Royal Mail to hike price of stamps again from next month as letter volumes fall ‘dramatically’

Royal Mail first and second class stamps

Royal Mail will increase the price of first and second class stamps in April 2024

Jessica Sheldon

By Jessica Sheldon

Published: 01/03/2024

- 12:24

Updated: 08/03/2024

- 10:13

The cost of a first class book of eight stamps will cost £10.80 after the price hike next month

Royal Mail has announced it will increase the price of stamps again next month, blaming an increase in costs and a “dramatic” reduction in letter volumes.

The cost of a first-class stamp will increase by 10 pence to £1.35 from April 2.

What do you think about the price of stamps? Get in touch by emailing

A second-class stamp will cost 85p under the changes, up from the current 75 pence.

Nick Landon, chief commercial officer at Royal Mail, said: “We always consider price changes very carefully, but we face a situation where letter volumes have reduced dramatically over recent years while costs have increased.

GB NEWS INVESTIGATION: Innocent Britons forced to pay Royal Mail charge after Post Office sells counterfeit stamps

“It is no longer sustainable to maintain a network built for 20 billion letters when we are now only delivering seven billion.

“As a result of letter volume decline, our posties now have to walk more than three times as far to deliver the same number of letters as before, increasing the delivery costs per letter.”

A first-class stamp cost 95 pence this time last year, before being hiked to £1.10 in April 2023, and then £1.25 in October.

Morgan Wild, Interim Director of Policy at Citizens Advice, said: “Inflation has impacted everything we buy, so these price increases couldn’t come at a worse time. But while average product prices have risen by 22 per cent since 2019, the price of a first-class stamp has soared, almost doubling in that time.

“Royal Mail is choosing to hike prices at a time when millions are left waiting for letters - vital medical appointments, legal documents and benefit decisions - all thanks to post delays. Nobody should be paying more for an unreliable service.

“Ofcom should be holding Royal Mail to account, but it’s letting the company get away with rocketing prices and nearly half a decade of missed delivery targets. Enough is enough, it's time for the regulator to act.”

Last year, industry regulator Ofcom said increases to the price of second-class stamps would be capped at the rate of inflation until 2029, to try to keep the sending of letters more affordable.

It comes just over a month after Ofcom said Royal Mail could be permitted to reduce its letter deliveries to five or three days a week.

The regulator warned the UK postal service risked becoming "unsustainable" without reform.

Royal Mail vans in pictures

Royal Mail said the average adult now spends less than £7 per year on stamped letters


Royal Mail, which is owned by International Distributions Services (IDS), recorded a £419million loss in its previous financial year.

It was fined £5.6million last year for failing to meet its delivery targets.

The volume of letters sent has fallen from 20 billion in 2004/05 to seven billion a year in 2022/23 but the number of addresses has increased by four million in the same period, Royal Mail said.

The delivery giant said the average adult now spends less than £7 a year on stamped letters and people now get two letters per week on average.

European mean average prices for first-class stamps stand at £1.66, and £1.26 for second-class, Royal Mail said.

You may like