International Incident Bulletin

Last updated: 7th of December 2023


Welcome to our international incident bulletin; a roundup of any issues that may be impacting our parcel and letter services to and from countries around the world. We keep this information as up to date as possible, with information supplied to Royal Mail by the various foreign national postal authorities.

Service Update


Delivery of International items to some destinations may take slightly longer than usual.  In addition to the Tracking information available through the Royal Mail website, senders and recipients may be able to access additional tracking information on the destination posts webpages.

Customers sending items requiring a customs declaration (such as goods or gifts) internationally should purchase postage online, through shipping solutions or over the counter at Post Office branches rather than using Postage Stamps or Meters.    


Import operations continue to perform a full service with some minor delays.  

We would like to apologise to impacted customers for the disruption.  

Import Control System 2 (ICS2) 

ICS2 is a regulatory change required by the EU, focused on continuing to improve the security of parcels shipped internationally. It allows customs authorities to identify items which may require control earlier in the supply chain and take the appropriate action. Sending countries must provide the required parcel/customs information. This means that any item that requires a customs declaration (including gifts, samples, goods and other categories) must have the relevant customs documentation attached and associated Electronic Data must also be supplied. You can use an approved Royal Mail or Third-Party Shipping Solution where this is captured so you can continue exporting with the required compliant electronic data. From the 1st July 2023 any items containing goods that do not have mandatory data fields completed will be at risk of being delayed, returned, or even destroyed. Please see here or here for more information.

Recently Updated

  • Norway 
  • France
  • Israel
  • Indonesia 
  • Mexico
  • South Africa 
  • Iceland
  • Italy
  • Niger


Start date: 9 August 2021
Latest update: 23 August 2021
End date: Ongoing
Incident: No available route

Original Incident
There is currently no route to Afghanistan as carriers have cancelled flights since Monday 16th August 2021.

Start date: 28 August 2023
Latest Update: 31 August 2023
End date: Ongoing
Incident: Infrequent Despatch

Please note that customers currently using our Tracked Heavier services to The Falklands may experience delays. Dispatch is infrequent and longer transit times should be expected. This will also effect the tracking events which you may typically expect to see as part of this service. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.

Start date: 7 August 2023
Latest Update: 11 August 2023
End date: Ongoing
Incident: IT Issues

Please note that due to IT issues customers currently using our Tracked Heavier services to France may experience slight delays. This may also effect the tracking events which you would typically expect to see as part of this service. We are working to resolve these and apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.

Start date: 6 November 2023
Latest Update: 13 November 2023
End date: Ongoing
Incident: Earthquake and Volcanic Activity 

Icelandic Post has declared a state of emergency after a series of earthquakes in the Reykjanes peninsula. A risk of a volcanic activity in or around the town of Grindavik has led to authorities ordering the town’s evacuation which is expected to last for a minimum of two weeks.

During this time Icelandic Post will not be able to deliver mail in Grindavik (post codes 240-241). Registered items will be forwarded as possible to temporary addresses of residents. As a result, delays are expected for this region until situation returns to normal.

Start date: 16 September 2021
Latest Update: 26 June 2023
End date: Ongoing
Incident: Customs delays

Latest Update
Our service to Ireland is operating as normal. However, items that require the payment of import taxes by the recipient may take longer to be delivered as payment is required before items are released from Irish customs.

Please note: Delivered Duties Unpaid items sent to Ireland are handled as follows:
•Where a mobile number and /or email is provided, the recipient will receive a text and / or email and a letter with the amount of tax to pay plus An Post’s processing fee.
•Where just the address has been provided, the recipient will receive a letter.

In both situations the recipient will receive instructions on how to pay and will have 16 working days to make the payment before the item is returned. The pay by date is included in the customer notification.All items are held in the Dublin Mail Centre Campus before being released, once payment is received. If payment is not received by the payment due date or the customer rejects the item then it is returned to sender.

IOSS HS Code Restrictions
The Irish Custom authority have notified us that they have relaxed their import controls on certain goods and HS codes. Customers sending items to Ireland via IOSS are advised to check the latest restricted HS Tariff codes implemented by Irish Customs. To access the list of restricted HS Tariff codes, please visit our Ireland Page.

Start date: 2 October 2023
Latest Update: 9 November 2023
End date: Ongoing
Incident: Security Situation

As a result of the current situation in Israel we are experiencing delays with many flight cancellations. This is a fluid situation and may change at short notice. Throughout the country, the retention period for unclaimed items has been extended to 30 days. All items are subject to delay and we will continue to provide updates as we receive them. 

Please note at this time, we are unable to accept items addressed to Gaza or Khan Yunis and The West Bank.

Start date: 20 November 2023
Latest update: 23 November 2023
End date: Expected to end 28th November 2023
Incident: Strike

Post Italiane have informed us that a 24-hour strike has been called for 24th November 2023 by Major Unions. 

Disruption is to be expected with regards to the handling of mail during the strike and over the weekend into next week.

