In their latest efforts to streamline their services, Royal Mail and the Isle of Man Post Office have made the joint decision to remove the postal flight service, and instead use the road and pre-existing ferry service to send and receive post from the island. This was implemented on the 16th of October.
This follows their move on the 7th of August to similarly cut the postal flight service to Jersey from the 7th of August this year.
The effect of these changes are that postal service to and from the Isle of Man and Jersey are now effectively two day services. Royal Mail have said that the decision to end the postal flight service will reduce costs for Royal Mail, amid a steady decline in letter volumes, and reflects a commitment to reducing the business’ reliance on flights as it works towards a 2040 net zero target.
It’s worth noting that as the IOM and the Channel Islands jurisdictions aren’t technically part of the UK, they are not covered by the Ofcom Universal Service requirements that apply to mainland Britain and islands such as the Isle of Wight.
Tracked and standard services shouldn’t be overly impacted, as even Tracked 24 is billed as a 1-2 day service with Tracked 48 promising delivery within 3 – 4 Working Days (although the aim is next day for Tracked 24 and 2-3 days for Tracked 48). The biggest impact will be Special Delivery which is now a 2-day service to these destinations.
You will need to amend your delivery promises to these destinations to avoid disappointment, and check with marketplaces you trade on to ensure that the shipments to the Isle of Man and Jersey don’t over-promise and impact you on-time delivery metrics.