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Mail and parcels

Post arriving at Lashkar Gah by Chinook helicopter.

Enduring free post service to Op HERRICK

The Enduring free packet service has been authorised for Op HERRICK. Family and friends in UK and BFPOs can send packets up to 2kg in weight, free of charge. Items must be handed to a counter clerk at a UK Crown/Sub Post Office or overseas BFPO.

Is there a Parcel service?

  • There is NO Parcel Service to Op HERRICK. However, small boxes can be sent as long as they weigh under 2kgs. (This is due to limitations on airfreight space in order to prevent any congestion in the delivery of critical stores and supplies to theatre).

What is the size limit for items of mail?

  • The overall dimensions are as per Royal Mail letter service: Length + Depth + Width = 900mm with greatest single dimension not greater than 600mm. Max weight 2kgs (shoebox-size items are ideal).

Unsolicited mail

Can welfare parcels (unsolicited mail) be sent to frontline troops?

  • No. An item of mail up to the maximum weight of 2kgs can be sent to NAMED personnel only. By accepting mail to unnamed personnel, delays to named personal mail will occur.

Why is mail restricted to named individuals?

  • While Royal Mail and BFPO recognises the desire of individuals to support troops in Afghanistan, the freepost scheme is specifically intended to support the families and friends of servicemen and women serving on entitled operations only.
  • Well-wishers remain able to send goodwill messages to theatre via other BFPO services including the use of Electronic Bluey and the Bulletin Board.
  • Welfare parcels can be sent to charities such as UK4U Thanks! - follow the link in the right-hand panel.

Is the enduring freepost service for items under 2 kgs available when sending from a BFPO address to the UK?

  • No. The freepost service is available for family and friends sending mail to HM Forces personnel at qualifying BFPO locations only.

Special delivery

By using the Special Delivery service, the Forces Free Mail Service does NOT apply and full postage rates will need to be affixed to the item.


Forces free air letters (FFALs)

There is a Forces Free Aerogramme (Bluey) service available to personnel on operations. Stamps are not required. Blueys can be posted into a standard post-box in the UK or BFPO post-box overseas.


Commercial items

Personnel can successfully receive ordered goods from the commercial sector but the companies in question have to use separate postal arrangements. Each will have a preferred method and courier.

Onward shipment costs are likely to be passed on to the individual. All items must comply with the weight and size limitations for Op HERRICK mail.

Commercial mail does not qualify for the Freepost Service and 2kgs is the maximum weight limit for any one item.


Mail prohibitions

In compliance with strict regulations the British Forces Post Office (BFPO) will not carry any item of mail containing substances identified by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) as hazardous. In addition the BFPO will not carry items listed as prohibited by the country of destination.

BFPO rules and regulations are frequently updated. For details on all current BFPO services please visit the official website in the right-hand panels.

Family and friends of soldiers can also send Electronic Blueys (e-blueys), Photo Blueys and Fax Blueys. The fax bluey is a great way of sending pictures home or receiving pictures and it is printed out in colour.

Wherever possible these systems should allow electronic mail to be delivered in 24 hours, even to some of the more remote locations.

Where soldiers have access to a computer, they can also keep in touch via social networks like Facebook and MySpace, or by MSN messaging and e-mail.

Medical and casualty

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Find out about how we deliver care to sick and injured troops in Afghanistan

Mail and parcels

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Find out about how to send letters and parcels to serving personnel in Afghanistan

R&R

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Find out about Rest and Recuperation, the time-off soldiers enjoy at home with their family

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