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Can I Refuse a Royal Mail Delivery?

Yes, you can refuse delivery from Royal Mail. If you’re present at the time of delivery and you’re certain you don’t want the item, you can tell the postman that you’re refusing it. They’ll return it to the sender. You can do this by:

  • Refusing the item to the postman when they deliver it. Simply tell them that you are refusing the item and they will mark it as “Refused – Return to Sender”.
  • Writing “Refused – Return to Sender” on the item and leaving it in your mailbox for the postman to collect.
  • Taking the item to a Post Office and asking them to return it to the sender.

If You’re Not Home

If you’re not home and the item doesn’t require a signature, the postman might leave it in a safe place or with a neighbour. If you still want to refuse it, don’t open it. Instead, take it to your local Post Office and tell them you’re refusing delivery. They’ll handle it from there.

Items Requiring a Signature

For items that require a signature, if you’re not home, Royal Mail will leave a “Sorry we missed you” card. You can use this card to arrange a redelivery or to collect the item from a local delivery office. If you decide to collect it and then refuse it, let the staff at the delivery office know.

Returning the Item

If you’ve already accepted the item but later decide you don’t want it, you can’t technically “refuse” it anymore. However, you can return it. If it’s a purchase, check the seller’s return policy. If it’s unsolicited mail, you can mark it as “Return to Sender” and pop it back in the post.

Consequences for the Sender

When you refuse a delivery, the item will be returned to the sender. Depending on the sender’s postal options, they might have to pay for the return postage. If it’s a company or individual you have a relationship with, it’s a good idea to inform them of your decision to refuse the item.

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