Royal Mail Parcel Collect free to year end

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Royal Mail Parcel Collect service has been made free of charge until the end of December. Previously you’d have had to pay 60p for a collection for most parcels (it was already free for Tracked services).

With Parcel Collect, customers arrange for their postie to collect their parcel from their doorstep. Saves going to a Post Office or a trip to your local delivery office.

Customers sending or returning a parcel on the Royal Mail app or website will have a convenient collection automatically booked for them. In fact, Royal Mail have made it practically impossible to book a label without a free collection which will always be the following day at earliest, or up to a week in advance. If you really really want your shipment to arrive quicker, you can save a day by deleting the free collection checkout and drop it off yourself. Most customers won’t figure out to remove an unwanted collection however as it’s not that easy to work out what to do.

Customers can also send a parcel, or book a collection if they already have a label, through the Royal Mail app or online (

Royal Mail need to up their game as they are about to be hammered by the first four, of what is likely to be a series, of strikes. These will push Royal Mail into a loss making position, but the longer term effects will be even more significant if consumers and businesses switch to alternative carriers – which is probably why we’re seeing this promotion announced just before the first strike dates coming from the 26th onwards.

Parcel Collect is an interesting conundrum to try to figure out – we can’t work out if Royal Mail love it as it’s innovate and offers convenience to customers, or if they hate it as it must be costing them a fortune and that’s even when people pay for the service. Offering it for free definitely pushes it into loss making territory so it has to be viewed as a loss leader with the hope that it’ll encourage more parcels into the network in the future.

Royal Mail’s press release is all about parcels, but check the Royal Mail website and you can even have a letter collected for free. Yes, if you’re sending a Second Class letter, after paying 68p for the stamp, Royal Mail only have 8p left to deliver it as normally there would be a 60p collection charge! That’s got to be unsustainable. You don’t even need a printer as you can request your Postie to bring the label with them.

Through Parcel Collect, Royal Mail collects from customers at their doorstep as part of a postie’s daily round, which means customers don’t have to get in their cars or use public transport to send a parcel, resulting in fewer additional emissions and less congestion. With the UK’s largest “Feet on the Street” network of over 90,000 postmen and women, Royal Mail already has the lowest reported CO2e emissions per parcel amongst major UK delivery companies. 

– Royal Mail

We’re not sure quite how accurate the above statement is, as for the last two times I sent test parcels a Postie in a van turned up to collect my parcels about an hour before a different Postie turned up to deliver my letters. I guess it depends how large and heavy the outgoing parcel is and how many more they have to collect that day.

Because it’s so convenient, Parcel Collect has been incredibly successful since it was launched. Everyone knows when their postie delivers so it’s really convenient to arrange for them to collect anything that needs to be sent or returned at the same time. We can collect from a safe place if customers aren’t going to be in and who better to do that safely than the postie who knows you and your home. To top it off, if you don’t have a printer just let us know and we’ll bring the label with us. Until the end of December you can do this for £0 so there’s no reason not to try this fantastic new service. Parcel Collect is part of our commitment to continuously make our services more convenient as we re-invent the way we deliver to and from our customers.

– Nick Landon, Chief Commercial Officer, Royal Mail

Recent research from Royal Mail revealed over a quarter (29 per cent) of those polled already have their parcel collected from home (41 per cent for 18–24-year-olds†). 55 per cent are likely to consider using Parcel Collect. This is why we are so keen to share the benefits of this convenient service which we expect to continue to grow strongly.

2 Responses

  1. used it a lot (both when it was free trialled etc and paid), for large letters and letters where i needed the “scan on collection” – factored it into costs of course, but works well.

    however van (electric) shows up (2 man) and collects my letters or LL, and then my normal postie delivers to my address. seems inefficient.


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