parcel delivery UK prices compared, with some european & worldwide prices

This is set of notes in progress that might be useful to someone. It not a full or up-to-date list, but is updated now and then to suit a vegan shoe shop that will soon sell more wholesale vegan shoes. For that purpose it is impartial.
low prices are red
This is a table - here is a narrow de-tabled version for viewing on mobile phone screens
Dates checked in italics like this 17.04.13.
prices including VAT are shown after an equals sign, as in 2kg £1=£1.20 or just 2kg =£1.20
Most quotes are for 1 or 2kg parcels in the UK.
Sometimes a shop in Europe asks the price of a wholesale carton.
These are usually up to 30kg 56x46x36cm and the usual example quoted is to 93220 GAGNY near Paris.
We haven't had a request for a carton to Canada Australia the USA or such for a year or two. Last time was first equal with P4D, and a site called Postagesupermarket about £15 extra for two heavy cartons. These were prices in the low hundreds with other quotes up to £100 more.

Cheaper parcel services are from post offices, drop-off points in networks of shops, & lockers run by bybox or inpost. There are cheap options to pick-up from UPS and Collectplus shops too.

Find a Post Office for Royal Mail parcels or letter box.
Find a store
Find a shop
Find a pickup shop
Find a hub box
Find a parcel shop (they collect from a porches too and like to deliver to a similar safe place).
Find a UPS access point
Find a locker if any courier services use these. Parcel2go still has something listed but check reviews before using.
Find a locker if any courier services use these.
(Bybox2Bybox-their own service- closed to retail customers in January 2015.)

Couriers and courier comparison sites ... scroll down for van delivery

UK delivery
eg drop-off at anywhere near London SW14 or collect. Low prices are red
30kg cartons are entered as 56 46 36cm
Open each provider in a new tab if you want to check several for quotes.


eg SW14 8BP
to TW9 3BS

European delivery
eg 93220 GAGNY near Paris
parcel 56cm x 46cm x 36cm

Royal Mail
Online prices are now sligthly lower since March 2016

These are prices from a post office counter if too large for a letter box .
Small parcel 35x45x16cm

UK Standard
     1st 2nd Class

100g 65p 56p

Large Letter
100g 98p 76p
250g £1.30 £1.22
500g £1.74 £1.58
750g £2.52 £2.14

Small Parcel
1kg £3.40 £2.90
2kg £5.50 £2.90

Medium Parcel
1kg £5.70 £5.00
2kg £8.95 £5.00
5kg £15.85 £13.75
10kg £21.90 £20.25
20kg £33.40 £28.55
Includes compensation up to
£20.00 £20.0

International Standard

Letters Europe World Zones 1 & 2
10g £1.17 £1.17
20g £1.17 £1.40
100g £1.57 £2.27

Large Letters
100g £2.55 £3.15 £3.30
250g £3.80 £4.75 £5.05
500g £5.15 £7.45 £7.90
750g £6.60 £10.15 £10.75

Small Parcels
100g £3.80 £4.45 £4.80
250g £4.10 £5.15 £5.60
500g £5.80 £8.05 £8.70
750g £7.20 £10.70 £11.40
1kg £8.60 £13.30 £14.05
1.25kg £9.85 £14.90 £15.85
1.5kg £11.10 £16.50 £17.75
1.75kg £12.30 £18.10 £19.60
2kg £13.45 £19.65 £21.40

There is a much cheaper 8-23 week economy service, previously called surface mail, for zones 2 and 3.
There are other rules for printed papers - both on the same link
Prices appear on a different url each year but for service specifications and what can be sent, there is a permalink: prices from a parcel shop

shop to porch
first price is for
45cm (L) x 35cm (H) x 16cm (W)
=2.79 0-2kg Small
=3.99 0-2kg Medium
=5.99 2-5kg
=7.99 5-10kg
=9.99 10-15kg
=1.00 Signed?

porch to porch
=3.29 0-2kg Small
=4.49 0-2kg Medium
=6.49 2-5kg
=8.49 5-10kg
=10.49 10-15kg
MPD Europe Economy book via My Parcel Delivery, but uses Hermes drop-off points
02kg 14.50=17.40
20kg 17.99=21.59 19.04.14

There may be other international couriers that use hermes or hermes drop-off as a first state. from porch to porch or any safe place.
Hermes couriers prefer to drop-off at a safe place such as a porch or work address where someone is always in, otherwise I guess you're not paying them a minimum wage. Collection takes a few days. A lot of things are charged extra. Ryanair service & (self ) employment conditions. Once the parcel is in the system it can be as quick as 3 working days if nothing goes wrong, so it's a 3-5 day delivery service.

