Royal Mail workers launched a new wave of strikes throughout December, with a series of industrial actions that have plunged millions of households sending gifts into misery as Christmas approaches.
The Communications Workers Union staged strikes amid a dispute with the company over wages and working conditions.
When are the Royal Mail strikes?
The CWU is planning 10 days of strike action, meaning that its 115,000 members will strike on the following dates:
Thursday, November 24 Friday, November 25 Wednesday, November 30 Thursday, December 1 Friday, December 9 Sunday, December 11
- Wednesday, December 14
- Thursday, December 15
- Friday, December 23
- Christmas Eve
Will postal strikes affect Christmas deliveries?
Yes. In particular, strikes on December 23 and Christmas Eve threaten to wreak havoc on late packages reaching millions of households.
During the last national strikes in August, the CWU’s wide representation among staff left nearly the entire postal network crippled, with only the most essential services and special deliveries continuing.
What is the deadline for sending Christmas cards and packages by Royal Mail?
Royal Mail urges customers to “take plenty of time” to ship items this year.
If you want the cards and gifts to arrive by Christmas Day, Submit 2nd class items by December 19 at the latestduration 1st class must be sent by 21 December at the latest..
Special deliveries and tracked guaranteed items must be shipped by December 22.. Special deliveries for which the firm is “guaranteed Saturday” can be sent on December 23.
Why are Royal Mail employees taking industrial action?
The dispute between the postal service and the CWU, which represents more than 100,000 of Royal Mail’s 140,000 employees, centers on pay and conditions.
After galloping inflation, the CWU argues that the company deserves a salary increase to cover the price increases for postal workers. Inflation in the UK hit 11 percent last month, the highest level in 41 years.
They’re also angry at changes Royal Mail bosses want to make in working conditions, including seven-day takeout, reduced letter deliveries to five days, increased automation of case and letter sorting, and later deadlines. more next day deliveries.
Royal Mail says the company is losing £1m a day and without radical changes there is no future for business. Bosses threatened layoffs and potentially disbanding if striking workers were not brought to their knees.
What if I’m sending international mail?
Then you should allow more time. Royal Mail told family and friends serving in the Armed Forces that the mail should be sent by December 2 at the latest.
For others using international economy mail, you missed the standard mailing deadlines to the Far and Middle East, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Africa, Canada and the USA. For Cyprus, Eastern Europe, Greece, Iceland, Malta and Turkey the deadline was November 25, while for Western Europe products had to be shipped by November 28.
Those using international standard or international tracking and signature services were too late for mail to the British Virgin Islands, Dominica and Anguilla.
But you still have time for every other place. December 1 for Australia and New Zealand, December 2 for mainland China, December 5 for the Caribbean, December 7 for Africa, the Middle East and Asia, December 8 for Cyprus and Malta, and December 10 for Eastern Europe and Turkey.
December 10 for Canada, Czech Republic, Finland, Italy, Poland, Sweden and the USA, December 12 for Western Europe and finally December 14 for Belgium, France and Luxembourg.
Rail passengers’ travel plans will also be affected by train strikes planned as Christmas approaches.