Royal Mail Post and Go Home for Xmas

Royal Mail have announced ( at www.royalmail.com/postandgo )that their Post and Go machines, previously only used in exibition settings are to be used in real operational, customer-facing settings over the xmas period (Not just for collectors!) The idea is likely to be to  relieve the pressure on queues and provide additional capacity for the sale of stamps.

Machines A003 and A004 are to be put into frontline service (with some slight modifications) and loaded with the ‘Winter Greenery’ stamps.

The two locations involved are

Royal Mail Crewe,

Weston Road,

CW1 6AA

and

 

Royal Mail Bradford North DO

Inkersley Road

Bradford

BD1 4RS

 

 

 

Both sites are expected to be operational from 3rd December until Late January 2015 (when the machines are scheduled to be moved to their show locations).

 

BPMA 1st Class on 2nd Class Error-Not a real swap (sic)

The BPMA – 80th Anniversary of Inland Airmail -1st Class on 2nd Class Reel ERROR

The BPMA are currently marking the ’80th Anniversary of Inland Airmail’ (between 20th August and 20th October 2014) with a special overprint on their A001 Post & Go machine. The 1st and 2nd Class stamps carry an updated ‘overprint’ which includes a ‘Inland Airmail 1934’ plus an ‘Inland Airmail’ logo. So far , A001 has been vending second class Machin Stamps (bright blue – year code MAI2) from one roll and first class Machin Stamps (olive brown – both no year code ‘MAIL’ and year code MAI3 have been available) from the other. Initially the initial configuration was to vend a second class collectors strip of six consisting of 3x2nd Letter and 3x2nd Large but this was available for a few days only. Subsequently, the machine software was modified to vend just a strip two – 2nd and 2nd Large.

New Error

As part of this and subsequent software modifications a further ‘incorrect’ setting arose – known as a ‘Carousel error’- where incorrect stamps are added to the ‘Carousel’ that customers select to purchase their stamps. In this case those stamps that are added to the 2nd Class carousel in error (the 1st Class Letter and 1st Class Large Letter Stamps) meant that they were incorrectly dispensed from the 2nd Class reel – but all other purchases were unaffected. This meant that many collectors had visited the BMPA machine, purchased their Collectors Strips (which would have been printed normally) not noticing this error for the many days it had existed. It is known that a dealer from Germany and one from the Netherlands who purchased single stamps had not noticed the error until later as all of their collectors strips had been printed in the correct way on the correct reels . As this is not a ‘reel’ swap then only 1st class and 1st Class Large values exist printed in this way and ‘collectors Pairs’ of differing values cannot exist (as they would have been printed normally). So far only single stamps have appeared on Ebay although multiples of the same value could exist as well . http://www.ebay.co.uk/usr/postagelabelsuk/

Post and Go commemorates the Great War with symbolic Poppy overprinted stamps during Autumn Stampex 2014

Post and Go Single 'Solo' Poppy "First World War Centenary" Overprint Collectors Strip

Countdown to Autumn Stampex 2014

At Autumn Stampex 2014, Royal Mail will issue a special “Poppy” Post and Go stamp with a commemorative overprint “First World War Centenary” . The single image ‘Poppies on a reel’ will be also be available from NCR and Wincor units (A ‘first day’ of 21st October has been quoted in the Philatelic Bulletin, but this is unlikely to be enforced as branches will update their machines once stocks are available).

A mock up of the stamps is shown, and this is subject to change.

The stamps are available via pre-order here

Royal Mail Post and Go – Jersey location confirmed


Jersey Post are set to install their first Post and Go kiosk at Jersey’s Post Head Office in Broad Street, St.Helier (designated JE002). This is the first fixed location for a Jersey Post ‘Powered by Royal Mail’ Machine and will be a sister machine to the nomadic J001 (to be renumbered JE01) machine that has been touring the UK. This machine will be installed by the end of August.

Royal Mail Post and Go machine press ganged into naval service at Portsmouth Museum

Building on the success of the existing static location at BPMA, Royal Mail are installing the A002 kiosk as a static kiosk at the Royal Navy Museum in Portsmouth.  The Royal Naval Museum, in Portsmouth’s Historic Dockyard, is one of Britain’s oldest maritime museums. The Museum’s aim is to preserve and present the history of the ‘Fleet’ – the ships and the men and women who manned them.

Initially Union Flag and Machin stamps will be installed but thoughts must be as to why this location has been chosen and the potential for a ‘Ship’ or other Naval related  theme for the Post and Go 2015 issues. The first day will be 28th July 2014.