+£2.40 Compensation £50-£100 if lost.
Long exclusion list includes crockery for £50 cover,
Prices on the international part of the Hermes web site to France
3-7 working day delivery after collection from a Hermes store.
£20 compensation.
Two weight bands, one volume, no obvious table of prices which might be different for different countries. For example southern Irish delivery is 9.74 and 14.28 dropped-off, cheaper than Royal Mail for parcels 1.25-2kg and 2-15kg.

02kg =11.69 drop-off 14.05 collected from a porch
15kg =13.64 drop-off 16.00 collected from a porch 16.02.16 - the site doesn't work for quotes below £22+VAT, but does give a price guide for pallets 5/09/16 from shop . Can be to a shop or to door. If door, they prefer to drop-off at a safe place such as a porch or work address where someone is always in. Sending to a shop isn't much advertised on their web site. You choose a delivery address and the nearest shops pop-up as alternative delivery addresses on a map.
Their maximum size is "about 50cm x 30cm x 30cm"
store to door
3-5 working days
£4.99 £6.29 £8.39
2 working days
£5.69 £7.29 £9.39
store to store
3-5 working days
£4.99 £6.29 £8.39
( = UPS Drop-off is similar. In the UK it's an option among UPS services drop-off and delivery to a UPS / Kiala agent in Europe)

( does not connect but is similar. Once in France you can post from one relay point to another for 30kg €18.50 (?), 10kg €12.35, 7kg €10.05, 5kg €7.80, 2kg €6.50. Package weight must be less than 20kg. Dimensions L + H must be less than 1.20m Also to Belgium, Spain, Luxembourg.) Prices checked 04.13
This service combines Collectplus and UPS who both do drop-off and deliver or drop-off and collect. The rates and service are new on 19/19/18 and may change to suit demand
2kg £7 drop-off and deliver. shop to door, no compensation for economy class untracked 3-5 days.

I don't know much about PO box services, but apparently,,, and are variations on the theme for people who want to collect mail anonymously or separately from their shared lodgings / landlady / flat where they are never in to open the door / address that couriers don't like delivering to / or whatever.

*next day delivery if dropped-off before 3pm.
Compensation available.

"from =13.19 for 2 day delivery" quoted early 2015
£35.52 - £47.09 by road for 16kg European delivery 11.04.2015 locker [click to find one] service for large mail order companies accept returns from a locker near the customer or deliver there. The service ceased to work sensibly or give rational tracking data during 2014-15. All reviews from that time seem to have been deleted on Trustpilot.
Locker - to - door prices
64x38x38cm. When people used to post reviews, they were bad.There is a man inside the lockers who speaks like this: at about 2'05"
06/16 cost by locker size. Not worth using unless improved since 2014. Parcel2go offers 12p off largest but with less direct contact. Pricing is from a quote box; there is more than one price for the smallest volume, otherwise 0-15kg 06/16
Used to competes on UK speed, not price, for packets. Scroll down front page for prices ex. VAT 10kg-25kg.
Changed to 30kg=12.90
01kg 15.00=18.00 on a 1cm cube; more on 56x46x36cm
15kg 19.00=22.80
30kg 25.00=30.00 17.04.13 UPS 2-5 day
from door or shop to door are same price;
£1 off for dropping-off at rare city depots
£1+VAT off second and further parcels collected together.
Volume measurements are smaller and more finicky than other couriers

02kg= 5.39
05kg= 7.92
10kg= 8.99

Next day:

25kg=15.60 economy

08.03.14 30kg=10.79
09kg £14.80+ VAT =£17.76 28.11.13 Hermes drop-off sz?
15kg £16.80+ VAT =£20.16 28.11.13 Hermes drop-off sz?
30kg £17.99+ VAT =£21.60 28.11.13
mentioned on moneysavingexpert same as P4D.
"would you prefer to DROP-OFF your parcel?"
shows on a peach-coloured bar at the top of the list of options. Click for a page of drop-off services in order of distance between you and the nearest drop-off point.
15kg £18.86 + VAT=£22.63 14.04.13
20kg £26.30 + VAT=£31.56 14.04.13
25kg £26.30 + VAT =£31.56 14.04.13 parcel force

30 kg £22.92 = 27.50 02/08/15 Packetport
Their free £5 for a £100 top-up is hard to use. When you get to the end of the £100, you can't pay part of the last parcel any other way than by another top-up. The minimum is £20 and Parcel2go require a "goodwill payment" if you ask for a refund.
shop to shop
by UPS
shop to door
by UPS
05kg 1cm cube
10kg 1cm cube
20kg 1cm cube
30kg 1cm cube

