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Royal Mail - tracking not being updated for the last few days?

Posted 15th Dec 2020
I imagine COVID + seasonal demand at play here, but I have a couple of parcels at opposite ends of the country, tracked 48 and tracked returns 48, but neither tracking has been updated since last week. Does anyone know if Royal Mail have suspended scanning / updating tracking at the moment?

I think they stopped updated for a bit during the first lock down? but maybe it''s just coincidence that both my parcels are delayed and stuck where they are.

EDIT: since posting this one of my parcel's tracking updated to say it arrived at a mail centre. At least it's moving, and I guess I am thankful that so far I've not seen anything like the 15 days some people are experiencing. Up to now I've been lucky and only had 3-4 days for some 48 hr items.
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Royal Mail Tracking

If you have sent a parcel or you are waiting for one to be delivered you can use Royal Mail’s handy tracking tool on their website if you paid for their tracked postage. Simply pop in your tracking number to the box and click ‘Track your delivery’. The information that comes up in the tracking area is the most up-to-date information about your parcel. Here is a breakdown of what the different tracking updates mean.

  • ‘We’re expecting it’ or ‘Item despatched to Royal Mail’ means that the item has been given to Royal Mail and more updates will follow.
  • If you see an update that says ‘We’ve got it’ then it means that the item has begun its journey in the Royal Mail network.
  • Another update you may get is ‘Internal exception occurred’ this refers to some technical or system issues that Royal Mail are experiencing.
  • ‘In transit’ refers to the item travelling through the different points of the Royal Mail network.

These are a few of the different updates you may get when looking at your Royal Mail tracking, but there are also a few more so if you are still unsure what your tracking update means then make sure to check the “Help” section of the Royal Mail website.


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Where to find the Royal Mail tracking number?

Your Royal Mail tracking reference number is the 9 to 27-characters-long number on your label or on your Post Office receipt.

If you have lost your tracking number, unfortunately, there isn’t much you can do apart from contacting the sender or the recipient.


What to do if your Royal Mail Tracking hasn’t updated?

Sometimes you may have some Royal Mail tracking issues, such as Royal Mail Tracking not updating or if your Royal Mail Tracked 48 delivery has not arrived.

Firstly, it is always best to double-check you are entering the tracking number correctly, as well as making sure the number you are putting in is definitely the right one. Sometimes in times of high demand or when there is particular strain being placed upon the Royal Mail network, such as over the festive period, the tracking may take a little longer to update.

It’s also important to note that parcels or letters sent with Royal Mail Signed for 1st Class and Signed for 2nd Class are scanned twice, once when they are sent and again when they are delivered. This means that sometimes, the status of your order may not update for a while but once it is delivered it should change then.


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How to Contact Royal Mail

In some situations, such as when your Royal Mail Tracked 24 is not updating or Royal Mail Tracking is stuck on ‘We got it’ or even just if tracking hasn’t been updated in a long time.

If you are unsure whether your parcel is lost as it still hasn’t been delivered then you may want to contact the Royal Mail customer services. If you want to get in touch here is how:

  • Call: You can call the Royal Mail customer service team on the Royal Mail tracking contact number 03457 740 740. Their lines are open Monday to Friday 7am-8pm, Saturday 8am-4pm and Sunday 9am-4pm.
  • Text Phone: For those who are hard of hearing then you can call 03456 000 606. Lines are open Monday to Friday 8am-6pm and Saturday 8am-1pm.
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38 Comments
  1. Avatar
    I had a similar issue. Tracking was telling me nothing and then randomly it turned up today, having been in the 'Royal Mail Black Hole' for the last week or so
  2. Avatar
    Had a Tracked 48 parcel take 12 days to arrive. Seems to be normal at the moment.
  3. Avatar
    Author
    andywedge15/12/2020 16:47

    I had a similar issue. Tracking was telling me nothing and then randomly …I had a similar issue. Tracking was telling me nothing and then randomly it turned up today, having been in the 'Royal Mail Black Hole' for the last week or so


    Ah well, at least it's not just my parcels, otherwise I would start to be a little concerned, iirc correctly my postie said back in spring or summer they just weren't scanning a lot of items through the system until they were delivered. I guess every few seconds they can save off each parcel will add up at the moment.
  4. Avatar
    Author
    Tom.Wilson15/12/2020 16:48

    Had a Tracked 48 parcel take 12 days to arrive. Seems to be normal at the …Had a Tracked 48 parcel take 12 days to arrive. Seems to be normal at the moment.


