Cheap Barcodes

How to avoid ongoing fees for barcodes?

Many people believe that it is necessary to pay ongoing fees for barcode. This is not the case. The numbers we sell are outside of GS1’s control. They are still part of the same system, hence, we can sell these for a one off cost.

Please see the following to get an idea of the history behind this:

GS1 was established in most parts of the world in the 1990’s . They licensed their 13 digit barcode numbers to their members (and as discussed previously charged both membership fees and joining fees). However, there was a separate organisation in the USA – the Uniform Code Council (UCC) – which sold 12 digit barcode numbers to their members for a one-off cost (there were no ongoing license fees). The UCC was effectively competing with GS1. Their 12 digits numbers were effectively a subset of the 13 digit system.

In the late 1990s, the UCC merged with GS1, becoming GS1-US. As part of this change, they decided to start charging annual license fees for all of their members, including those who had paid a one-off fee for barcode numbers in the 1990s. Of course, many of these members weren’t happy with the new annual license fees, and so a group of them ended up in class action law suit with GS1. The members won in the courts in the early 2000s, resulting in a multimillion dollar settlement by GS1. A further consequence of this court case is the proof that the original numbers issued by the UCC in the 1990s are outside of GS1s control now, and hence no license fees are required.  These are the numbers are bought by resellers and onsold. They are ‘new’ numbers, in that they have never been used on a retail product, and are part of the GS1 system.

Other cheap barcodes?

Some places advertise extremely cheap barcodes. These barcodes may be legitimate, but are often not. The companies are usually difficult to contact, and cannot provide robust proof that the numbers come from a legitimate source. While you may save some money upfront buying these numbers, it doesn’t compare to the amount you will have to spend should a reprint be necessary due to illegitimate barcodes.

Our numbers are from a legitimate source, recommended by George Laurer (inventor of the barcode). The also checked for illegal use before sale to ensure you don’t have any legal hassles, More information on the advantages of our barcodes can be found here.


“Thanks for getting this over to me so quickly.  I’m just going to check that this all works OK then hopefully I’ll be needing a few more in a couple of weeks.” Richard R

“Thanks for your prompt service. Appreciate it.” Tom J

“Thank you for the speedy return of the barcodes.” Jenefer L