Revealing the household item that will shoot up in price, Martin Lewis has told Brits to urgently stock up on this everyday item.
Martin Lewis has urged people to stock up on a common, essential item that usually costs £1.10 but will increase. People are encouraged to do this before ethe price change on October 2 by Martin’s website Money-Saving Expert. First-class stamp prices will increase by 14 per cent for standard-sized letters on this date from £1.10 to £1.25. Meanwhile, first-class stamps for large letters will go from £1.60 to £1.95, an increase of 22 percent.
Importantly, second-class stamps for standard letters will stay the same at 75 (though they did just go up in April). For large letters, it'll go from £1.15 to £1.55, an increase of 35 per cent. The cost of Royal Mail's “Signed For” and “Special Delivery Guaranteed” services will also increase from the same date, as will its Parcelforce “Worldwide Next Day” and “Two Day UK” services.
Martin Lewis, founder of MoneySavingExpert.com, said: "For years, every time stamps go up in price I've suggested people stock up and bulk-buy in advance, as provided the stamp doesn't have a price on it and instead just says the postage class, it's still valid after the hike. This has been an effective tactic, as a first-class letter stamp is now £1.10, soon to be rising to £1.25 – in 2012 it was just 60p. So you may as well stock up now, even if it's just for Christmas cards for the next few Christmases."
Royal Mail blames the latest hikes on increasing cost pressures and the universal service obligation, which currently requires it to deliver letters to all UK addresses six days a week. The postal service said: "The cost of delivering an ever-decreasing number of letters to an ever-growing number of households six days a week is unsustainable." Another alternative is to consider using cheaper second-class stamps where you can, particularly on standard sized letters, as these prices aren't changing in October.
You can also no longer use non-barcoded stamps according to Martin Lewis’ website, but you can still exchange them using Royal Mail's “Swap Out” scheme. On 31 July, Royal Mail scrapped everyday non-barcoded stamps – the ones that feature a profile of the Queen's head – in favour of barcoded versions. You can no longer use non-barcoded stamps, but you can exchange them for new barcoded versions for free.
There is currently no deadline on when you need to complete the swap by, but we suggest doing it sooner rather than later in case the scheme closes. You'll need to complete a standard “Swap Out” form for stamps worth up to £200, or a Bulk Stamp 'Swap Out' form for stamps worth more than £200 which you can find on the Royal Mail website.