Users report Royal Mail postage label printing glitch

By Dan Wilson August 27, 2015 - 4:13 pm

Are you being affected by a Royal Mail postage label printing glitch?

We’ve heard from several sellers who are and it’s causing some despatch headaches in advance of the bank holiday weekend. Tamebay readers report that it’s no longer possible to print labels of letter size. It seems that in the hurry to roll out the barcode developments they may have broken some key functionality.

It seems users cannot print on the A4 size 4xA6-label sheets. The only size printable for letter posting is the A5 size labels, 2 per sheet, which are too big to go on a standard letter A6 envelope.

One Tamebay correspondent wrote: “I have spoken to their poor harassed customer service employees (nicely!) and they say they’ve been getting complaints about this all day. There is no timescale for any fix, and apparently they can’t roll-back the changes because the new barcodes are more important. This is a right old fiasco; it’s simply not practical for me to go to the post office with my packages as there’s always a queue and I simply don’t have the time to wait.”

Have you had a similar experience?

1800hrs 28/8/15 Updated to add:

Update from Royal Mail on Online Postage:

Our online postage channel on is currently not printing postage for the A4 letter format on 4xA6 label sheets. We apologise for the inconvenience this is causing our customers.

We are working to resolve this issue and aim to have the 4xA6 label sheets for A4 letter format available from week commencing 7th September.

The issue with the 4xA6 label sheets is the result of an update implemented on 26th August to add the new 2D barcode to our external shipping labels.

In the meantime, customers can print onto labels that are two per A4 page. Customers can still print four labels per A4 page for Large Letters, Small Parcels and Medium Parcels.

  • Andy
    2 years ago

    The roll-out of a Royal Mail ‘improvement’ goes tits up. You’d NEVER have guessed this would happen. Grrrr!

  • 2 years ago

    After the nightmare on Wednesday of trying to fathom out why labels weren’t printing properly & why I couldn’t get my company name on the Return Label I sent a tweet to Royal Mail complaining that businesses had no fore warning. At 4.30pm that day an email arrived about Important And Immediate Changes to Royal Mail’s Online Postage Labels – here are a couple of points:
    “We’ve been testing changes to our online postage label designs and are launching these immediately – Wednesday 26 August. We realise this email provides little pre-notification but it was important we first get the changes thoroughly tested and that we then made them available to you as soon as possible. Sorry if this immediate change causes you any inconvenience but please read on for the information you need”
    “We’re still working on making the 4 per page paper/ labels for LETTERS available, so please print 2 per page while we get this sorted for you. ( this was in such small letters you’d need a magnifying glass)

    • Tony C
      2 years ago

      Yeah I noticed that about the small-print bit. And the real irony is that the only labels they let you print for Letter size (which the vast majority of my packages are) are too big to go on a letter-sized package! Duh….

  • Tony C
    2 years ago

    Thanks for the update, guys. What a palaver!

  • Tony C
    2 years ago

    Saturday 29th, 0830 and the RM Online Postage site is ‘temporarily unavailable’. Hopefully this means they’re sorting it out right now….but I’m not holding my breath.

  • Gerry007
    2 years ago

    Assuming they have not sorted this out soon, will they ever got around to a smaller label….??

  • 2 years ago

    Used it Saturday afternoon, and after spending about an hour trying to figure out why I was using the “wrong size” labels, realised it was just Royal Mail…. Sigh, any wonder they are in so much debt?

  • dan
    2 years ago

    it seems as though im the last holdout on this, and last time i rang i was told it would be retired… SMARTSTAMP.

    i use this, and its a program not a web based tool, which i prefer, and i use 4 to an A4 sheet labels, i think the avery code is L1763.

    they then changed it so i couldnt use it for airmail Large letters when they came in, so seems i will be encountering the issues above, if im forced to migrate to online postage.

    does anyone have any feedback for me? will my labels work as they do now? is it easy to use? etc

  • Tony C
    2 years ago

    Latest from their helpline today, 7th September at 1645 is that they still have no time frame for the fix; they had hoped it would be fixed by today but no joy.

    The good thing as far as I am concerned is that they are still getting complaints, so they’re not off the hook and the fuss is not simply going away…

  • Chris C
    2 years ago

    11th September and still no joy. I have been using the online system since August 2008 and regularly messed with it as updates keep making it worse. In 2008 it worked very well – now it is hardly surprising that RM are having trouble competing with the new kids on the block.

    Another gripe – when you put a postcode into the online system it finds the address for you. That’s all well and good however that is great unless the address is long, at which point it tells you the address is too long. Surely if RM is providing the address from the postcode it should provide one that fits their system?

    What a mess!

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