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Man buys $8,000 worth of stamps to use forever

Man pays $8,000 to stick with today's stamp price
Wednesday, May 16, 2007

A guy walks into a post office and buys $8,000 worth of stamps.

Sounds like the start of something, but there's no punch line.

Someone walked into the post office in Camp Hill the other day and bought $8,000 worth of Forever Stamps.

The Forever Stamp is a 41-cent stamp that debuted last month. If you buy one, you can use it now and forever -- no matter where the cost of a stamp soars.

"It's not really designed to be an investment," said Mark Hnasko, a spokesman for the U.S. Postal Service in central Pennsylvania.

In fact, when the Postal Service unveiled the stamp in Philadelphia on April 12, it focused on convenience, not savings.

The Forever Stamp, which features a likeness of the Liberty Bell, brings "freedom and independence from using 1- and 2-cent stamps for mailing letters when stamp prices change in the future," the Postal Service said.

Note: That's when they change, not if.

Hnasko said the new stamps have been popular, but "that's really a rare occurrence for somebody to buy that many."

And just how many is that many?

Dropping $8,000 at the post office would get you 19,512 Forever Stamps and a couple of pennies in change.

You could send a lot of checks to creditors or invitations to one really big event.

The stamps are sold in sheets of 20, not rolls. That makes them ideal for individuals and less attractive for businesses, said John Schlotter, the postmaster at Camp Hill.

But even an $8,000 sale couldn't deplete the stock at Camp Hill.

"We have plenty, and we have plenty of 2-cent stamps," Schlotter said.

Because the cost of mailing a letter increased from 39 cents to 41 cents on Monday, post offices have been bustling with people buying 2-cent stamps.

Those who buy the Forever Stamps will never have to queue up for extra postage.

So maybe that's the punch line: Guy goes into the post office and buys $8,000 worth of Forever Stamps -- and now he never has to wait in line in the post office again.

NANCY ESHELMAN: 255-8163 or

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