    I'll be pretty cheesed off it takes that long, I really need to get a refund on an expensive item.
  5. Avatar
    c_mmxx15/12/2020 16:53

    I'll be pretty cheesed off it takes that long, I really need to get a …I'll be pretty cheesed off it takes that long, I really need to get a refund on an expensive item.


    FYI, tracking updated perfectly fine as it made its way (slowly) across the country. It just took a while!

    Your mileage may vary.
  6. Avatar
    I’ve had a parcel stuck in a sorting office in England for last 7 days with no update on tracking info...hoping it gets to Scotland in time for Christmas as I ordered the item in plenty of time...I have read Royal Mail are struggling to get deliveries out on time at the moment!
  7. Avatar
    I had a couple of parcels that took a week to get updated before delivery. Seems to be an issue with the demand on the service at the moment.
  8. Avatar
    I had a tracked parcel posted last Tuesday, the tracking said it should be with me on Friday but nothing then it said Saturday but again nothing then it said Monday which changed to Tuesday but it turned up on Sunday .
  9. Avatar
    I took a couple of parcels to the post office yesterday and the lad said that normal first class was taking a week at the moment but said they’ll arrive for Christmas - I really hope so
  10. Avatar
    Tom.Wilson15/12/2020 16:48

    Had a Tracked 48 parcel take 12 days to arrive. Seems to be normal at the …Had a Tracked 48 parcel take 12 days to arrive. Seems to be normal at the moment.


    I have reached the conclusion that the 48 stands for 48 days.
  11. Avatar
    My Royal Mail stuff usually turning up the next day even on 48 hour service.
  12. Avatar
    Our delivery’s are shockingly bad.
    But a 48 delivery from boots arrived on time.
    In fact the post man delivered it first thing.
    The came and did his round 6 hours later.
    Very strange
  13. Avatar
    c_mmxx15/12/2020 16:53

    I'll be pretty cheesed off it takes that long, I really need to get a …I'll be pretty cheesed off it takes that long, I really need to get a refund on an expensive item.


    Yes redicolous it takes 6 times longer than it should!
  14. Avatar
    Mich8ll815/12/2020 17:05

    I’ve had a parcel stuck in a sorting office in England for last 7 days w …I’ve had a parcel stuck in a sorting office in England for last 7 days with no update on tracking info...hoping it gets to Scotland in time for Christmas as I ordered the item in plenty of time...I have read Royal Mail are struggling to get deliveries out on time at the moment!


    I'd ask for compensation of them.
  15. Avatar
    Tom.Wilson15/12/2020 16:48

    Had a Tracked 48 parcel take 12 days to arrive. Seems to be normal at the …Had a Tracked 48 parcel take 12 days to arrive. Seems to be normal at the moment.


    Same here - items from China arrived quicker!

    Here's an example of a 48 hour Royal Mail service (It was a PS4 game from Currys!):

    Service used:

    Royal Mail Tracked 48™

    Updated on: Monday 14 December01:45pmDelivered byNewtownabbey DO Hide earlier journeyMonday 14 December05:01amDue to be delivered today byNewtownabbey DOSunday 13 December02:33pmItem ReceivedNorthern Ireland MCSunday 13 December02:33pmItem ReceivedNorthern Ireland MCSunday 13 December08:38amItem ReceivedNorthern Ireland MCThursday 10 December10:48amItem ReceivedPSC NorthamptonMonday 30 November05:43pmSender despatching item
  16. Avatar
    aLV42615/12/2020 19:21

    Same here - items from China arrived quicker!Here's an example of a 48 …Same here - items from China arrived quicker!Here's an example of a 48 hour Royal Mail service (It was a PS4 game from Currys!):Service used:Royal Mail Tracked 48™Updated on: Monday 14 December01:45pmDelivered byNewtownabbey DO Hide earlier journeyMonday 14 December05:01amDue to be delivered today byNewtownabbey DOSunday 13 December02:33pmItem ReceivedNorthern Ireland MCSunday 13 December02:33pmItem ReceivedNorthern Ireland MCSunday 13 December08:38amItem ReceivedNorthern Ireland MCThursday 10 December10:48amItem ReceivedPSC NorthamptonMonday 30 November05:43pmSender despatching item