00kg 12.99=15.59
20kg 12.99=15.59 UPS drop-off 80cm max length 28.11.13
30kg 24.49=£29.39 own brand 28.11.13
service carries up to 40kg
compete on cartons and pallets worldwide
mainly 1 & 2 day services 30kg £38.31+VAT=£45.98 24.03.14
Web site shows prices from £27+VAT for light pallets
includes Highlands and Islands one day later
15kg 24.20=29.04 to a Europe business address; about a pound extra for residential address or for 30kg, so about £2 extra for 30kg to a residential address.11.04.13. Advertise that they try to be cheapest tracked service for 2kg to Europe, if not cheaper than normal Royal Mail 11.03.15
quick page to check - not many zones and bands
European Union only.
prices include any VAT if they are registered checked 11.03.15
Prices are for smaller-than-standard cartons 0-30kg and five zones of Europe. France £19.99 is in the cheapest zone. 1.03.15
30kg 8.19=9.83
night freight
30kg 18.39=22.07 parcelforce 04.06.13

quick international quotes to Europe by country or Paris
Parcelforce prices start at 4kg:11.29=14.15 only quote 21.63=25.96
DHL whatever you ask including 50kg

20kg £86.60=lots DHL 14.04.13
a 1cm cube is about £10 cheaper
Pharos  30kg
30kg 17.84=21.41 15.04.13 Don't quote for UK to UK France 30kg from £18 Fedex
no mention of VAT
Postage  30kg
04.04.13 good for international 30kg 17.78=21.34 14.04.13 quick page to check
25kg 25.28=30.34
30kg 32.82= 30kg 20.75=24.90

30kg 25.99=31.19 14.04.13 quick page to check closed closed Parcelmachine closed Freightsearch closed Mybybox closed Parcel2ship closed

Van delivery - ask drivers to quote or look for extra loads to carry
Some of the sites above also quote for pallet delivery





... each charge couriers a fiver or so if they win a bid to carry your stuff. Bidding takes a day or more.
At a glance, bids start between £50 and £100, rising with distance & difficulty. Distance is much more important than for the networks - £3 a mile for flexible times are one estimate from the mid 20-teens

For drivers

It's possible to bid on a couple of the sites if using a car, for example on a regular journey and looking-out for any requests that run close to the route. More usual is for van drivers to try to fill empty space and return journeys.

Drivers can also look for hitchhikers - this generation seem more keen to book through a liftshare site than to stand at the side of the road, and to offer commission to the website and an amount it suggests towards petrol as well.

  • makes no charge and attracts a lot of festival-goers,
  • Blablacar,
  • are the two largest ones;
  • and
  • are similar. A typical deal is that the site suggests costs towards petrol for a lift, but drivers might take a suitcase for the same price if it looks easy. Typical suggested payment about £5-£10
    Some hitchhiker car drivers offer lifts to Paris. Sharing a car Dover to Calais or back is another common offer and request.

    Drivers who find themselves without wheels probably know the local old-established van rental firms and the comparison sites. and the new generation of privately-owned cars on offer through P2P car hire agencies are worth a look too. As I write, there isn't one for vans although Easycarclub allows van rental for non-commercial work like a trip to the tip or Ikea, and one or two vans might crop-up on its web site. Mainly the cheap deals are on small cars mid-week, based in London and larger towns, but the market is changing fast and one P2P rental plans to run from airports, starting at Gatwick. The firms also hopes of competing with by-the-hour car clubs, hoping to automate the booking and unlocking in some cases.
  • - not just in the UK

    (Whipcar closed, Rentecarlo closed)
Some van drivers on the other sites offer trips to europe, but not many. If so, you could ask them to drop-off a suitcase at a Mondialrelay point, above.
  • Piggybee

    ...lists a few travellers on public transport who carry stuff. The sign-up process is easier than for drivers. Those customs officials who say "did you allow anyone else to pack your baggage?" could ean commission buy saying "why not: use pigybee?". . £2-£40 £9-?.
Eurolines allow two suitcases per passenger.
Megabus sometimes offers cheap tickets London Waterloo Station to Porte Maillot Coach park, Paris.Waterloo is a few stops down the track from us here near Barnes Common or Mortlake stations - usually platform 18 at Waterloo. Megabus allow "the size of a standard suitcase and should not weigh more than 20kg" in their hold and "one small piece of luggage that must fit either on your lap or under the seat in front of you".
These two are good London to Paris, which is the journey used for comparison, but there are others.
Pockets in jackets are not mentioned.
Footnote about fulfillment warehouses
There is another page about travelling if you are a person, rather than a parcel, on  varies closed
France outbound parcels - a price comparison web site is

Experiment for larger parcels and european delivery
self-updating links for a few weights and a couple of destinations on a 1cm cube
Courier sites may prevent old links being used, so this may not work

  UK 1cm cube
If collection times apply they
will be from SW14 8BP
France 1cm cube France 30kg
56 x 46 x 36
 Interparcel 5kg scroll-down for prices
30kg 5kg - lower prices on smaller
  5kg - lower prices on smaller
30kg 5kg
 P4D  5kg
30kg  5kg
30kg  compete on pallets   5kg
30kg   5kg

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