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Postage labels FAQ

The postage process is a big part of your overall customer relationship. Find answers to your most important postage questions here.



What are the benefits of printing labels on eBay?
By printing your postage label on eBay, you'll save yourself time and potentially money, too.
Your postage label is filled out automatically with your buyer's name and delivery address - no need for data entry or writing labels out by hand.
You can print your labels on an ordinary printer, using regular A4 paper - no need for special labels.
You can create and print a pre-filled packing slip, detailing what you are sending to your buyer.
Paying online means less time at the Post Office - or save yourself the trip altogether (Royal Mail and Parcelforce Worldwide services).
Tracking information appears automatically in My eBay for both you and the buyer (services that offer tracking, e.g. Parcelforce Worldwide or Collect+).
Parcelforce Worldwide labels can be purchased at discounted prices.

Which delivery services can I print labels for?
You can print postage labels for services offered by Royal Mail, Parcelforce Worldwide and Collect+.

You can print labels for items up to 30kg. Services offered include a range of delivery speeds from Express Delivery (1-day delivery) to Economy delivery (3-5 days).

If you're using a Royal Mail service with tracking, or a Parcelforce Worldwide, you'll need to drop your item off at a Post Office. Find your nearest Post Office here

If you're using a non-tracked Royal Mail service, just drop the item into a post box.

For Collect+ services, you'll need to drop your item off at a Collect+ shop. There are more than 4,500 shops in the UK, many of which are open at convenient, extended hours. Find your nearest Collect+ outlet here

How do I pay for my label?
You can pay for your postage label quickly and easily through PayPal. You'll be invited to link your PayPal account and eBay postage labels so that you can pay for future labels automatically, without having to log in to your PayPal account every time. Creating this 'Billing agreement' is free and you can cancel it at any time.

Note: To set up a billing agreement, you'll need to have a valid funding method on file for your PayPal account.

If you'd rather not set up a billing agreement, you can simply pay for each label individually, by logging into PayPal when prompted each time.

How do I cancel my billing agreement for label printing?
To cancel your billing agreement:
  1. Log in to your PayPal account and go to Profile / My Money.

  2. Under My Preapproved Payments you'll see the billing agreement, which is for 'eBay Intl AG'.

  3. Click on it and you'll find a link to cancel the agreement.


How do I print a label after my item sells?
From My eBay:
  1. Go to Sold items in My eBay and select each item you'd like to post.

  2. Select Print Postage Label.

  3. Enter the package weight and verify that the 'Deliver To ' and 'Return Address' information is correct.

  4. Choose the delivery service you'd like to use from the drop-down list.

  5. Click on Purchase Postage.


For how long can I use my postage label?
You need to post your Royal Mail items by the end of the working day after the day you purchased the label, otherwise it won't be valid. The 'Post by' date on the label shows the last day on which the label will be valid for posting.

Parcelforce Worldwide labels are valid for 5 working days after the day of purchase.

Collect+ labels are valid up to 14 days after the day of purchase.

Can I reprint a postage label?
Yes. If you have a problem printing, you can reprint the label within 24 hours of purchase.
Can I print a certificate of posting on eBay?
You can print a certificate of posting once you have bought a Royal Mail postage label through eBay. The certificate needs to be stamped by Post Office staff to be a valid proof of postage.

Note: Although a certificate of posting is useful to ensure that you can claim compensation from Royal Mail in case of loss or damage of your item, it's not sufficient evidence in order to be protected when a buyer claims not having received the item. Only proof of delivery is accepted under the eBay Money Back Guarantee policy. You can get proof of delivery for items sent by Royal Mail by using a recorded service.

Can I print international labels and customs forms through eBay?
You can't currently print labels for international delivery via eBay. However, if your item has an international delivery address, you will be directed to 'PayPal Postage Label' which offers labels for international delivery services.
Can I use postage labels printed via eBay for deliveries to the Channel Islands?
No. Since items sent to the Channel Islands (Jersey, Guernsey, Alderney, Herm and Sark) require customs declarations, these labels can't currently be printed on eBay.
The postage labels are in PDF format. How do I know if I can print PDF documents?
PDF documents can be viewed and printed using Adobe Acrobat Reader. If you don't have the software, you can download Adobe Acrobat Reader for free.
I've made a mistake. Can I get a refund or cancel my label?
Yes. If your label is lost, damaged or no longer required, you can cancel the label and request a refund online up to 7 days after the label purchase.

To void a label:
  1. Go to My eBay and click Sell on the left-hand side.

