Skip to content

The UK's parcel theft hotspots

Getting deliveries to your home is a great modern convenience. However, it can sometimes be unpredictable and frustrating, with the multitude of issues that can arise - from late deliveries to parcels going missing. And unfortunately, our research has shown this is a common occurrence, as 12.2 million Brits have had their parcel stolen before.

Surveying over 2,000 UK residents, we reveal which cities are hotspots for parcel theft and the most commonly stolen items in the country.

Cardiff has the highest rates of parcel theft 

Our research reveals that one-quarter (24%) of Brits worry about their parcels being stolen, however, those in Cardiff should be most worried, as one in three (34%) in the city have experienced parcel theft. 

Norwich (28.9%) and London (28.7%) followed in second and third place, as these cities also frequently encounter parcel theft.

When looking at locations with the lowest percentage of residents that have had a delivery stolen, Sheffield (12.1%) had the fewest, followed closely by Newcastle (12.3%) and Plymouth (16%).

As for the generations that are most likely to fall victim to parcel theft, those aged 25 to 34 top the list, as 37% admit to having their parcels stolen before. Those aged 55+ were found to least likely to have their parcels stolen, as 83% stated this has never happened to them before.

Over one-third of stolen parcels contain clothes, shoes or accessories

Those shopping for a new wardrobe should be extra cautious, our research reveals that 37% of stolen parcels contain clothing and accessories followed by gifts (21%), and technology and electronic accessories (14%).

Item % delivered items stolen
Clothing, shoes and accessories 37%
Gifts 21%
Technology & electronic accessories 14%
Baby/ Child goods 10%
Food & groceries 9%
Books 9%
Work packages 8%
Toiletries (makeup and skincare) 8%
Tools 8%

17% have contacted the police after having their parcel stolen

Getting a parcel stolen can be extremely frustrating and time-consuming as you figure out what to do in order to locate or report your stolen goods or get your money back. Our study shows that when a parcel has been stolen, over half (55%) of Brits contact the delivery company directly and 50% contact the retailer the delivery came from. While it may seem like a logical option to contact the courier service, if you’ve purchased goods from a retailer, it’s their job to deliver your items safely.

Theft is a crime, so it’s no surprise that 17%  say they have contacted the police to report their stolen delivery. However, while it’s important to report crime, the police won’t be able to help with getting you a refund or a replacement. 

Can you claim stolen deliveries on your insurance?

Over half of the UK (51%) are unsure if they can claim their stolen deliveries on their home or contents insurance, and one in ten Brits believe they can.

Not all home insurance policies will cover a delivery stolen from outside the home. It’s important to check individual policy’s terms and conditions, as this may fall under “contents left in the garden” or “contents left in the open” as it’s often called, which may be excluded in some policies.

Tips to avoid unwanted parcel theft

If you are worried about parcel theft, there are steps you can take to help avoid your future deliveries from being stolen.

Additional home security

You can consider adding additional security measures to your property to help deter thieves; this could include CCTV cameras, a doorbell camera or security lights.

Nominate a safe place

When ordering a parcel you can often add special delivery instructions. You can suggest areas where the parcel will be safer and won’t be easily spotted by potential thieves. Safe places could include behind a secure fence, garage or shed.  

Schedule your delivery 

Delivery times are not always reliable, and you may find yourself not home to accept your parcel. To help avoid theft of your delivered goods left outside of your home, many courier services will now let you specify the day of delivery, so you can be there to accept the parcel.

Pick an alternative delivery location

If you know no one will be there to receive your parcel, you can nominate a neighbour to accept the delivery or have it delivered to a family or friend’s home who you know will be in. Alternatively, many delivery services have an option to pick up your items in-store. 


The survey data collected for this study was based on a survey of 2,026 UK citizens, which took place in May 2022. 

To determine the number of Brits who have been impacted by stolen deliveries, we multiplied the survey results by the 2022 UK adult population - 53.93 million. (source: The World Population Review).