“Everyday" stamps featuring the late Queen's profile will be invalid in 100 days time following the introduction of barcoded stamps that were introduced in February to make deliveries more efficient and improve security. Under the changes, regular 1st and 2nd Class "everyday" stamps that feature the profile of Queen Elizabeth but no unique barcode will no longer be valid from 31 January.
Despite everyday stamps no longer being valid, themed, commemorative and non-barcoded Christmas stamps will still be able to be used after the deadline, which is not connected to the change in monarch, although the launch of stamps featuring King Charles will be made at the appropriate time after consultation with the Royal Household.
The postal group is moving to barcoded stamps as part of its modernisation drive, with added security features and new services with the stamps being introduced in February, saying they would open up possibilities for "new innovative services."
The long-term plan is that people will be able to watch videos, find out information and send birthday messages to each other through the barcodes which can be scanned with the Royal Mail app.
If members of the public can’t use their stamps by the deadline, everyday stamps can be swapped for barcoded stamps at no extra charge, with Royal Mail having aa swap-out scheme for old stamps for new, digitally enabled ones.