My Two Cents on Postal Rate Increases

bla-twocentstamp.jpgSo, it’s time for quarterly taxes. I know, I thought they were due on the 15th, but that was a Sunday, and thought they were due on Monday, but that was a holiday.

Here it is, Tuesday the 17th and I’d damn well better get those payments in the mail.

But maybe all I have is a bunch of 37 cent stamps and realized that the postal rates went up to 39 cents for a standard letter on the 8th. I toodled off to the post office at lunch today to pick up some 2 cent stamps so that I can finish out the rest of my 37 cent stamps (a book that will probably last me for the rest of the year).

I figured the Post Office on Santa Monica at Wilcox was gonna be busy, with the rate change and all, so I brought two dollars in silver so that I could use the vending machines.

Oh, how wrong was I?

bla-postalrates.jpgI arrived and found the lot full, no biggie, I’ll park on Wilcox.

I entered the post office and made a bee line for the vending machines. They had no option to buy any two cent stamps. The big machine was still selling books of 37 cent stamps. So I spied that I could buy single postage at one of the machines which was a 37 cent stamp and a 2 cent stamp. I would buy two of those, use the 2 centers and keep the 37 cent ones for later use with other 2 cent stamps. Not so fast! The machine didn’t take change and wouldn’t make change.

So, I got in line. There were about eight people in front of me.

I waited.

As I looked around I noticed that there was information about the new postal rates. (I had plenty of time, the line took 25 minutes.) There were two posters that had the postal rates that were effective as of June 2002 … but nothing for the new rates. Was I nuts? Did this new rate not go into effect? (see photo)

As I got up to the front of the line there was one poster on a door that said “employees only” that mentioned the new rates going into effect as of January 8th. But that was it. Everything else was advertising the old rates.

I got up to the clerk and purchased my 2 cent stamps and a new book of 39 cent stamps for good measure and then confirmed that this was in fact the current rate. She confirmed it (I have no ill will towards the clerks, I didn’t think she was in charge of the vending machines or the posters). I mentioned the posters and she made some comment about them not having the new posters yet! And that very few machines around town had the proper postage in them.


So, I took my purchases and found a little spot to paste on the new stamps … and accidentally put 39 cent ones on the already 37 cent stamped letters. Doh! Who’s the stupid one now? At least my taxes are in the mail.

One thought on “My Two Cents on Postal Rate Increases”

  1. I’ve always found the location at SM/Wilcox to be incredibly slow. I have more luck at the one at Selma/Wilcox, if you can afford the 2 mile detour.

    That said the Selma/Wilcox location did not have new signage yet, either.

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