Updates from Royal Mail after the adverse weather conditions

By Dan Wilson March 5, 2018 - 7:22 am

The recent adverse weather conditions have had an impact on ecommerce merchants and Royal Mail have provided a series of updates to keep shoppers and senders up to speed. As they say:

Freezing temperatures and icy conditions continue to affect many parts of the UK though conditions are slowly improving in some areas. While other areas are at risk of flooding due to melting snow. We were out delivering and collecting mail wherever it was safe and possible to do so yesterday and plan to be on Monday. Some services, however, will be affected in those areas still experiencing or recovering from the adverse conditions. Weather and safety risks are being constantly assessed to allow services to be reinstated locally as soon as it is safe to do so.

We’ll be out delivering and collecting as much mail as possible tomorrow, we’re doing all we can to maintain services wherever it is safe for us to do so and would like to apologise to customers whose mail deliveries and collections are affected by the severe weather conditions.
– Royal Mail

Here is a sample of the problems, but you can find the full details here.

The Royal Mail Special Delivery guarantee has been suspended:

We’re sorry that we are currently unable to guarantee next day delivery of Special Delivery items posted from Thursday 1 March 2018. We continue to accept and prioritise the delivery of Special Delivery items at this time and will reinstate the delivery guarantee as soon as we are confident we can meet this service promise for all customers. We’re really sorry for the inconvenience caused, and hope to be able to lift the suspension very soon.
Royal Mail

Deliveries and collections are also affected by adverse weather conditions:

We’ve opened as many Customer Service Points as possible this week for customers to collect items for which we’ve left a ‘Something for you’ card, for as long as we’ve been able to provide resource – though the adverse weather is affecting our ability to do so in some areas. Please be advised that opening times, including Sunday openings, may vary as a result.
– Royal Mail

How have you been affected?

  • 3 years ago

    Over the weekend I wrote about 200 eBay messages to customers explaining the situation and without exception they were understanding. However, it will be interesting to see what eBay’s attitude is to late dispatch and delivery stats. Here in Fife our schools are still closed and the roads look like the grey aftermath of armageddon so it will be a few days before we get back to normal.

  • 3 years ago

    No doubt ebayer sellers will get lots of defects against them for not risking their lives to get items delivered in their often unrealistic timescales.

  • Hannah
    3 years ago

    I’ve already had one this morning telling me they will be leaving negative feedback as their stuff didn’t arrive on Saturday as planned. Phoned concierge and they said to just refund her. Some people are incredible.

    • 3 years ago

      I am assuming that you posted the item.

      Concierge said to refund her, and what about the item you posted, does the buyer get to keep it? And probably still give yo bad feedback for late delivery.

      I would hang onto the money and explain the situation in replying to the neg feedback.

  • Toby
    3 years ago

    Ebay are saying that it is up to the seller to contact c.s and provide evidence that any defects etc blamed on late dispatch are unfair!!!! WTF?
    So how exactly do i do that? Do i check with royal mail every single address address for delays? I had no R.M collections on Thurs or friday…
    Surely ebay can just stretch themself to suspensding defects etc for postage for a period of time?
    Nope… they know that sellers will be far to busy to sit around on the end opf the phohe waiting to go through their many sales. Even then who has the time to TRY and get proof? Meanwhile thousands of sellers will lose TRS and discounts, ebay will make more money and the blame will be pinned on the weather and the sellers…. AGAIN

    • 3 years ago


      If you update your eBay orders with tracking then you have a problem, the eBay automated system will give you a penalty for late delivery, if not then it is only your customers who can.

      As you had no RM collections what did you do about letting your buyers know there was a problem?

      I booked a flight on Monday & flew off Tuesday to get away from the weather, although I am still taking orders and extended the posting time to when I get back. Anybody buying will clearly see that they will not get their items for some time, however, this is not always the case. Each morning I message everybody who purchased items the day before and tell them of the delay as well as give them the option to cancel should they wish. I do not have to do this as I will deliver in the time frame. But I do it to make sure the customer is not disappointed, rightly or wrongly..

      If you contacted people and gave them the chance to cancel then they have no right to complain and you should be able to defend your position with eBay.

  • northumbrian
    3 years ago

    nowts a bother,
    were ebay sellers we always have Sack cloth ,ashes ,hot coals , tar, feathers, whips, racks, ducking stools etc available

  • SAM
    3 years ago

    Again conflicting and confusing information on eBay (to be fair to be expected). Some say the “silly” defects will be removed automatically, others say you need to provide “evidence” (which seems ludicrous to say the least, or at worst a deliberate attempt to profit from the situation). So much for the announcement how they were going to be clear and communicate with the merchants. They are very poor in this area. They just create hassle, stems from poor leadership and direction.
    Naturally the only marketplace we have had any hassle on has been surprise surprise eBay.
    As far as RMG go, totally understand not working Wed afternoon, Defo Thursday and even Fri (even though we got to the sort centre), however I totally fail to understand why they were not picking up on the Saturday in this area. We were in a Red area and everyone else was out and about on the Saturday.
    My partner was selling to Postie on Saturday (in her work) who said he had not been in work since Tuesday?? and was not back in till Monday.
    That list from RMG was never kept up to date, again communication was poor, neither of the two sorts here was on it, both in one of the worst effected areas. They claim they are overwhelmed but cannot even keep the Service update Up to date.

  • Carl
    3 years ago

    Thanks for not making my daughters birthday a special one as most of all the post received today was sent out prior to last week you like most of all other public services decided to just down tools last week your a disgrace please just don’t bitch and threaten strike action again you deserve nothing

    • simon
      3 years ago

      Wow get a life. I would not put my safety 2nd to delivering a letter. I have had bad accidents in the snow both driving and walking to know my health is more important than someone birthday. I have nearly crashed into cars, smashed my head into the path “trying to do the right thing” and for what! Would you have gone out and thanked the delivery person for doing all that….My guess is not.
      You sound like a typical eBay buyer who says how their daughters birthday was totally ruined because some sequins she bought to put on a card did not arrive.

