Royal Mail Introduces Peak Surcharge, Shoppers May Pay More for Christmas


What's the Change?

Royal Mail has implemented a major change to its fees, and shoppers will likely face higher costs this Christmas. Business account customers will now have to pay an additional peak surcharge of 5p for letters and 10p for parcels. The surcharge came into effect on November 20 and will remain until January 7.

Impact on Consumers

While the surcharge won't be directly charged to consumers, there are concerns that they may end up paying the extra cost indirectly. If businesses increase their prices to cover the surcharge, shoppers may have to bear the brunt of it. Sarah Coles, personal finance analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown, warns that the cost of Christmas will continue to rise due to these additional charges.

Additional Changes

This change follows the introduction of a 2p green surcharge for business account customers on November 6. Previously, Royal Mail announced an increase in first-class stamp prices from £1.10 to £1.25 on October 2. Andrew Hagger, personal finance expert at Moneycomms, emphasizes that additional costs are the last thing hard-pressed consumers need.

Products Affected

The 2p green surcharge is applied to products such as Royal Mail Tracked 24 and Royal Mail Tracked 48. Additionally, the 5p peak surcharge applies to Royal Mail 24 and Royal Mail 48 large letters, as well as Royal Mail Tracked 24 and Royal Mail Tracked 48 letterboxable products sent by business account holders. The following products will be subject to a 10p peak surcharge:

  • Royal Mail 24
  • Royal Mail 48 Parcels
  • Royal Mail Tracked 24
  • Royal Mail Tracked 48 Parcels
  • Royal Mail Tracked Returns
  • Royal Mail Special Delivery Guaranteed by 9am, 1pm, and end of the day Sunday
  • Special Delivery Guaranteed Returns

Royal Mail's Response

A spokesperson for Royal Mail stated that Christmas is their busiest time of year, and they invest in additional staff, vehicles, and parcel sorting sites to handle the increased volume. The spokesperson also mentioned that other parcel carriers already apply a similar surcharge during the Christmas period.

Other News: Post Office Offers New Parcel Delivery Options

The Post Office has made a significant change to its parcel delivery services, giving customers more choice. In addition to Royal Mail, customers will now have the option to send packages using DPD and Evri at selected branches. This change provides more convenience for those sending parcels for Christmas or selling items online.

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