Whether you call it The Great White North, America’s Hat or just plain ‘ole Canada, there’s a good chance that at least once in your lifetime you’ll need to mail a letter there.
While Canada may be a stone’s throw away for many Americans, postage rates follow USPS’ international pricing schedule. It may seem a bit confusing, but we’ve put this guide together to help you out!
How Many Stamps Do I Need for a Letter to Canada In 2023?
One Global Forever Stamp covers postage to Canada for greeting cards, business envelopes, and postcards, weighing less than 2 ounces in 2023. Large envelopes and flats require two Global Forever Stamps (for 1-ounce items). Domestic Forever Stamps, additional ounce stamps, and cent stamps can also be used when mailing letters to Canada.
We’re go into even more detail about how many stamps you need for your Canadian-bound letters, so keep reading for more useful facts and tips!
How Much Does It Cost to Mail a Letter to Canada?
When shipping to Canada, the cost of postage depends on an item’s weight and the service you select.
In this section, we’ll focus on shipping costs for mailing standard-sized letters sent via First-Class Mail International service.
Standard-size letters (ex. greeting cards or business envelopes) weighing less than 2 ounces can be sent to Canada, using one Global Forever stamp.
USPS currently sells Global Forever stamps for $1.30.
First-Class Mail International service can be used to send letters, weighing up to 3.5 ounces to Canada.
Here’s what you can expect to pay for this service, based on different weights. Be aware that you’ll need to round up to the nearest ounce if your item falls between two weights:
|Weight not over (ounces)||Price|
Can I Mail a Letter to Canada with Forever Stamps?
As mentioned in the previous section, USPS offers Forever Stamps intended for international mailing, which are labeled Global Forever Stamps.
One Global Forever stamp provides enough postage to send small letters and greeting cards weighing up to 2 ounces to Canada.
In addition to these special international Forever Stamps, it’s also possible to send a letter to Canada using domestic Forever Stamps, as long as they add up to at least $1.30.
At the current rate ($0.58), you’d need to attach 3 domestic Forever Stamps to your letter in order to have enough postage.
This is not recommended, as you’ll be grossly overpaying for postage. Let’s see how this works out.
Three domestic Forever Stamps cost $1.74, and postage to Canada costs $1.30. Therefore, you’ll be paying $0.44 more than you need to.
Overall, it’s easier and more cost effective to use Global Forever stamps when mailing to Canada.
How Many Stamps Do I Need for Mailing Flats to Canada?
If your letter weighs more than 3.5 ounces, or is larger than a standard letter, you’ll need to look at USPS’ rates for large envelopes (also called flats) to determine the number of stamps needed.
For an item to be considered a flat, it must conform to the following dimensions:
- Be a minimum of 6 ⅛ inches high x 11 ½ inches long
- Be a maximum 12 inches high x 15 inches long
- Have a maximum thickness of ¾ of an inch
- Weigh between 1 ounce and 15.994 ounces
Pricing for 1-ounce flats headed to Canada starts at $2.60. Below we’ve put together a table showing pricing for this type of envelope:
|Weight not more than (ounces)||Price|
Here are some different stamp combinations you can use to pay for postage on flats.
1 ounce ($2.60)
- 2 Global Forever stamps (Total = $2.60)
- 5 domestic Forever stamps (Total = $2.90, you overpay by $0.30)
2 ounces ($2.85)
- 2 Global Forever stamps, 1 Additional Ounce stamp, and one 5¢ stamp ($2.85)
- 5 domestic Forever Stamps (Total = $2.90, you overpay by $0.05)
3 ounces ($3.09)
- 2 Global Forever stamps, 2 additional ounce stamps, one 10¢ stamp (Total = $3.10, you overpay by $0.01).
4 ounces ($3.31)
- 2 Global Forever stamps, 1 Domestic Forever stamp, one 10¢ stamp, one 2¢ stamp, and one 1¢ stamp (Total = $3.31)
- 6 domestic Forever Stamps (Total = $3.48, you overpay by $0.17).
If you are looking to learn more, you can also read our posts on what are additional ounce stamps, 14 USPS stamp types, and what are semipostal stamps.
In most cases, one Global Forever stamp is all you’ll need to make sure your letter makes it to Canada.
However, if you’ve got an envelope that’s heavier and/or larger than the standard size, follow our stamp guide or head to your local post office, and have them calculate postage for you.