Letter delivery performance falls short of EU standards for second year running


The UNEX 2017 CEN module results from the International Post Corporation (IPC) have shown that letter delivery performance levels have fallen short of EU speed and reliability objectives for the second year in a row.

The results have shown that 55% of international priority and first class letter mail within Europe was delivered within two days of posting, 79.5% within three days and 94.2% within five days. Average delivery time was 2.9 days. These results cover a total of 32 countries: the 28 European Union member states together with Iceland, Norway, Serbia and Switzerland.

For the second year in a row, performance levels are below the EU’s speed objective of 85% of intra-EU mail delivery (delivery within three days of posting), and its reliability objective of 97% (delivery within five days of posting).

The UNEXTM results are from the UNEXTM CEN module, which is conducted independently by the external research firm Ipsos in Hamburg, Germany. An external audit has proven this module to be compliant with the CEN EN 13850:2012 standard for measurement of the transit time of end-to-end postal services for single piece priority mail and first class mail.

The results for 2017 from the UNEXTM CEN module are based on a total 67,000 test letters sent and received by 1,200 volunteers spread within the measured countries. Quality of service performance is measured by IPC’s UNEX end-to-end letter mail monitoring system.

The measurement covers the whole process from posting in the origin country to delivery to the final addressee in the destination country, including the time for collection, sorting and transportation.

More than 40% of the test letters contained radio frequency identification (RFID) tags, which are recorded by RFID readers as they pass through the postal facilities.

March 20, 2018


About Author


Dan joined Postal and Parcel Technology International in 2014 having spent the early years of his career in the recruitment industry. As assistant editor, he now produces daily content for the website and supports the editors with the publication of each exciting new issue. When he’s not reporting on the latest logistics news, Dan can be found apprehensively planning his next DIY project for his new home.

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