How much does it cost to start barcoding? section picture

How much does it cost to start barcoding?

Barcode Licence Fees are based on a scale in accordance with company size (determined by your annual turnover or estimated turnover for new start-ups).

Payment – The first year’s licence can be paid by credit card, bank transfer (EFT) or cheque. Please allow for 2 - 3 days for your EFT or cheque payment to reach us.

Direct Debit - A direct debit must be established to facilitate the annual renewal of barcode licences. This is a mandatory part of registration. Please note the first year’s licence and registration fees are not collected by direct debit. Direct debit details are completed online during the application process. If you need to submit an application form by post or fax you can download a direct debit mandate here.

The sections below outline the pricing for licence fees. If you have any questions about selecting the right barcode licence for your business please call our Helpdesk on 01 208 0660 and we will be happy to advise you.


Annual Licence Fees for Barcodes

Barcode prefix white boxBarcodes are created using a unique prefix allocated to a named and registered company. This prefix is called a GCP - Global Company Prefix. The size and variety of your product range, or the business application i.e. barcoding products, pallets or medical devices for example, will determine which prefix is most appropriate for your organisation.

If you are unsure which prefix is right for you please call Membership Services on +353 1 208 0660 and we will be happy to advise you.  

For Micro Businesses (e.g. less than 5 products, turnover under €1 million)

Artisan Barcode Licence (GCP 11) - an 11 digit prefix - creates 10 barcodes

For artisan producers and new small business start-ups only. (Max 10 product or outer case numbers possible.)

Annual RateVAT @ 23%Total
Turnover under €1 million€100€23.00€123.00

For all Businesses with more than 10 products

Standard Barcode Licences (GCP 9 or UPC for US market)

The standard prefix for general distribution. 

Annual RateVAT @ 23%Total
Turnover under €5 million€284€65.32€349.32
€5 million - €20 million€345€79.35€424.35
€20 million - €50 million€365€83.95€448.95
€50 million - €100 million€375€86.25€461.25
€100 million - €1 billion€395€90.85€485.85
€1 billion - €1.5 billion€435€100.05€535.05
Turnover over €1.5 billion€495€113.85€608.85

You can view the full details of all licence fees here including details of how to obtain large prefixes (GCP 7) for enterprise applications.


Barcodes for the US and Canada - UPC Barcodes

If you are exporting to the United States and/or Canada and your Distributor  may specifically require a UPC barcode rather than an EAN barcode. We recommend you confirm this with your customer before applying for a UPC Licence as many businesses refer to all barcodes as "UPCs" even though a standard 13 digit EAN barcode may be acceptable. 

If you do need a UPC please call us on 01 2080660 to discuss your requirements and for details of pricing. We will apply to GS1 US on your behalf for the required licence.


Optional Service - Barcode Symbol Image Generation & Download (via Barcode Manager)

barcode symbolOur tool for Members called Barcode Manager can be used to allocate and manage your barcode numbers as well as to generate an image file (eps, jpeg, png or gif) of your chosen barcode number. Downloading image files is an optional, additional service that uses a credit system.

Credits are purely for image generation and download and does not include the actual licence fee for the number itself. If your graphic designer or printer is capable of generating barcode symbols for you, as part of your packaging design process, you do not need to purchase credits and download symbols through Barcode Manager. 

Read more about barcode image credits and prices.