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Italy has the most expensive domestic letter prices in EU

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Staff writer ▼ | April 26, 2016
Italian post
Post services   Domestic letter mail in Germany is below the European average

In 20 countries, postal customers have to pay more for letters. Sending letters is most expensive in Italy and Denmark, followed by a series of Eastern European nations.

Despite the latest postage hike to EUR 0.70 the price for standard domestic letter mail in Germany is still markedly below the European average.

That is shown in this year's comparison of postage rates published by Deutsche Post. The nominal average price for standard letters in Europe is EUR 0.80. It has thus risen by EUR 0.14. Germany is ranked 14 among the 31 countries considered in the study. Letter prices have risen in 18 countries since 2015.

The only place where they have dropped is Sweden, which eliminated value-added taxation of standard letters. The country with the most expensive domestic letter prices is now Italy, with a rate of EUR 2.80. However this price also includes a simple track & trace service.

Adjusted for inflation, mailing letters in Germany is now around 9% more expensive than it was in 2006. Compared with the average letter price in Europe in the same period, however, it is almost 37% more costly.

For the fifteenth time, Deutsche Post has compared standard letter prices for all 28 European Union member states as well as Norway, Switzerland and Iceland. The aim is not just to provide a quantitative contrast of mere nominal letter prices, but also to make a comparison that takes relevant macroeconomic factors into consideration.

For example, Deutsche Post examines letter prices in relation to the average hourly wages of local industrial workers.

An employee in Germany needs to work 1.42 minutes to cover the cost of a standard letter, putting the country as the third-fastest in European comparison.

It follows Switzerland and Malta, where staff only have to work 1.40 and 1.35 respectively to cover postage costs. Like last year, people in Bulgaria - at 9.97 - still had to work the longest to earn the relevant amount of money, followed by Italy at 8.46.

To acquire even more meaningful data, Deutsche Post adjusted the nominal results for labor costs and purchasing power parity. When it comes to consolidated letter prices, Germany does especially well with regard to the letter prices of Deutsche Post.

At EUR 0.70, this price is far below the average and puts the country in 23rd place among 31 nations. Consolidated rates are lower in only seven nations, which are generally markedly smaller than Germany.

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