    Coincidentally mine was also from Currys!
  17. Avatar
    Also I accidently upgraded to Prime and ordered a lot of items - all with "guaranteed" next day delivery. Of course 3 days later some of them arrived, the remainder the next day. I did get an automated phone call advising of the delay. Not that it bothered me, but if a company makes a "next day delivery guarantee" (and charges for it!) then they should stick by it - either that or update delivery time expectations!
  18. Avatar
    craigbelperbrown15/12/2020 17:13

    I had a couple of parcels that took a week to get updated before delivery. …I had a couple of parcels that took a week to get updated before delivery. Seems to be an issue with the demand on the service at the moment.


    Weird how a pandemic changes things - I can accept that there may be delays, but I think Royal Mail are milking the excuse too much. I live a mile or two from the largest sorting office in Northern Ireland and used to have 2 deliveries a day! Of course cutbacks way before the pandemic reduced deliveries and increased laziness (I got other peoples mail, a lot of non-deliveries (excuse given as flooding - it was a puddle in the street!) long delays and I watched them fill the "collect at depot" form in their van and post that through the door!) They do take great pride in being heavily automated so I really don't understand the lack of updates.
    I just checked their website and they updated it with this statement:
    Our delivery operation is a key part of keeping the country moving. In fact, we have put even more resources in to keep delivering. This includes additional overtime provision and a very significant investment in protective equipment for our colleagues.

    TL;DR
    So the demand on service is up and I accept that these are challenging times, but I don't think it justifies a 15 day delivery time on a 48 hour service!
  19. Avatar
    Royal mail are a joke at the moment
  20. Avatar
    Tom.Wilson15/12/2020 16:48

    Had a Tracked 48 parcel take 12 days to arrive. Seems to be normal at the …Had a Tracked 48 parcel take 12 days to arrive. Seems to be normal at the moment.


    I had a tracked 48 take 15 days to arrive, finally delivered today
  21. Avatar
    I had a buyer open a case o Ebay for a late item yesterday and today the pacel arrived even though tracking says still in the system.

    Lucky for me the buyer was honest and closed the case when it arrived or Paypal may have refunded them.
  22. Avatar
    Ukguy10115/12/2020 19:10

    I'd ask for compensation of them.


    It’s curry’s I’m dealing with...can’t even get a reply from them which doesn’t suprise me one bit!
  23. Avatar
    ding15/12/2020 19:40

    Royal mail are a joke at the moment


    Totally agree, bunch of clowns.
  24. Avatar
    Mich8ll815/12/2020 20:24

    It’s curry’s I’m dealing with...can’t even get a reply from them which does …It’s curry’s I’m dealing with...can’t even get a reply from them which doesn’t suprise me one bit!


    Yes their customer service is abysmal!
  25. Avatar
    galareho15/12/2020 19:49

    I had a tracked 48 take 15 days to arrive, finally delivered today


    jeez thats rubbish, if you sent it via Antartica it would of been quicker!
  26. Avatar
    Ukguy10115/12/2020 20:42

    jeez thats rubbish, if you sent it via Antartica it would of been quicker!


    It was a delivery to me, my daughters main Christmas present! We’re having lots of issues
  27. Avatar
    i sent a letter first class post Monday last week, still hasn't arrived yet.

    i had a whole load of mail delivered on sunday morning and as i do the royal mail survey, it asked me to double check that i had put in sunday as a delivery date, so it wasn't expecting deliveries of mail on sunday morning.
  28. Avatar
    mutley115/12/2020 21:01

    i sent a letter first class post Monday last week, still hasn't arrived …i sent a letter first class post Monday last week, still hasn't arrived yet. i had a whole load of mail delivered on sunday morning and as i do the royal mail survey, it asked me to double check that i had put in sunday as a delivery date, so it wasn't expecting deliveries of mail on sunday morning.