As result, delays may be observed during and immediately after the strike 


Start date: 2 July 2021
Latest Update: 26 June 2023
End date: Ongoing
Incident: Infrequent Service

Latest Update
Connecting flights to Kiribati have been available again since the 15th of December. However, please note this service is infrequent and therefore customers should expect items to take between 2-3 months to reach their final destination.

Start date: 11 October 2023
Latest Update: 31 October 2023
End date: Ongoing
Incident: Hurricane Otis 

Mexico Post have informed us that due to category-five Hurricane Otis passing through the port of Acapulco on Thursday, 26 October, postal services have been suspended in the affected areas until further notice. A situation of force majeure has been declared in the affected areas where power and telephone lines are down, infrastructure and roads have been damaged. As result, delays should be expected in the following areas until further notice.

Municipality / Postcode Range

Ayutla de los Libres - 39200 - 39229

Acapulco de Juárez - 39300 - 39937

San Marcos - 39960 - 39997

Petatlán - 40830 - 40859

Zihuatanejo de Azueta - 40880 - 40897

Técpan de Galeana - 40900 - 40929

Atoyac de Álvarez - 40930 - 40958

Coyuca de Benítez - 40970 - 40997

San Luis Acatlán - 41600 - 41637

Ometepec - 41700 - 41736

Cuautepec - 41840 - 41860

Start date: 24 February 2022
Latest Update: 26 June 2023
End date: To be advised
Incident: Airspace availability

Original Incident
Due to the situation in neighbouring Ukraine, we have been advised that Moldovan airspace is closed. We are working with our postal and transportation partners to put in place alternative routes. An alternative transit route is in place for Moldova. However as this is a non-direct route, please be advised that there may be short delays to the delivery of your item.

Start date: 28 July 2023
Latest Update: 27 November 2023
End date: Ongoing
Incident: Postal Operation Resumption

Niger Post has updated us that Mail operation has resumed. As result, mail service & despatch is to resume from 2nd December 2023.

Start date: 2 August 2023
Latest Update: 31 August 2023
End date: Ongoing
Incident: Extreme Weather

Norway Post have informed that extreme weather has been ravaging central and southern parts of Norway since earlier in the week. Heavy rainfall, flooding and landslides have caused road closures and affected infrastructure but things are now improving. Delivery of parcels and mail within Southern Norway (0001-6999) has now been restored and Northern Norway ((7000-9999). Delays should still be expected outside of this 

Start date: 28 February 2022
Latest Update: 26 June 2023
End date: Ongoing
Incident: Service availability

Latest Update
We are still despatching postal items to Russia. We are continually monitoring the situation and will provide an update if there are any changes to our service moving forward.

No service since October 1991.

Start date: 1 October 2023
Latest update: 1 November 2023
End date: Ongoing
Incident: Delays

Please note that customers currently using our services to South Africa may experience delays. We are continuing to export as normal however are aware of extended processing times locally at present. We will provide further updates as they become available.

Start date: 5th July 2023
Affecting Postings: 12th April 2023
End date: Ongoing
Incident: Service Suspension

Restrictions on this route continue to be challenging owing to civil unrest in the country and as a result a full service suspension is now in place. Any items currently held in OEs are expected to be returned to sender. 

No service since December 2012.

Start date: 30 January 2023
Latest update:9 February 2023
Incident: Earthquake

Latest Update

Turkish Post has informed that two large earthquakes have hit the Southern and South Eastern regions of the country on the 6th February and a state of emergency has been declared.

This will severely impact mail operations and delays are to be expected across all affected areas

Start date: 2 July 2021
Latest update:15 December 2021
End date: To be advised
Incident: Infrequent Service

Connecting flights to Tuvalu have been available again since the 15th of December. However, please note this service is infrequent and therefore customers should expect items to take between 2-3 months to reach their final destination.

Start date: 24 February 2022
Latest update:28 October 2022
End date: To be advised
Incident: Service availability

Latest Update
We continue to make regular mail despatch to Ukraine transiting via our Postal Partners. Ukraine Post has updated that the country’s infrastructure has suffered severe damage. The attacks on the power grid and local energy facilities are necessitating rolling power cuts lasting from one to four hours. In some cases, following a direct missile strike, power may be cut off for several days in certain areas. In areas without active hostilities, all Ukrposhta post offices will remain open. In places with up to 24 hours power outage, Ukrposhta employees will hand out postal items and pay out money orders and upload the delivery data into the system at a later stage, once power and Internet access are restored. Sorting facilities are equipped with electricity generators to ensure uninterrupted work and maintain normal customs and sorting procedures. However, operationally there may be delays. Therefore, delays should continue to be expected for items destined to Ukraine until further notice.

No mail service to Donets 83-87, Luhansk 91-94 Crimea 95-98 and Sevestapol 99 since 2014.

Start date: 13 February 2023
Latest Update: 9 March 2023
End date: Ongoing
Incident: Tropical Cyclone

Vanuatu Post have advised that a State of Emergency has been declared for the whole country in the wake of two cyclones which have struck the country. The state of emergency is expected to last for at least 6 months. Postal operations will continue throughout by delays should be expected 

No service since March 2015.