Welcome to VAT on Postage .co.uk | VAT on Postage information for Franking Machine Users

This web site is to simplfy the Information surrounding VAT on postage and in particular postal services for Franking Machine Users.

The Royal Mail have recently announced VAT changes to a number their services that will become liable for VAT from 2nd April 2012.

VAT on Royal Mail services is nothing new, with effect from 31st January 2011 some of Royal Mail services that can be accessed and paid for through a franking machine did become liable for VAT. In simple terms, if you didn't or do not have a franking machine fitted with a 'SMART' Meter then you will no longer be able to access these services via your franking machine.

A Franking Machine fitted with a 'SMART' meter enables data to be transferred back to the Royal Mail on the type of services used. This in turn automatically generates a VAT statement and allows you to claim the VAT back from HMRC and more importantly allows you to be able to continue using the service.

Unfortunately whenever the Royal Mail make the slightest change some franking machine companies or lone sales people can take advantage and use the confusion to lead customers in to believing they have to change their franking machine when in fact they don't. Worse still, we've already seen a number of customers receive aggressive marketing communications who already have a smart meter in their franking machine but are so confused they're unsure as to whether the new changes affected them until we advised them accordingly. If you're unsure please call us on 01543 572 776 or email us by CLICKING HERE.

Cleanmail Advance Customers

One Major change this April is VAT on Cleanmail Advance and customers who use this service must have a smart meter franking machine. If you do not have a smart meter and use Cleanmail Advance you will have to either get your machine's software updated or change your whole franking machine to continue to benefit from the Cleanmail discounts via franking machine. Some models certainly affected are the Neopost 'IJ' range as many high volume machines such as the IJ65/70/75/80/85 were sold with cleanmail but cannot be updated with a smart meter and must me changed. If you are affected by this and would like an emailed quotation on a 'Smart' meter Cleanmail Advanced enabled machine or are unsure please call us on 01543 572 776 or email us by CLICKING HERE.

Franked Mail

If you’ve got a standard franking machine, you won’t be able to use it to buy any of the products affected by the introduction of VAT. If you have a "smart" meter which can handle VAT, you’ll be fine. Speak to Mailcoms on 01543 572 776 or your supplier to find out more.

Royal Mail services that are or will become liable to VAT:

Express and Packet services

  • Standard Account mail
  • Special Delivery™ 9.00a.m. stamp, franking and account
  • Special Delivery™ Next Day account
  • Royal Mail Tracked® and Tracked™ Next Day
  • Royal Mail Sameday®
  • Packetpost
  • Packetsort
  • Packetsort Plus
  • Packetpost Returns
  • Recorded Signed For™ will also become liable to VAT if purchased as an add-on to a standard rated service. In all other circumstances it will remain VAT exempt.

Business Mail

  • Cleanmail®, Cleanmail® Plus and Cleanmail® Advance
  • Automated Standard Tariff Large Letter
  • Mailsort® (70, 120, 700 and 1400)
  • Walksort®

Marketing Services

  • Advertising Mail (70,120, and 1400)
  • Sustainable® Mail
  • Big Book
  • Royal Mail Heavyweight
  • Mailmedia®
  • Door to Door™


  • Pressstream®

Response Services

  • Response Services (inc. Licence fees)

International Services (VAT will only be added to EU destinations)

  • International Contract Tracked and Secure Services (Airsure and International Signed For)
  • International Contract Services (Mixed Mail, Letters, Flats, Packets, Destination Sort and Mbags)
  • International Airsure®
  • International Admail and Admail Packets
  • International Redirections

Outbound Mail Services

  • Business Collections

Inbound Mail Services

  • Timed Delivery™
  • Early Extraction
  • Early Collect
  • Selectapost
  • Local Collect®

Other Services

  • Business Mail Secure
  • Admail
  • Callers Services
  • Rural Deliveries
  • Rural Carriage of Goods
  • PO Box® Services
  • Redirect Diversion
  • Ministerial Pouch services
  • Do not redirect

Contract Services

  • Pre-Sorted Delivery
  • Mailroom Management
  • Mailroom Consulting Services
  • Royal Mail Relay®

Some services that remain exempt from VAT, in addition to free services:

UK Services

  • 1st and 2nd Class (stamped, franking)
  • Special Delivery™ Next Day (stamped and franking)
  • Standard Parcels
  • Recorded Signed For™ (if purchased with an exempt service)
  • Keepsafe™

International Services

  • International Airmail
  • International Surface Mail
  • International Signed For
  • All HM Forces Mail (BFPO)

Got questions about how VAT on postal services could affect your business? Contact Royal Mail Customer Services on 08456 113 421 or Mailcoms on 01543 572 776, Monday to Friday, 8.00am to 6.00pm.

Please visit the Royal Mail page by clicking here on this subject by clicking here for further updates on VAT on postage and other Royal Mail services.

For the latest 2019 postage rates guide for standard Royal Mail letter, large letter and packet services for both franking machines and stamps please CLICK HERE.

Are you affected by the VAT changes?

Replacing your Franking Machine

If you are looking for a replacement franking machine contact Mailcoms on 01543 572 776 or CLICK HERE to email your request. Mailcoms can offer some of the best solutions available without 'pressure' sales tactics.

Updating / Upgrading your franking Machine

Some Franking Machines can be updated to cope with the VAT changes, CLICK HERE and input your details to find out if your franking machine can be updated to allow it to process VAT affected products and services.

Contact Details

  • info(at)mailcoms.co.uk
  • 01543 572 776
  • 3 & 4 Heritage Park, Hayes Way, Cannock, Staffordshire, WS11 7LT