20 January 2024, by Emily Proctor

In the last quarter of 2023, Dutch postal service PostNL was increasingly late in its delivery of mail and packages. According to their latest figures, by the end of the year, one in five letters delivered by the company arrived late. 

PostNL delivers around 7 million letters a day 

The postal company, which is responsible for the delivery of an average of 7 million letters every day, was only able to deliver letters the next working day 82 percent of the time in the last months of 2023. This has had implications for Dutch post as a whole since PostNL is such a significant part of the Dutch postal network. 

The poor showing at the end of the year further reduced PostNL’s annual on-time performance, with only 88 percent of letters arriving within the next working day in 2023. The government has a legal requirement for this number to be 95 percent, so that people across the country can be secure in the knowledge that their post will arrive punctually. 

PostNL could be fined for delays in consumer post

Given the legal requirements, PostNL could now see a fine imposed on them for the delays in mail delivery. This already happened in 2019, when 94 percent of consumer deliveries were made on time – just 1 percent below the requirement. PostNL had to pay a fine of 2 million euros for the breach. 

In terms of business post, the company’s record remains better. In 93 percent of cases, the company delivered commercial mail on time, though still below the legally required 95 percent. A PostNL spokesperson told ANP that the last quarter of 2023 was much busier than expected, adding that it was: “Not only because of the holidays but also because of the election mail to which we paid a lot of attention and care.”

Image: Ronald Wilfred Jansen / Shutterstock.com

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