One of the most overlooked and least understood aspects of stationery is the postage required to send it. Particularly with wedding stationery, it is important that you understand the postage your invitations need so that you don’t end up with an unexpected expense at the post office, or worse, your invitations all being returned because the postage wasn’t enough.
We want your stationery process to be as easy as possible, so we’ve created this definitive guide for all you need to know about posting your wedding stationery.
(Side note- these are the new 2019 prices that take effect January 27th. If you are reading this before January 27th, run to the post office right after you finish reading to purchase your stamps before the price increases!!)
Postcards are a great option for save the dates or even RSVP cards because they don’t require envelopes and have cheaper postage than letters. If your postcard is at or smaller than 6”x4.25” you will only pay $0.35 per piece. If it is larger, a standard forever stamp is required.
Basic 2-Piece Invitation Suites
Most standard invitation suites with an invitation and rsvp card with envelope will require the standard forever stamp, which as of January 27th will be $0.55 each. Our invitations printed on our most commonly used paper, Accent 120 lb. Cover, will be fine to mail at this standard price. If you want to upgrade to a thicker paper or include additional enclosure cards, it may put the weight over 1oz and require additional postage.
3+ Piece Invitation Suites and Upgraded paper
If you choose to print with a thicker or duplexed paper (two sheets glued together), or are including multiple enclosures or decorative elements like a belly band or pocket invitation, you will likely have to pay additional postage. Each additional ounce will add $0.15 to the total needed postage for each envelope. We recommend taking a fully assembled suite to your post office to get an accurate weight and price estimate. You can find postage calculators online but this is the only way to be confident that you will have the right amount of postage.
Odd Shape or Bulky Envelopes
Since standard mail is run through a machine, if you have an odd shaped envelope it will have to be “canceled” (aka processed) by hand and not with the machine. The post office considers square envelopes to be an odd size, so you will have to pay an additional $0.15 per piece for square invitations. If your card is bulky, say if you use a wax seal or ribbon, you will also have to pay to have them hand-processed and you will likely have to pay additional postage for the added weight and thickness.
Even if your invitations are not bulky or odd-shaped, you may want to consider having them hand-canceled. To do this you will still have to pay the extra $0.15 each, but it may be worth it to ensure that your beautiful invitations aren’t torn or soiled by the machines. Talk to your local postmaster about this option, sometimes they will even allow you to hand cancel them yourself with a stamp, so you can personally see that they are handled with care.
Don’t forget to account for RSVP stamps! It is polite to include the stamp for your guests and it is also more likely that they will RSVP on time with the card ready to be mailed.
Postage can seem overwhelming at first but it doesn’t have to be. Keep it simple with these steps:
1. Take a fully assembled invitation to your post office to have it weighed and to see if it needs to be hand-canceled.
2. Purchase the stamps that your post office worker says you need.
3. Adhere your stamps and hand-cancel if desired, or hand them off to your post office.
That’s it! With a little care and attention, you can ensure that you won’t be surprised by postage and that your carefully designed and assembled invitations arrive just as beautiful as they were when mailed.