  • Karly
    3 years ago

    Waiting for a parcel that is according to your tracking delivery was attempted but address was inacessable this was the 3rd March funny thing was I had another parcel delivered by Royal Mail the same day. So my address was no inacessable. According to your tracking delivery has been attempted twice. I’ve had no card through my door so I can collect my parcel. It’s a joke been waiting ages for it to arrive. I can understand the weather has been bad but to not even attempt to deliver 1 of my parcels but then deliver the another on the same day

  • Annoyed
    3 years ago

    If guarantee was suspended, why did Royal Mail continue to accept full payment for next day delivery? They obviously forgot to suspend the price of the service, while suspending the service itself. Scammers.

  • 3 years ago

    @simon When you ask “for what”, it is to do your job and you try and do it as diligently as you can, I have a lot of respect for postmen and especially people like yourselves. I have also never asked anybody that has worked for me to do anything that I was not prepared to do myself.

    But you are right in your response, I have no problem with that.

    @Annoyed, not scammers as you put it, just inefficient and lack of technology. RM has the worst customer service and technology platform you could ever use. (ok, maybe eBay & Amazon, along with Vodaphone CS are just as bad)

    PS. The above has no reflection on the actual delivery staff who I have always thought have done a great job.

    • simon
      3 years ago

      Yes 100% to delivery staff. 99% are friendly, deliver my post in bad weather and collect all the time. So no quibbles with them whatsoever.

      As you say everything else is a shambles.

      Pay your invoice online……for some reason you have to provide how much tax there was on the bill….Huh they know that already. Too cumbersome to work. No other company has ever done it this way.

      Revenue collection added 30 parcels to my order and I was asked to come and see the evidence if i wanted, when I got there they said it had accidentally been sent on I could not see the “evidence” but they were going to charge me anyway…WTF…. sales did nothing and basically just looked the other way, denying that anything was wrong. Their investigation was to ask the manager if he was lying and he said “No” …End of investigation.

  • Ashley Goodyer
    3 years ago

    I had a letter posted to me from Northampton to Essex last post Monday still not arrived is the bad weather to blame as it normally arrives next day so Id of thought Wednesday maybe delivered today are Royal Mail smrunning late due to backlog from bad weather last week

    • 3 years ago

      If you use Royal Mail often enough, you learn that things don’t always arrive on time, bad weather or not. Anything up to 10 days is not uncommon for a late item to finally arrive. And it can take even longer than that before it turns up.

  • Trina
    3 years ago

    Our business is in one of the worst hit areas, with 6-10 ft drifts. We could not get to our business until the 5th. Royal mail collects from us, and our postie said that was also their first day back at work. I had been trying to keep up with messaging ebay buyer, telling them there would be delays. I am now inundated with messages and complaints that consumers have still not received their items even though they were all dispatched on the 5th (manic day that was). I understand that RM must have a back log , but four days to get a first class item is a bit much. I am tempted to tell all my complaining consumers to take it up with RM, and yes ebay, although knowing every ebay seller on the East coast had severe weather will not stop bad feedback or seller defects. And you know why, buyers are always right. NO they not. How many of them risked their lives trying to get to work. None, they were sitting at home buying on ebay !!

  • Annoyed
    3 years ago

    Royal Mail need to get their act together and stop arsing about…..employ more staff and get on with it…. Fed up with their poor service and their lame excuses on how the bad weather has had an impact on them….. over a week has gone by and they are still blaming the bad weather!!

  • Steve Lane
    3 years ago

    Over the last week I have had over 20 customers claim that items did not arrive. Usually I may get one a month. Its not just through eBay its the website also. Trying to keep customers happy is proving to be a really hard job. All of the parcels were posted at the local post office and proof was obtained. The good news is that on the same day, I posted two parcels to Australia. Yesterday one customer phoned and one emailed to say their items had arrived. It would appear that sending something to the other side of the world is faster than sending something to this country.

    RM should be ashamed of their service over this bad weather. What would it have been like if we had a large prolonged spell of bad weather.

  • S butcher
    3 years ago

    I am glad I have read e mails on here. Am to having cases bought up against me as items sent still haven’t been delivered. I do have all receipts and sent message to all customers to explain. Most were great but still getting ignorant ones who have no idea what it’s like to live rurally and cut off!! Still going to contact eBay so they have it on record!!

  • 3 years ago

    I am dealing with this today. My items were sent on the 6th from the Channel Islands.
    I am having buyers on eBay ole OMG cases and complaining that their items haven’t arrived although I have proof of postage stamped by the post office.

    What am I meant to do now? It’s not my fault that RM are delayed however I am now being penalised that they have not been delivered.

    • 3 years ago


      Firstly you have to try and get the buyers on your side, as you posted the items from a post office you will probably have a receipt showing the 2d tracking number along with their postcode on the receipt.

      I would suggest that you take a photo of that and send it in a message to the buyers, this will show them that you are genuine and not just using bad weather as an excuse.

      You could also do the above to prove to eBay that you posted the items and hopefully they will remove any late delivery notification.

      Unfortunately, other than that there is little else you can do, RM do not show details of the tracking until they try and deliver the item. You can not call the buyers local delivery office and they rarely reply to any letters I have sent them.

      RM customer support is on a par with eBay & Amazon, so you do notget a lot of sense from them.

  • mark childs
    3 years ago

    I had a parcel sent 2nd signed for on 1st March. Not turned up yet. Still any hope I wonder, or lost ???

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