Postal rates will increase approximately 5.4 percent Sunday, January 8th.

The cost to mail a one-ounce letter will increase from 37 cents to 39 cents.

The cost to mail a two-ounce letter will increase from 60 cents to 63 cents. Mailing a postcard will increase from 23 cents to 24 cents.

One-pound priority mail rates will increase from $3.85 to $4.05.

The cost of mailing a half-pound express mail envelope will increase from $13.65 to $14.40 and postage for a two-pound express mail will jump from $17.85 to $18.80.

The postage increase is the first since 2002. Postal Service officials say the increase is required for the Postal Service to meet the mandate of a $3.1 billion escrow account.

Congress will determine how the escrow account will be spent later.

International rates, which are determined separately from domestic rates, will be adjusted to coincide with the domestic rate change, said Jim Miller, Postal Service Board of Governors chairman.

International postage rates have not been adjusted since January 2001.