What Is an "H Rate Make up Stamp"?

The U.S. Postal Service began issuing the H-rate make-up stamp, with a one-cent value, in November 1998 in anticipation of the postage increase that took place in January 1999. The Postal Service required the addition of a make-up stamp to the previously issued 32-cent first-class letter stamp to send a letter.

The H-rate make-up stamp features a picture of a weather vane topped with a rooster. The stamp includes the words "The 'H' Rate make-up stamp" across the top of the stamp and has "USA" to the right, above the rooster's tail.

The Postal Service began using nondenominational stamps in 1975 due to an uncertainty concerning the time or the value of the increase it anticipated before the end of the year. It printed the A-rate stamp for an increase in 1978. Along with the "A" through "H" series of first-class postage stamps, the Postal Service printed and sold make-up stamps instead of large numbers of low denomination stamps beginning with the F rate in 1991.

In 2006, the Postal Service began printing "Forever Stamps" to eliminate the need for make-up stamps. The Postal Service sells these stamps at the current first class rate. The value of the stamp increases with the postal rate. In 2013, the Postal Service began issuing a "Global Forever Stamp" for use with international letters weighing up to 1 ounce.