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in proportion

Pricing in Proportion

Pricing in Proportion is a Royal Mail postal price structure in the United Kingdom introduced on 21 August 2006. It is also used on the Isle of Man by Isle of Man Post, but not on the other island post networks Jersey Post and Guernsey Post. The system has three bands - letter, large letter and packet. The price of mail is based on the size of the item as well as weight. It was started by the Royal Mail to make the pricing of mail reflect what was the actual cost of the postage.

Royal Mail originally claimed that 80% of items would be unaffected by the change which would also be "revenue neutral". This was then revised down to 70% (i.e. 30% cost more or less than before).

The system


The size is a piece of mail that has a maximum length of 240 mm (9.45"), a width of 165 mm (6.50") and a thickness of 5 mm (0.20"). Its weight must not go over 100 g (3.53 oz). In simple terms, it a letter that is no bigger then an C5 envelope with no more than a few sheets of A4 paper. Examples are most letters, bills and statements.

Large Letter

The size is a piece of mail that has a maximum length of 353 mm (13.90"), a width of 250 mm (9.84") and a thickness of 25 mm (0.98"). It can weigh up to 750 g (26.46 oz). In layman's terms, it is anything smaller than a C4 envelope with about 100 pieces of A4 paper. Example of this are many brochures, catalogues and company reports, some magazines, or DVDs in their boxes.


Anything bigger then a large letter is classed as a packet, so catalogues like the Argos book or some of the stationery catalogues, VCR tapes, posters in their cardboard tubes and parcels.


  1. All the imperial measures are up to two decimal places and are just a rough guide. Royal Mail uses metric throughout their postal system.

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