Many people send cards and gifts to loved ones through the post each Christmas, but it’s worth bearing in mind that there will be different cut-off dates, depending on the company you’re using and the service required.
Royal Mail, Parcelforce Worldwide, Hermes, DHL and DPD have announced their last posting and delivery dates for Christmas 2020.
Here’s what you need to know.
What are the last posting dates with Royal Mail for the UK?
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Friday 18 December - 2nd Class and 2nd Class Signed ForMonday 21 December - 1st Class and 1st Class Signed For and Royal Mail Tracked 48Tuesday 22 December - Royal Mail Tracked 24Wednesday 23 December - Special Delivery Guaranteed
It’s worth noting that Royal Mail Tracked 24 and Royal Mail Tracked 48 services are not available to purchase at Post Office branches.
What about abroad?
Monday 5 October - All non-European destinations (except South Africa, Canada, Middle and Far East, USA)Monday 12 October - Middle and Far East, Hong Kong, Singapore, South AfricaMonday 2 November - Canada, Cyprus, Eastern Europe, Greece, Iceland, Malta, Turkey, USAMonday 16 November - Western Europe
International Standard & International tracking and signature services
Wednesday 9 December - Africa, Asia, Caribbean, Central and South America, Far and Middle EastThursday 10 December - Cyprus, MaltaFriday 11 December - Australia, Greece, Eastern Europe(except Czech Republic, Poland and Slovakia), New Zealand and TurkeySaturday 12 December - Canada, Czech Republic, Finland, Italy, Poland, Sweden, USAWednesday 16 December - Austria, Denmark, Germany, Iceland, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Slovakia, Spain, SwitzerlandFriday 18 December - Belgium, France, Ireland, Luxembourg
International HM Forces Mail
Monday 30 November - Airmail to Operational HM ForcesMonday 7 December - Airmail to Static HM Forces
What are the last posting dates with Parcelforce Worldwide for areas in the UK?
The last posting date over the Christmas period with Parcel Worldwide varies, depending on which service is required.
The last posting date for Parcelforce Worldwide’s Next Day UK services express10, expressAM and express24 is Wednesday 23 December 2020.
However, for Parcelforce’s two day UK services, named express48 and express48large, the latest posting date is Tuesday 22 December.
What if I’m posting abroad?
For customers who wish to post abroad to Western Europe, the USA and Canada using the firm’s globalexpress service, parcels must be sent by Friday 18 December.
Those wishing to send post to Eastern Europe and the rest of the world using the globalexpress service will have to do so between Friday 4 December and Friday 18 December.
Parcels going to the Republic of Ireland via the company’s irelandexpress service should be sent by Thursday 17 December in order to arrive time for Christmas.
The 2020 Last Posting Dates are a guide only and may be subject to change, due to the impact of Covid-19. You can check the company’s website for the latest information regarding Christmas postal dates.
What are the depot opening times for Parcelforce Worldwide over Christmas?
These are the depot opening times for Parcelforce over the Christmas and New Year period.
However, Parcelforce explains that its depot drop off and collection services and opening dates may be subject to change due to the impact of the ongoing pandemic. Check the website for further information regarding this.
Wednesday 23 December 2020: NormalThursday 24 December 2020: Normal, drop off only (no collections)Friday 25 December 2020: ClosedSaturday 26 December 2020: ClosedSunday 27 December 2020: ClosedMonday 28 December 2020: Closed (Bank Holiday in lieu of Boxing Day)Tuesday 29 December 2020: NormalWednesday 30 December 2020: NormalThursday 31 December 2020 : Normal, drop off only (no collections)Friday 1 January 2021: ClosedSaturday 2 January 2021: Normal (except Scotland)Sunday 3 January 2021: Closed
For more information and to find your nearest depot, visit the depot finder.
‘We encourage customers to send early ahead of our busiest time of year’
Although Parcelforce Worldwide has announced its last posting dates for Christmas 2020, customers are encouraged to plan to ship their goods as early as possible, in order to ensure all Christmas promises are met and that delivery is guaranteed by Christmas.
Karen Whittingham, Business Strategy & Commercial Director, Parcelforce Worldwide, said, “Christmas Eve falls on a Thursday this year and our drivers will be working hard to deliver every parcel in time for Christmas. We encourage customers to send early ahead of our busiest time of year but we’ve announced our last posting dates to help our customers plan ahead for Christmas.”
A version of this article originally appeared on our sister site, The Scotsman.
When are the last Christmas posting dates with Hermes?
The last post dates for Hermes are:
Saturday 19 December. For customers who want a Hermes courier to collect a parcel from them.Monday 21 December (noon). For customers sending presents from Hermes’ nationwide network of ParcelShops, using the standard service.Tuesday 22 December (noon). For customers sending presents from one of Hermes’ nationwide network of ParcelShops, using the next day service.
What about DHL?
DateIs delivery available?Is collection available?Collected parcels delivery date21 DecemberYesYes22 December22 DecemberYesYes23 December23 DecemberYesYes24 December24 DecemberYesYes29 December
What is the Christmas delivery schedule for DPD?
It will be normal service every day from 18 December until the new year, except from Christmas Day, Boxing Day, 28 December, and New Year’s Day, where the service will be closed. The delivery service will also be closed on Saturday 2 January 2021 in Scotland.