What Is A Postage Meter and What Are The Average Postage Meter Rates?

Did you know that postage meter rates are cheaper than postage stamps? What’s more, you save 5 cents on every letter. 

In 1884, a Frenchman was given the British government’s patent for a machine that would print postage on envelopes. Still, it wasn’t until 1902 that Arthur Pitney privately patented the first commercial postage meter. This machine changed how mail rooms operated. 

What Is a Postage Meter? 

A mailing system that prints postage directly on an envelope is known as a postage meter. It works for any type of mail,  first, second, third, or fourth class; special delivery, registered mail,  airmail, or other specific services. 

The machine is made up of several mechanisms that include: 

The Meter: This part of the systems is the most essential because it prints the indicia and keeps the postage. 

The Base: The base handles the envelopes and is made to move the envelope through the meter for stamping. It has four essential parts that consist of the feeder, stacker, sealer, and the tape dispenser. 

The Scale: A scale will take the weight of letters or packages and determine how much postage is needed based on current rates. Some scales automatically apply the amount, and more advanced models will check for the lowest rates to your mail’s destination.

Postage Meters for Small Businesses

If you’re running a small business, you won’t be looking for the most expensive model or one that has all the bells and whistles. Finding the right machine can be a challenge when there are so many options available. Let’s look at models that may be right for you when postage meter prices are a concern. 

If you’re managing a small office with limited space, the Datapac DP Link 10 may be a useful model for you. It takes up the least amount of space by using your computer to create a mail center and is a low-cost option. 

Next on the list of small but powerful postage meters is the Quadient IS-280. It is rated as one of the best budget meters on the market.

Postage Meter Rates

Did you know that the USPS changes its meter rates every year? Businesses stand to save 33% using a postage meter over traditional mailing. The USPS last updated its metered postage rates in January 2020 with a temporary increase in September due to COVID-19.

Postage meter rates are based on the ounces per item. Experts recommend including multiple items in each envelope for cost-effectiveness.  Besides, mailing fewer heavy items won’t be as expensive as sending many items weighing 1 oz each.

When sending out reminders, invitations, or notifications, a postcard is cheaper than a letter. When the USPS determines that first class mail is too difficult for processing, it gets a non-machinable surcharge. You can take full advantage of the continuation of the $0.21 surcharge by keeping items equal to or less than 3.5 oz that have dimensions within 1.3″ x 2.5.″

What’s Next for Postage Meter Rates

As a small business that has a busy mailroom, saving on postage meter rates is essential. We hope this article has shared information on postage meters that was helpful. Be sure to come back to read more excellent information on this site.