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Anybody use a franking machine?

(10 Posts)
Somethingfunny2 Sun 15-Sep-13 08:59:00

I'm a very small business sending a few "large letters" a day. I've find the basic sums and a franking machine would save me some money and time but I'm nervous.

DH has put my details into website and 4 sales reps have contacted me and there's lots of talk of "the normal hidden charges" . The deal I'm thinking of is for 5 years with Pitneybowes .

Any one with any thoughts or experience? Thanks.

Lonecatwithkitten Sun 15-Sep-13 10:06:59

Pitneybowes often do rent free no obligation periods with their smallest machines. This what we did and kept it.
Hidden charges: when the post office changes it charges it costs £50 to update software on machine, cost of printer charges (buy from cheaper companies online), sticky strips for parcels (again cheaper on line).
I signed up for 1 year only and now will sign for longer. Our annual postage bill was £4000 we have reduced it to £2500. That is without taking account the time taken standing in line waiting at the post office.
What you do need to check is where the metered mail boxes are near you that you would need to take the mail to. These are on the Royal Mail website they are open 11am to 6.30pm and physically locked outside these times. Mail must go in the box the date that it is stamped for, but you can advance the date and stamp ready for tomorrow.
The figures we worked on were that you need to be currently spending a minimum of £100 per month on mail to break even beyond that you make a saving.

Somethingfunny2 Sun 15-Sep-13 11:42:46

Thanks lonecat.

There's an offer on at the moment actually I just know that if I start with them I'll end up staying with them! A competitor who called made thinly veiled comments about all their hidden costs but I couldn't see what they could be. The Royal Mail changes charge is news to me ( and very steep!) so thanks for that. Nearly everything I send is in an envelope so labels aren't a problem.

What are printer charges?

I think the economics are ok as long as there aren't hidden things and having costs in one place electronically stored rather using petty cash and trying to keep receipts is almost worth in itself!

kateTotalpost Sun 15-Sep-13 13:47:36


I just spotted your post and I wanted to say you shouldn't have to pay for ANY hidden extras - these should all be included in a one price contract.

Yes rate changes happen once a year in April but you should not be charged extra for this.

As a rule we generally say anyone who sends 8 second class standard letters a day or more can make savings, but it sounds like you've already done the sums.

As has been stated you can get the consumables such as cartridges and labels cheaper online... Pitney Bowes try to tell customers that it is best to buy from them but there are some great UK made compatibles out there and you can save 30-40% on the Original Manufacturer ones.

Hope this is helpful but if you have any other questions please just ask.



Somethingfunny2 Sun 15-Sep-13 19:27:57

Thanks Kate, I assumed since I'd be renting a maintained machine they would be able to insist I used certain inks so thanks for that. Only one company has said that they were completely inclusive but they're twice the price of pb ( for the 5 year contract) so not that tempted.
Thanks again for the help.

Simong93 Mon 16-Sep-13 14:16:06

Hi Somethingfunny2,

Just thought i would put my two pennys in :D. Pitney bowes is a bad idea did you know you have to pay to top up your own machine with them and they are the only one out there who does that :S.

Also be carefull some franking supliers DON'T allow you to use any inks or labels that arnt suplied directly by them they will actuly blame any falts on them and void and service.

If you are still intrested in franking machine i have made some site that could help you my first on is enter all the details in there and that will tell you how much you can save by useing a franking machine. Then as long as the cost of a machine is the same as that it is cheaper.

My last bit of help for you is look at that it has all the neopost range of machine.

Lonecatwithkitten Mon 16-Sep-13 14:27:44

We get printer cartridges for about £17 as opposed to £49 from PB.

kateTotalpost Tue 17-Sep-13 08:00:37

Something funny if you haven't already tired us look up Totalpost, the best guy there to speak to is Mark Wright. He will talk you through all the options and will work out first of all if it is worth you having a machine and then what options you have.....

MelArt Tue 21-Jan-14 11:41:28

Sorry to bring this slightly dated post back up, but lonecatwithkitten - where do you purchase your printer cartridges from at such a discount? And how long does one ink cartridge last you? And what machine are you using? I currently buy from but have never ever seen cartridges for such a low price as £17?

Chantellegoodin24 Wed 04-Nov-15 20:18:54

Hi something funny2. I'm a mum of a little girl and know how important it is to manager work and being a parent, I actually work for Pitney Bowes and specialist in small businesses and parents working from home and making sure they receive the best on the market. Pitney Bowes is a very big company I'm sure you aware and offer loads of different types of machine depending on volumes of post. From what you have said you would benefit from a small postage meter which all rate changes are included in the rental.
I'm more then happy to answer any questions you have.

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