Acknowledgement:  http://iarroyalmailpostandgo.com/latestnews/

NCR Self-Service Kiosks-Welcome to the 21st Century Post Office

A new NCR “Self Service Kiosk” for Post Offices

During FebrNCR Post Office Self Service Machinesuary 2014, Post Office Ltd commenced the replacement of the existing Wincor-Nixdorf “Post & Go” self-service machines with units manufactured  by ‘NCR Corporation’ of America.

The NCR kiosks are designed for faster mail processing, an improved ‘customer journey’ and have the capacity to provide additional transactions  in subsequent upgrade phases. They also feature an ‘enhanced’ customer /staff interaction system (aka ‘traffic lights’)   to ensure the handover of  barcoded mail is smoother and a certificate of posting is issued where requested or required.

Collectors will more than likely be familiar with similar looking NCR Self-Service machines from other  UK retailers nationwide- for example those found in  Tesco and Marks and Spencer.

 What’s in the Box?

The NCR Self-Service kiosks are wider than the existing Wincor machines -but they are loaded with  a touch screen, scanner , payment “Pin Pad”, postal scales  and two stamp printers, plus a receipt printer.  Each ‘Stamp’ printer is fitted  with a ‘1st Class’ or ‘2nd Class’ media -controlled by a different    spindle size for each side to prevent incorrect loading of the stamp media.

The receipt printer produces double sided ‘Horizonesque’ “Certificates of Posting” /payment receipts.

The receipt generated appears to be very thin thermal paper and does not withstand handling very well – for collecting purposes it is recommended that a copy is taken to preserve  the information printed.

Customer Journey

As with the Wincor-Nixdorf units currently found in Post Offices, for customers posting mail there are two main options-you  can choose to either ‘Buy Stamps’ or ‘Post an Item’.

NCR Post & Go ‘NVI Stamps’

NCR Self Service Kiosk Collectors Strips

Where ‘Buy Stamps’ is selected – the usual options are available- six values of  ‘NVI’ stamps  printed from the 1st Class reel and two ‘NVI’ values printed from the 2nd Class reel.

These are available in singly, multiples or collectors strip format. Collectors strips are dispensed in strips of six (1st class reel) or two (2nd class reel).

Values available:-

1st Class Reel:- 1st Class, 1st Class Large, Europe 20g, Worldwide 10g, Worldwide 20g, Worldwide 40g

2nd Class Reel:- 2nd Class, 2nd Class Large.

They appear very similar to the Wincor, Hytech and IAR versions, but with minor positioning and font variances.

The ident string also will be familiar to collectors, comprising of the usual information – Branch code, machine number (for technical reasons this will likely be in the 60s) and the session/item number.

 

No more “White Labels”- Welcome to open value (OV) stamps

White labels are no more! as the NCR kiosks contains only stamp reels – only  “Open Value” stamps  for each item being posted will be printed by the NCR kiosk. 

The NCR kiosk can process 1st and 2nd Class Inland  mail including “Signed For” and “Special Delivery” . International airmail and “Signed For” and “Airsure” options are available. In addition Parcelforce  Worldwide Inland (24 , 48)  and and International Mail can also be accepted.

The relevant information gathered during the transaction is printed onto the Stamp Media.

For customers who choose to ‘Post an Item’ they will prompted to weigh the item, select the destination country and answer a couple of questions on the value and urgency of the item. Once this is completed the service required can be selected from a picklist- this includes barcoded inland and international Royal Mail and Parcelforce services.

NCR Post Office Self Service SD1 OV Stamp

Next a “certificate of posting” can be requested (or will be mandatory if the item is barcoded) and address details must be entered via the “touch screen keyboard.”

For inland items , where address details are entered the first four characters of the postcode will be printed on the stamp dispensed – firstly to guide the poster as to which item the stamp is for and second to prevent reuse as a ‘self cancelling’ device- items where this Postcode does not match the address on the item may be surcharged. (Unlike the white labels they are replacing , there is no ‘post by’ date shown on OV stamps)

If an item being posted  is barcoded or a ‘Certificate of Posting’ is requested then the “customer host” will be altered via the ‘traffic light’ system so that the transaction can be item being posted can be ‘handed over’ , the transaction paid for, stamps printed  and the “Certificate of Posting” issued.

Note- it is not possible to purchase ‘Open Value’ stamps in quantity – they are generated singly for each item being posted. It is also not possible to generate Open Value stamps for ‘make-up’ values- only for actual tariffs.

NCR Post & Go ‘OV Stamps’

NCR Self service units will no longer dispense white ‘Postage Labels’ but  instead print “Open Value’ (OV) stamps for all items being posted.

OV stamps will contain the information captured as part of the ‘Post an Item’ transaction such as Weight, Service Indicator and Price Paid.