  2. Click Postage Labels.

  3. Find the label and select Void from the Actions column.

When you request the refund you need to specify a reason (postage destroyed, changed mind, postage lost, label did not print) which the carrier will assess. If the label isn't used, the refund will be processed within 21 days and the funds will be returned to the same PayPal account from which the label was bought.

Can I print more than one label for an order?
Yes. You can buy and print as many labels as you need for an order - for example, if the item you sold requires multiple packages or the buyer has bought more than one item from you and you want to combine the postage.

In My eBay - Sold, simply select Print postage label again and buy as many labels as you need.

Can I request a free carrier pickup for Parcelforce Worldwide services?
No. Collection by Parcelforce Worldwide is not currently available for labels purchased through eBay.
What compensation cover is provided in the event my item is lost or damaged?
The value of compensation cover is specific to each delivery service. You can see details of the compensation cover available for each service by clicking on Full Service Description from the Purchase and print your postage label screen. 

You can also compare compensation cover available from all the services suitable for your item by clicking Compare delivery services on the Purchase and print your postage label screen. 

Are there any kinds of item I cannot send with a postage label printed through eBay?
Yes. Each carrier has their own list of restricted items.

Royal Mail's list of prohibited goods

Collect+ will not carry certain items as detailed in their terms and conditions

Parcelforce Worldwide will not carry certain items as detailed in their Conditions of Carriage

Will I get a receipt for my purchase of a postage label?
An email is automatically sent to you when you buy a label through eBay. The email confirms the price of the label and provides any tracking information if you are using a tracked service.
How do I get a VAT receipt for the purchase of a postage label?
None of the Royal Mail delivery services for which labels are offered via eBay are liable to VAT, so you will not need a VAT receipt.

Collect+ services are liable to VAT and Collect+ will email you a VAT receipt for your purchase automatically.

Parcelforce Worldwide services are liable to VAT. A VAT receipt can be requested directly from Parcelforce Worldwide by sending an email to VAT@parcelforce.co.uk. Please include the tracking number of your parcel.

Will my buyer be aware that I have printed a postage label?
When you print a postage label via eBay, an email will be sent to your buyer indicating that you are preparing postage and providing any tracking information associated with the label.

You can add your own information to this email by using the Add message to buyer email option on the Purchase and print your postage label screen.

What if I don't want eBay to send an email automatically to my buyers when a postage label is printed?
To turn off the automatic email:
  1. Go to My eBay and click on the Account tab.

  2. Click Site preferences on the left-hand side.

  3. Under Postage and packaging preferences, click Edit.

  4. Choose No in the Send buyer an email with P&P information line.


Is there a charge to print postage labels on eBay?
No. There is no charge for printing eBay postage labels, nor for using your PayPal account to pay for them. You pay the same price as when buying your postage at the Post Office or Collect+ shop. Parcelforce Worldwide labels are discounted on eBay.
Do I need a special label printer or adhesive labels to print postage labels on eBay or PayPal?
No, you don't need a special printer or labels. You can print the postage labels on standard A4 paper and tape them to the package.
Is the postage amount printed on the label?
No, the price you paid for your label isn't shown on your label. The price you have paid can be identified by the carrier from the barcode on the label.
Is tracking information available for postage labels printed through eBay?
If you are posting with a service that offers tracking, both you and your buyer can monitor the status of the package.

For Royal Mail services, the tracking number is provided on a further label which will be added to your parcel at the Post Office by staff.  You'll be given a record of the tracking number and you can enter it for your buyer in My eBay.

Why is the service I've planned to use not suitable for my item?
Most delivery services have upper limits for weights and dimensions. Depending on the weight of the item you entered, particular services may not be suitable for your item. However, please be careful not to enter a weight less than your item's true weight once packaged - if you underpay the postage, there's a likelihood that your buyer will need to pay a surcharge.
What is a return address and do I have to include one?
A return address is the sender's own address - usually either the home address or company address.

You're not obliged to include a return address with a postal item, but it's in your own interest. If your item can't be delivered for any reason, your return address will allow your courier to send it back to you, so it won't be lost. Therefore a return address is always included on a label printed through eBay.

This does not mean that you automatically accept the return of your item by the buyer.

Can I see all the labels I bought in one place?
Yes, in the Sell section of My eBay. Click Postage Labels on the left-hand side to see and manage all labels you've bought in the last 180 days.
How do I send a Royal Mail Small Parcel?
If you're having trouble selecting a Royal Mail Small Parcel (because one of the smallest dimensions exceeds the 8cm limit), just clear the dimensions and click Recalculate. Now you can select Small Parcels from the options.
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