As you select your wedding invitations, remember that you will also need to purchase postage stamps. The cost of the stamp for your outer envelope will be entirely determined by the size, shape, and weight of your invitation and the accompanying enclosures. If you are including traditional reply cards, be sure to attach a stamp to the petite envelope/post card as well. Remember to purchase postage only after you receive your printed wedding invitations and can have the post office weigh your assembled sample.
Estimating the actual cost of postage can be difficult, but there are a few guidelines you should keep in mind that will impact overall pricing:
– The size and shape of your invitations directly impacts cost. The United States Postal Service considers postcards to have approximate dimensions between 5 x 3.5 and 6 x 4.25 inches. A letter is considered to be between 5.5 x 3.5 and 11.5 x 6.125 inches. Note that square, round and extra-heavy invitations will be charged a premium.
– Your international guests will need special attention and proper postage. Postage rates vary by country, with rates to Western European countries currently averaging about $1.15 for a 1-ounce letter. Discuss specific needs with your local postmaster.
– Adding any type of bulk to an envelope in the form of bows, ribbons or appliques may result in a need to hand cancel your invitation suite. Hand cancelling is an additional charge of $0.21 imposed for items that will not fit through the traditional postal machines. It’s important to alert the postmaster of your hand cancel request when weighing to ensure your envelopes are not damaged by their machines. Square, thick, or larger envelopes may also require hand cancelling.
Only stamped envelopes or postcards weighing less than 13 ounces can be put in an unattended location. Items exceeding 13 ounces and bearing stamps as postage will need to go to a retail counter at a Post Office, Contract Postal Unit, or Approved Shipper location.
Remember to ask questions of your Postmaster when in doubt. The invitation is the very first preview of your big day! The goal is to deliver your beautiful invitations promptly and securely so you make the best possible first impression.