Wednesday 4 October 2023

Surcharges rise on 30 October 2023 - £7 for unpaid maial? Send it back!

Following the postage rate increases on Monday last, another change has been drawn to my attention.

Royal Mail's charges for unpaid and underpaid mail changes on 30 October as shown below. How the charge is worked out when there are a combination of factors is anybody's guess and worth playing with I guess.

In short:
1. No postage or a counterfeit stamp rises from £2.50 to £5.00

2. Underpayment stays at £1.50

3. Use of non-barcoded stamp rises from the moderate £1.10 (which was the 1st class postage rate until Monday) to £2.50.

For small parcels the 'unpaid or counterfeit' charge rises from £3.50 to £7!

New surcharge rates from 30 October for unpaid and non-barcoded post.


  1. I don't understand the big difference between Insufficient Postage £1.50 and No Postage £5.
    And has this had to be approved by Ofcom ?

    1. Where did the Croydon Giraffes come from?4 October 2023 at 15:16

      So putting a 1p barcoded stamp (and nothing else) is better than nothing (£1.50 v £5.00) and 'better' than using invalidated stamps (£1.50 v £2.50)?

      And if a sender underpays by 1p, the penalty fee is just the same as if they only paid 1p?

      IS there a logical reason for any of this (or just plucking random numbers out of the air)?

    2. All penalties are more than the basic postage rate AND the item will be held up and not given 1st class treatment. It will be interesting to see how well Revenue Protection implement this process and when they will actually start it.

    3. But for several years it has been cheaper for the recipient to pay for heavier Large Letters.
      Not that it would happen but now the sender's 1p stamp plus the recipients £1.50 surcharge saves £1.19, 44%, of the £2.70 rate from 250g to 750g.

    4. Not if the sender is using stamps bought at half price!

  2. This wouldn't be so bad if not for the apparent skills/knowledge gap at some mail centres in raising charges incorrectly.
    In my experience Sheffield MC being particularly bad. I've had three items go through there which were incorrectly called out as invalid stamps, and seen several others on this and another forum.

    1. Yes, I remember ten years ago the recipient checking on their kitchen scales a Large Letter surcharged for being over 100g and it was only 97g.

    2. I use those in the office, just lately it's clocking higher than the PO scales.

  3. Quite frankly if I got a card through the door asking for £7 to deliver a parcel I would just laugh: no chance! They can ship it back to the sender, thank you very much.

    And how would many small parcels get into the system with no postage paid? Parcel boxes?

  4. Oh dear, that is poorly worded. Commemorative stamps are non-barcoded stamps....


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