What to do with your letters and parcels if there’s a postal strike

December 19, 2022

1. Send your post early if you can

Posting early is the easiest way to avoid your letters and parcels getting delayed. To minimise the risk of delays, you can send your post before the planned strike action. Letters or parcels you post on the day before, during or straight after any strike are particularly likely to be delayed.

Royal Mail has said it will not be delivering letters on strike days (except for Special Delivery) so send your letters early.

2. Check Royal Mail’s up-to-date information

To see the latest information from Royal Mail, you can check this website. You can also see if your area is affected by severe delivery delays by going to Royal Mail’s Service Delivery update (under “Deliveries today”). If you want to contact Royal Mail, you can call them on 03457 740 740.

If you need to go to a Royal Mail delivery office or customer service point, check their latest opening hours here. These offices will be closed on strike days, but will re-open as normal the day after the strike.

3. If you’re waiting for a delayed bill you can contact the company

If you’re worried about a bill sent in the post being delayed, you can contact the company. You could also check your account online. Or if that’s not possible for you, there’s normally contact information on old bills or letters. If you need to pay a bill that’s been delayed, you could access your account online. Or see if you have an old bill from the company as there’s often a list of ways to pay on the back of bills.

4. Even if a parcel is delayed, you won’t lose out on your right to return it

When you buy something online the law sets out that you have 14 days to cancel your order — unless it’s bespoke or made to measure. You then get another 14 days to return the item if you change your mind. And you start counting from the day after you receive your parcel. So whilst a short delay might be frustrating, you won’t lose out on your right to return goods.

5. Always make sure to get (and keep) your proof of posting

If you’re sending something, make sure to get proof of posting. For example, this could be your receipt if you sent something at the Post Office. Make sure you keep hold of it too. If something you send doesn’t arrive or is lost then it’ll be easier to sort out if you have proof of posting.

And if you still can’t solve your problem — we’re here to help

If you need more information, Citizens Advice is here to help. You can find out more on our website or contact the Citizens Advice Consumer Service helpline.