Published in The Chronicle, the journal of the Great Britain Collectors Club. Reprinted by permission.
Domestic Rates (1966-2006)
Domestic Pricing in Proportion Rates (2006-present)
International Rates (2000-present)
As a Machin collector, one of the challenges of interpreting covers is knowing the correct postal rates, particularly for such a long period. In the table below, I present a list of rates for airmail letters to the United States. For rates after April 26, 2000, see the International Rates page where the U.S. is included in Zone 1.
|First Step||Second Step||Third Step||Additional Charge for:|
|Beginning||Ending||1/2 oz||1 oz||Registered||Special Delivery|
|Jan 1, 1968||Feb 14, 1971||1/6||3/-||3/-||3/-|
|1/2 oz||1 1/2 oz|
|Feb 15, 1971
|Sep 9, 1973||7.5p||15p||20p||20p|
|Sep 10, 1973||Jun 23, 1974||8p||15p||20p||20p|
|June 24, 1974||Mar 16, 1975||8p||15p||25p||25p|
|Mar 17, 1975||Sep 28, 1975||10p||19p||35p||40p|
|Sep 29, 1975||Jun 12, 1977?||11p||22p||45p||60p|
|Jun 13, 1977||Aug 19, 1979||11p||18.5p||26p||60p||60p|
|Aug 20, 1979||Feb 3, 1980||13p||22.5p||32p||65p||80p|
|Feb 4, 1980||Jan 25, 1981||15p||26p||37p||75p||£1.00|
|Jan 26, 1981||Jan 31, 1982||22p||36p||50p||90p||£1.25|
|Feb 1, 1982||Apr 4, 1983||26p||40p||54p||£1.00||£1.25|
|Apr 5, 1983||Sep 2, 1984||28p||42p||56p||£1.00||£1.50|
|Sep 3, 1984||Oct 19, 1986||31p||45p||59p||£1.10||£1.50|
|Oct 20, 1986||Sep 4, 1988||31p||45p||59p||£1.20||£1.50|
|Sep 5, 1988||Oct 1, 1989||32p||47p||62p||£1.40||£1.65|
|Oct 2, 1989||Sep 16, 1990||34p||50p||66p||£1.55||£1.75|
|Sep 17, 1990||Sep 15, 1991||37p||53p||70p||£1.75||£1.85|
|Sep 16, 1991
|Oct 31, 1993||39p||57p||89p||£1.90||£1.95|
|Nov 1, 1993||Jul 7, 1996||41p||60p||92p||£2.50||£2.70|
|Jul 8, 1996||Apr 25, 1999||43p||63p||96p||£2.50||£2.70|
|Apr 26, 1999||Apr 26, 2000||44p||64p||99p||£2.60||£2.85|
Notes about the chart:
1. The table includes the minimum and second step rates. The specific weight that this covered has varied over the years.
2. The charges for registered or special delivery were the same as those for domestic mail until the services were discontinued.
3. On February 15, 1971, Great Britain adopted decimal currency. The airmail rate did not change on that day, and the 7.5p rate is equivalent to the old rate of 1/6 (one shilling and six pence).
4. Airmail letters to the USA were part of Zone B from 1968 until September 15, 1991. On September 16, 1991, Zones A and B were merged into Zone 1.
5. In 1991, Swiftair replaced express and special delivery services for mail going outside the U.K. Registration and recorded delivery service were added to Swiftair in the late 1990s, and discounts were offered when registered or recorded delivery services were combined with Swiftair.
6. International Recorded Delivery became available in 1993 and gradually replaced registered mail for overseas. The name for this service was changed to “International Signed For” sometime prior to 2003. The fee for registered mail was raised to £3.00 on November 1, 1993 and to £3.15 on April 26, 1999. Registered mail became unavailable to the United States in 1999.
For more information about the airmail services, see the notes on the International Rates page.
Some information presented in the table was taken from “Great Britain Domestic and International Postal Rates and Fees” by Anthony S. Wawrukiewicz. For more information, visit Worldwide Postal Rates. Some of the above information is from “Johnson and Peet - British Postal Rates (2000).” Thanks to David Alderfer for the cover with the Swiftair label.
|Last update: Tuesday, April 28, 2009|
|Copyright © 2005 by Great Britain Collectors Club|