Royal Mail announces 2 new surcharges to letter and parcel deliveries ahead of Christmas | Personal Finance | Finance

Royal Mail has warned that business account customers will be asked to pay a new green surcharge of 2p on their deliveries.

The green surcharge will help fund the firm’s decarbonisation measures.

Although consumers will not be charged the surcharge directly, there are concerns that some businesses may choose to pass on the cost.

The changes will be in place from 20 November and will end on 7 January as Christmas deliveries are dispatched.

Business account customers will also be asked to pay an additional peak surcharge of 5p for letters and 10p for parcels later in the month.

The 2p surcharge will apply against:

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

Sarah Coles, personal finance analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown, said: “Online retailers have to contend with rising prices on all sides, so they are unlikely to take these extra charges on the chin.

“It is to be passed on to shoppers, who will expect the cost of Christmas to keep rising.”

The 5p peak surcharge will apply against:

  • Royal Mail 24 and Royal Mail 48 large letters
  • 24 letterbox products sent by business account holders were tracked.
  • 48 letterbox products sent by business account holders were tracked

The 10p peak surcharge will apply against:

  • Royal Mail 24
  • Royal Mail 48 Parcels
  • Royal Mail Tracking 24
  • 48 parcels were tracked by Royal Mail
  • Royal Mail Tracked Returns
  • Royal Mail Special Delivery Guaranteed by 9am, 1pm and end of day on Sunday
  • Special Guaranteed Delivery Returns

As well as introducing these extra charges, Royal Mail stamp prices have more than doubled since 2012, when a first class stamp cost 60p.

Here are some of the most commonly used stamp enlargements:

  • Standard first class letter £1.25 (up from £1.10 – up 15p) +14 per cent
  • Standard second class letter £0.75 (unchanged)
  • First class large letter £1.95 (up from £1.60 – up 35p) +22 per cent
  • Large second class letter £1.55 (up from £1.15 – up 40p) +35 per cent

A Royal Mail spokesman said: “These surcharges will only affect business account customers and are only applied to certain products.

“Christmas is our busiest time of the year and we invest in thousands of extra staff, more vehicles and additional parcel sorting sites to manage around double the normal parcel volume. Other parcel carriers already have a similar surcharge in place during the Christmas period.

“We are proud to have the lowest reported emissions per parcel* of any parcel carrier in the UK. The Steps To Zero plan has stretch targets to reach Net-Zero by 2040. The money raised through the Green surcharge will help fund decarbonisation measures in our network.”

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