BFPO Service Update as at 1000Z 12 Mar 2021

Since the introduction of the new import/export regulations on 1 January 2021, BFPO have been advising customers of customs clearance issues within some locations. This is being further complicated by items received in BFPO from UK commercial companies, which do not comply with the new regulations. This has led to a number of countries refusing to clear private mail items and returning them to the sender. The issue is being felt across the whole UK mail industry and is not just affecting BFPO. The need for compliance has been raised on a number of occasions with UK commercial companies by BFPO and some are starting to change processes; it remains the sender’s responsibility to ensure customs compliance and the overseas community will need to ensure that any orders meet the requirements.

From 31 March 2021 for all locations, BFPO will be returning items which do not comply with current International private mail import/export regulations to the sender.

BFPO customers in all overseas defence locations are reminded it is their responsibility to inform people/companies that items sent from the UK must now be despatched as international mail and that they, as the sender, are responsible for ensuring customs compliance. This applies to all BFPO numbers/BF1 postcodes.

Family and friends of UK defence personnel and their dependants serving overseas, who post private mail items via UK Post Office Counters should note, that you should always be required to complete a customs declaration for private parcels destined for BFPO addresses overseas. Completion of customs declaration forms should be as accurate as possible and must include as a bare minimum, all contents, value and a valid signature. These details are important to ensure local customs authorities in the country of destination can assess your parcel contents and clear items for delivery as efficiently as possible.

BFPO understand that this decision is not ideal, but we need to ensure that existing and future regulations are met, and that compliant mail is not delayed or impounded as a result of a few non-compliant items.

Questions from the Community should be passed through the Community Hub mailbox –