Royal Mail, Parcelforce refuse to carry Samsung Galaxy Note 7 returns

UK owners of the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 will have to find alternative routes to return their recalled devices.

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The UK's Royal Mail has refused to handle Samsung's hazardous Galaxy Note 7 devices, setting a challenge for owners who wish to return their faulty products for a refund.

On Wednesday, Bloomberg reported that FedEx and United Parcel Service (UPS), two major US delivery networks, have stipulated strict rules for using their services to return Galaxy Note 7 smartphones.

While FedEx and UPS will return them to the South Korean tech giant provided they are packed in special boxes designed for faulty batteries and will not transport any of them by air, the UK's outright ban is proving more of a problem.

The UK's Royal Mail, Parcelforce UK, and the Royal Mail's international delivery service will not transport the devices no matter what they are packaged in.

Samsung has provided fireproof boxes to return the fire-prone smartphones alongside safety gloves for owners handling their devices -- which should be switched off and kept in a safe place until they are returned -- but this isn't enough for the UK courier service.

"In light of recent incidents and concerns raised by Samsung about its Galaxy Note 7, Royal Mail and Parcelforce are unable to accept the posting [of the Samsung Galaxy Note 7]," Royal Mail told the publication. "All customers are asked to detail what is in each package so that we can make sure that we are not carrying items that are hazardous."

The decision, made in light of the potential fire risk of the smartphones, will no doubt make recall efforts by the tech giant more difficult. Samsung said on Tuesday that the firm was permanently discontinuing the device after multiple reports of the smartphones catching fire, as well as replacement models.

UK owners of the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 can use DHL, which is still transporting them, or will have to wait for Samsung to arrange home collection of their smartphone -- if they bought the device from Samsung's online store. They may also be able to return their faulty devices to their wireless carrier.

Samsung is offering an exchange program for a Galaxy 7 or 7 Edge, with the addition of a refund covering the price difference. Alternatively, owners can request a full refund.