    Bet their still blaming it on the virus even though it started 9 months ago!
  29. Avatar
    galareho15/12/2020 20:54

    It was a delivery to me, my daughters main Christmas present! We’re h …It was a delivery to me, my daughters main Christmas present! We’re having lots of issues


    Hope you get ya pressie soon via this snail mail! Hassle you don't need in this crappy year!
  30. Avatar
    Ukguy10115/12/2020 21:10

    Bet their still blaming it on the virus even though it started 9 months …Bet their still blaming it on the virus even though it started 9 months ago!


    i think the post man hides all the post at home and then sends his son out on the weekend to do his week's deliveries.
  31. Avatar
    mutley115/12/2020 21:14

    i think the post man hides all the post at home and then sends his son out …i think the post man hides all the post at home and then sends his son out on the weekend to do his week's deliveries.


    Lol.😄😄😄 It wouldn't surprise me one bit the idiots they employ! My postman is a polish guy can't speak english always misdelivering, useless.For a communication company why do they employ an idiot who can't communicate.
  32. Avatar
    Ukguy10115/12/2020 21:10

    Bet their still blaming it on the virus even though it started 9 months …Bet their still blaming it on the virus even though it started 9 months ago!



    What do you expect Royal Mail to do? The virus hasn't gone away. The service is crippled by the restrictions forced by the Coronavirus, and no doubt many absences caused by those ill and self-isolating.

    There was already a massively increased demand for online shopping because shops are closed. On top of that, it's now Christmas. Royal Mail is swamped with packets- they can't increase their processing capacity in the matter of a few months.

    Unlike many people, Royal Mail workers can't work at home, nor do they get furloughed- they have to carry on as best they can, under the restrictions forced by the Coronavirus. So many people are ungrateful for the efforts of workers who keep going and do their best even in the impossible conditions forced by this Coronavirus.
  33. Avatar
    Ukguy10115/12/2020 21:23

    Lol.😄😄😄 It wouldn't surprise me one bit the idiots they employ! …Lol.😄😄😄 It wouldn't surprise me one bit the idiots they employ! My postman is a polish guy can't speak english always misdelivering, useless.For a communication company why do they employ an idiot who can't communicate.


    I see you've got a fitting username to go with your vitriol...
  34. Avatar
    Mich8ll815/12/2020 17:05

    I’ve had a parcel stuck in a sorting office in England for last 7 days w …I’ve had a parcel stuck in a sorting office in England for last 7 days with no update on tracking info...hoping it gets to Scotland in time for Christmas as I ordered the item in plenty of time...I have read Royal Mail are struggling to get deliveries out on time at the moment!


    I have this exact issue. Parcel dispatched and at mail centre on 11th and tracking hasn’t changed since. Also coming to Scotland. I think it’s not going to arrive for Christmas, it’s a good thing this isn’t a main present and I have bought my daughter other gifts!
  35. Avatar
    fi.mclaughlin18/12/2020 10:17

    I have this exact issue. Parcel dispatched and at mail centre on 11th and … I have this exact issue. Parcel dispatched and at mail centre on 11th and tracking hasn’t changed since. Also coming to Scotland. I think it’s not going to arrive for Christmas, it’s a good thing this isn’t a main present and I have bought my daughter other gifts!


    Mines finally showed up today without any notification of it getting delivered..it’s frustrating when things are ordered well in time for Christmas delivery and left hanging on(mad)
  36. Avatar
    Royal Mail is shaking up the rules on stamps, so if you've got a stash that say '1st' or '2nd' class on them then by 31 January 2023 you'll no longer be able to simply stick 'em on a letter and use them. This is because Royal Mail is moving to a new barcode system, which these stamps don't have.

    If you try to use these stamps – which impacts all those with the Queen's head on them that say '1st' or '2nd' class, or any other price, or they're Christmas-themed – after this cut-off date they will not be valid and you will have to pay a surcharge. Though Royal Mail is yet to confirm what this surcharge is or how it will work in practice.

    moneysavingexpert.com/new…o-u
  37. Avatar
    I posted an item from Scotland and it has arrived at Luton delivery office and it has been there since 30 April and that was the day it was due to be delivered, tracking has not been updated at all and I’m beginning to think they have stolen my expensive packaged. Seeking advice from the police due to theft of my parcel
  38. Avatar
    Catherine_Tonerge505/05/2022 20:54

    I posted an item from Scotland and it has arrived at Luton delivery office …I posted an item from Scotland and it has arrived at Luton delivery office and it has been there since 30 April and that was the day it was due to be delivered, tracking has not been updated at all and I’m beginning to think they have stolen my expensive packaged. Seeking advice from the police due to theft of my parcel


    The Police will not assist you
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