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EU cross-border parcel delivery services

EU cross-border parcel delivery services



Regulation (EU) 2018/644 — cross-border parcel delivery services


It aims to:

  • improve price transparency and regulatory oversight; and
  • ensure that citizens and small businesses have access to reasonably priced cross-border parcel delivery services.



The regulation sets out rules for cross-border parcel delivery concerning 3 main aspects:

  • regulatory oversight of parcel delivery services;
  • transparency of certain single-piece tariffs through publication on a website; and
  • assessments where tariffs are subject to a universal service obligation* to identify those tariffs that are unreasonably high.

Information to be provided

Parcel delivery services are required to provide certain information to the national regulatory authority (NRA)* of the EU country in which they are based including:

  • name, legal status and form, company and VAT (value-added tax) registration, address and contact details;
  • characteristics and description of services offered;
  • general terms and conditions for their services, including complaints procedure;
  • by 30 June of each calendar year:
    • annual turnover;
    • number of persons employed;
    • number of parcels handled;
    • name of sub-contractors;
    • tariff list for the current year.

Companies employing fewer than 50 people and providing services only in the country in which they are established do not have to provide this information, although exceptions do apply.


The tariffs subject to transparency measures will be published by the European Commission on a dedicated website by the end of March each year.

Assessment of cross-border tariffs

NRAs assess the affordability of the tariffs subject to the universal service obligation that they consider necessary to assess. They consider a number of elements including:

  • whether tariffs are affordable and cost-oriented, as well as transparent and non-discriminatory;
  • domestic and any other relevant tariffs for comparable parcel delivery services in both the dispatching EU country and the EU country of destination;
  • any application of a uniform tariff to 2 or more EU countries;
  • volumes, specific transportation or handling costs, other relevant costs and service quality standards;
  • the likely impact of the applicable cross-border tariffs on individual and small- and medium-sized enterprise users.

NRAs must submit an assessment to the Commission by the end of June of the relevant calendar year. A non-confidential version of the assessment must be published by the Commission within 1 month of its receipt.


Rules for the penalties for infringing the regulation are set by EU countries and must be effective, proportionate and dissuasive.


It has applied since 22 May 2018.


For more information, see:


Universal service obligation: EU countries must ensure that citizens are provided with a postal service of a specified quality anywhere in their country at an affordable price.
National regulatory authority (NRA): a body that regulates postal services at national level. It ensures the proper functioning of the universal service obligation and undistorted competition in postal services.


Regulation (EU) 2018/644 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 April 2018 on cross-border parcel delivery services (OJ L 112, 2.5.2018, pp. 19-28)


Consolidated version of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union Protocol (No 26) on services of general interest (OJ C 202, 7.6.2016, p. 307)

Consolidated version of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union — Part Three — Union policies and internal actions — Title XV — Consumer protection — Article 169 (ex Article 153 TEC) (OJ C 202, 7.6.2016, p. 124)

Directive 2011/83/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 October 2011 on consumer rights, amending Council Directive 93/13/EEC and Directive 1999/44/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council and repealing Council Directive 85/577/EEC and Directive 97/7/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council (OJ L 304, 22.11.2011, pp. 64-88)

Successive amendments to the directive have been incorporated into the original document. This consolidated version is of documentary value only.

Directive 97/67/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 15 December 1997 on common rules for the development of the internal market of Community postal services and the improvement of quality of service (OJ L 15, 21.1.1998, pp. 14-25)

See consolidated version.

last update 02.10.2018