Skip to navigation Skip to content Skip to footer

Citizens Advice responds to Ofcom's investigation into Royal Mail

15 May 2023

Matthew Upton, Acting Executive Director of Policy & Advocacy, said:

“Ofcom’s investigation should put Royal Mail under the microscope, not just for recent failings, but for missing its delivery targets for four out of the last five years.

"We know the strain Royal Mail is under, but people must be able to rely on their post arriving in good time, including vital medical letters and urgent bills. Year after year of service failures have real consequences. It’s just not good enough. 

"Ofcom must now take stronger enforcement action, including possible fines. Anything less risks sending a message that continually letting customers down is okay.”


Recent research by Citizens Advice has found that:

  • A quarter (23%) of people have experienced letter delays in the last month - that’s 12.3 million people.

  • As a result of the delay, over a third (38%) experienced negative consequences.

  • Almost a quarter (23%) were left feeling anxious or worried and nearly one in five (18%) missed an important health appointment as a result.

  • Worryingly, of those that missed a health appointment because of a letter delay, 70% missed a hospital outpatient appointment. 

The research was conducted by YouGov Plc. between 28 April to 3 May 2023 via an online survey of 4,356 UK adults. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all UK adults (aged 18+).

The charity has also mapped Royal Mail’s service from 2018-2023 according to regions.

Notes to editors

  1. Citizens Advice is made up of the national charity Citizens Advice; the network of independent local Citizens Advice charities across England and Wales; the Citizens Advice consumer service; and the Witness Service.
  2. Our network of charities offers impartial advice online, over the phone, and in person, for free.
  3. Citizens Advice helped 2.55 million people face to face, over the phone, by email and webchat in 2021-22. And we had 40.6 million visits to our website. For full service statistics see our monthly publication Advice trends.
  4. Citizens Advice service staff are supported by more than 18,500 trained volunteers, working at over 2,500 service outlets across England and Wales.
  5. You can get consumer advice from the Citizens Advice consumer service on 0808 223 1133 or 0808 223 1144 for Welsh language speakers.