. The USPS is basically looking for anything that makes your envelope “bulge” and preventing it from running through the machine. Another factor that can cause the rate to go up is if your envelope is square or over 7” in height. The post office machine only runs envelopes that are rectangular in nature, so if it is square or over 7” in height, it will require an additional ounce rate of $.21 per envelope.
So let’s say you have an invitation that weighs 2.1 ounces and you have a wax seal in your suite, it would cost $.70 (your 1 ounce rate of $.55 + an additional ounce for $.21) + $.21 (the non-machinable rate) to equal $.97 to mail the entire suite.
Our best advice when trying to determine what it will cost to mail your suite is to take a completed suite to the post office that you intend to mail them from, and have them check it for you. They can let you know if it needs to be hand cancelled or if it will way more than 3 ounces.
So now that we’ve covered the main mailing envelopes, there are a few other pieces you will also need stamps for. Your response envelope for your RSVPs, which is generally a 3.5×5 or 4×5, and a single card that goes inside. This will only cost 1 ounce ($.55) to mail. Don’t forget to pre-stamp these for your guest! If you don't the likelihood of you getting it back decreases exponentially. Another item could possibly be your Save The Date cards. Depending on the style you’ve chosen, more than likely it will only cost the 1 ounce rate to mail, assuming you haven’t added any non-machineable items to your save the dates. If you are doing a save the date postcard (or even an RSVP postcard for that matter), the postage rate for postcards is $.35, and USPS makes a special stamp just for that.
I hope this helps explain everything that goes into mailing your beautiful wedding invitations!
Now, don't forget to stock up on those FOREVER stamps now for your upcoming wedding. The USPS always seems to increase the postage rates in January, but if you buy now, you can use those FOREVER stamps...well...forever.