In light of the recent government announcements, Post Office would like to share our thoughts on what this means for our customers, the services we offer and the precautions we are putting in place to keep our customers. postmasters and colleagues safe. Post Offices have been designated as an essential service by the government and we continue to thank our postmasters for keeping their branches open where possible and serving their communities.
“The vast majority of Post Offices are open. Many are located in convenience stores, newsagents or stand-alone branches that are allowed to be open by the government. Customers are able to get cash, deposit cheques, pay bills as well as send and collect parcels. These are vital services, particularly for many vulnerable customers.
Many Post Offices have floor markers and other information on posters to help customers stay two metres apart. Additional protective equipment is also being sourced for postmasters. Where a Post Office has to close (for example, if it’s in a library), posters should be displayed showing the nearest branch. Please check our Branch Finder app for all the latest information for Post Offices that are open.”
Nick Read, Chief Executive of the Post Office
What are we doing?
Our branch network
Branches will be staying open as far as possible. We are ensuring our cleaning processes are stepped up to the appropriate levels needed to combat the virus.
You can help everybody by sanitising your hands after handling cash, keypads, envelopes, parcels and counter tops and when you enter a new environment. We're making hand sanitiser available to customers, and remember to stay home if you've got symptoms.
Use our Branch Finder tool for the latest information on possible branch closures near you.
We are working hard to provide the best possible service whilst protecting the health of our people and customers, in line with guidance from Public Health England (PHE).
Royal Mail and Parcelforce Worldwide have made some adjustments to parcel handling procedures and services. We have described the key changes here. For detailed information see the Royal Mail changes and the Parcelforce changes.
Royal Mail have made a temporary change to Special Delivery Guaranteed items:
For items posted from Thursday 19 March 2020 onwards, Royal Mail no longer guarantee deliveries by 1pm the next working day. They will still prioritise Special Delivery parcels and letters, but due to uncertain local staffing levels a guaranteed delivery time is not possible.
Where they can, they will aim to deliver by 1pm or before the end of day, but this is not guaranteed.
Special Delivery Guaranteed by 9am service remains unchanged. Royal Mail still guarantee delivery by 9am.
From 18 March 2020 Parcelforce Worldwide have suspended service guarantees but will seek to ensure all reasonable endeavours to maintain service levels where they can.
Royal Mail and Parcelforce Worldwide have temporarily changed the procedure for those services where they would normally capture a recipient’s signature on delivery in the UK. Postmen and women will not request a signature but will capture the recipient’s name and will ensure they take in the item.
PHE has advised that there is no perceived increase in risk of contracting coronavirus from handling post or freight. From experience with other coronaviruses, these types of viruses don’t survive long on objects, such as letters, parcels or identity documents. However, it is sensible to wash your hands thoroughly after contact with anything outside of your home and to avoid touching your face.