Items being sent ‘First Class’ or via ‘Airmail’  or via Parcelforce Worldwide will have the OV Stamps printed on First Class media (i.e. with two phosphor bands)- e.g. Machin, Generic (Robin/Union Flag) or Pictorial (e.g Flora).

Inland items being sent second class will have OV Stamps printed on Second Class media (single phosphor band) .

NCR Post & Go ‘OV Stamps’- Decoder

Definition of NCR Post Office Self Service overprint

Definition of NCR Post Office Self Service overprint

 

 

NCR Self Service kiosks reach UK Post Offices- A new era for stamp collecting.

On 28th February 2014 , the UK Post Office launched Self Service ‘Postal Kiosks’ manufactured by NCR corporation into the Crown Post Office branch in Harpenden, Herts.

NCR Post Office Self Service Machines

Kiosks number ’67’ and ’68’ became operational on Friday 28th February 2014 in the Crown Office Branch in Harpenden, Herts.

These kiosks , similar to those seen worldwide (such as those in Australia) take the self service of the acceptance of Post Items to the next level.

NCR kiosks short and wider than the existing Wincor units that are currently found in over 200 Post Offices, feature faster processing of almost all Royal Mail and Parcelforce products that are usually only available at the counter.

Customers can choose from 8 different stamps for later use or process their mail quickly and easily using the intuitive touch screen- which produces  a never-seen-before Open Value (or ‘OV’) Stamp.

Almost all mail can be processed though the kiosks- both letters and parcels -including inland first and second class mail, International mail and priority mail that includes tracking and delivery guarantee worldwide.

For stamp collectors these new range of stamps-  have become available for the first time, featuring the ‘Iconic Machin Queens Head’ image combined with  electronic information printed at the point of mails acceptance -they are sure to prove very popular with collectors and customers alike. Welcome to the 21st Century Post Office!

2nd Class Letter NCR Kiosk OV Stamp

2nd Class Letter OV Stamp

 

 

 

 

 

 

For more information see http://postagelabelsuk.com/ncr-self-service-kiosks-welcome-to-the-21st-century-post-office/ (Log-In Required)

Royal Mail announce new Post and Go Values from 31st March 2014

Royal Mail have confirmed the new values that will be available from Post and Go kiosks from the prices changes this month. Via their ‘micro site’ http://iarroyalmailpostandgo.com/latestnews/  they have confirmed that the current ’10g’ and ’40g’ Worldwide values will be replaced by 60g Europe and 60g Worldwide values- an increase of £1 in the price of a Collectors Strip.

[table caption=”Post and Go ” width=”500″ colwidth=”” colalign=””]
no,Existing Value,Old Price,Updated Value, New Price
1,1st Class,60p,1st Class,62p
2,1st Class Large,90p,1st Class Large,93p
3,Europe 20g,88p,Europe 20g,97p
4,Worldwide 10g,88p,Europe 60g,£1.47
5,Worldwide 20g,£1.28,Worldwide 20g,£1.28
6,Worldwide 40g,£1.88, Worldwide 60g,£2.15
7, TOTAL,£6.42,NEW TOTAL, £7.42 [/table]
These new values will be available from Wincor or NCR kiosks situated in Post Offices throughout the UK, or from Royal Mail kiosks via their ‘philatelic exhibition program’ or their fixed sites  from 31st March 2014 onwards , either singly or as part of an updated ‘collectors strip’ format.     The withdrawal of the 10g and 40g values is likely to produce some rarities in the next few weeks – with certain issues/varieties only being available in limited numbers and locations.

NCR Post Office Self Service WW10g

10g Worldwide NVI Stamp-to be retired

Royal Mail /Jersey Post ‘Joint Flag Issue’

At Spring Stampex Jersey Post will join the Post and Go club and will taken ownership of their own ‘Series B’ machine- number J001 – that will vend a unique Jersey Flag  stamp with six relevant NVI values  on one reel alongside a GB Union flag stamp on the other – a truly unique, modern and innovative way of producing a joint stamp issue.

The print string will be (For items purchased at Stampex)

B2GB14 J001-0000-001

For the back office/preorders a different string will be used.

B2GB14 B001-0000-001 etc.

 

Royal Mail ‘Next Generation’ ‘Series A Machines to retire ?

Royal Mail ‘Next Generation’  ‘Series A Machines

The existing three Royal Mail Post and Go machines will be retired and semi-permanent sites found for them (promising overprinted versions! ). Before this, the last roadshow for these machines will be at York Stamp and Coin Fair  on 17th/18th January 2014 where machines A3 and A4 will appear for the last time in a mobile environment.