After the recent furore over increased postal prices, the Royal Mail is making headlines yet again over its plan to add a £1 ‘tax’ on all mailing bags and parcels sent via Parcelforce during the Olympics.
The controversial move is one of many changes set to affect all businesses under postcodes E, EC, N, NW, SE, SW, W and WC, due to road congestion and restrictions imposed on central London during the Olympic period.
Royal Mail claim that the “small additional charge of £1 per consignment” on all Parcelforce deliveries is to help recoup the logistical costs of employing extra staff and hiring additional vehicles and equipment during the Olympics, but many London businesses are calling the fee a ‘tax on business’ and a ‘profit grab’.
The £1 fee is set to replace the current 50p surcharge Parcelforce levy on deliveries in central London to cover the capital’s congestion charge, and will last until the final day of the Olympics on September 9th 2012.
In addition to the increased delivery fee imposed on all mailing bags and parcels sent via Parcelforce Worldwide, the Royal Mail’s own courier service, we can expect to see a delay in delivery targets during this period by up to 24 hours.
Delivery to Official Olympic sites such as the Olympic Village are to be carried out by the London 2012 official logistic partner UPS, and if you intend to send out mailing bags and envelopes during this period you can expect to pay a “final mile” charge of £5, while parcels will be subjected to a £20 “security charge”.
Parcelforce predict that the “level of disruption” will reduce during the transition period between the Olympic and the Paralympics, but it will not return to ‘normal’ until September 10th 2012 and they therefore advise all London Businesses to plan ahead.