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USPS Informed Delivery Not Working: What To Do

USPS Informed Delivery is a service offered to residential addresses that allows you to have access to all your incoming mail before you receive it. While this is fantastic, like everything in life, it can sometimes prove faulty.

 

As you may well know, this can be pretty frustrating for people who rely on this service. Luckily, we have some reasons why informed delivery is down and what you can do to fix it.

 

Informed delivery on mobile phone

 

USPS Informed Delivery Common Problems And How to Fix Them

 

Problems with mail are tricky to deal with since you probably have something important (or exciting) on the way. Although patience is key with all snail mail services, there are some things you can do to fix common problems with Informed Delivery.

 

Informed delivery on a desktop and mobile device

 

USPS Informed Delivery Missing Mail

 

Sometimes, you may find yourself in a puzzling situation where you have received a notification about your mail piece, but it has not yet arrived in your mailbox.

 

Unfortunately, you might have to practice patience with this one since USPS Informed Delivery sends alerts for letters and packages that are arriving shortly, not necessarily on the same day. So, you should wait up to a week after you’ve received the notification to allow time for delivery.

 

However, in some circumstances, this won’t be the case.

 

Your mail could have been scanned automatically by machinery, but your actual letter might not have been passed on to your mail carrier before they left for their delivery round.

 

Moreover, if you have paid for a slower shipping procedure, you should expect to wait a little longer for your letter.

 

Finally, if your mail piece falls into a category like Certified Mail, you won’t receive it until certain actions have been completed (like obtaining your signature, for example).

 

Person looking into an empty mailbox

 

No Images On Informed Delivery

 

One of the most common informed delivery problems is that no image of the mail piece can be seen on your account.

 

If your mail piece is larger than the standard size of an envelope, then you will not receive an image of it. Why? USPS Informed Delivery simply doesn’t offer the image service for large mail pieces at this time (unfortunate, but true). Although, it’s not all bad! Your daily notification will come with a message saying alerting you to the fact that there is no image for the larger pieces of mail.

 

However, if you are someone who receives a lot of postcards, USPS Informed Delivery service may not be for you. They don’t tend to snap pictures of both sides. So, you will only get to view the part with the bar code on your online portal.

 

picture that says "no image available" for informed delivery

 

No Email Notifications

 

If you aren’t receiving email notifications from Informed Delivery, there may be a really simple explanation for this: you’ve changed your email address and forgotten to update it.

 

To update your address you need to follow these steps:

 

  1. Go to your usps.com profile.
  2. Input your new email address.
  3. Make sure to save the changes.

 

After this, you should find that the alerts are getting to you promptly, without a hitch.

 

Remember that you can only have one email address per account. So, if your partner or other household member has changed your profile address so they can receive information about their mail, your one will have been deleted. Just ask them to make their own account, change your address back and everything will be hunky-dory!

 

Email icon with a blue exclamation mark

 

Address Not Eligible For Informed Delivery

 

Unfortunately, there are still addresses that are not eligible for Informed Delivery. To figure out whether your location is covered, you can make use of their ZIP code lookup tool.

 

Airplane view of a neighborhood

 

Mis-delivered Mail

 

For mailpieces that have a correct address, proper postage and no forwarding address, the United States Postal Service will deliver the item no matter what. So, if you’ve recently moved house and receiving the previous tenant’s mail, they have not updated their information.

 

It’s quite easy to return it. You can leave it in a USPS Collection Box or another post box with a note saying “not at this address” on the envelope. Make sure you scribble over the barcode too!

 

Location on a map on smart phone device

 

How to Stop USPS Informed Delivery

 

If these problems are making it impossible for you to enjoy the benefits of USPS Informed Delivery, you are able to cancel it.

 

To do this, you will need the unsubscribe code that is situated on your welcome kit. Then, just go to the USPS website and enter it. They will ask you to submit a reason for unsubscribing. You can choose from:

 

  • My identity has been stolen
  • I don’t recognize the account
  • I don’t want the service
  • Other

 

When picking from the above, we recommend choosing “I don’t want the service” or “other” if you’re leaving due to problems with Informed Delivery.

 

An image with text saying "no more"

 

A More Reliable Alternative

 

For those of you who are fed up with the USPS Informed Delivery service, US Global Mail is extremely proud to offer a reliable alternative.

 

This virtual mailbox will bring a futuristic feel to your mail service and provide you with a super simple way to manage your letters and packages.

 

With US Global Mail, you will receive images of your letter-sized mail and your parcels! Based on the pictures, you can then decide whether our expert mail people should shred, ship or deposit your letters and parcels. Our virtual mailbox gives you complete control over your post.

 

Virtual mailbox on a computer & smartphone device

 

We only employ the best of the best when it comes to our mail pickers so you can relax knowing that all of your letters and packages are in safe hands. But don’t just take our word for it, our happy customers speak the truth!

 

Owning a virtual mailbox with US Global Mail will bring you a worry-free postal experience. It is easy to sign up and simple to use. Snail mail doesn’t need to be a hard, stressful, worrisome act!

 

Why wait for reliability? Why wait for convenience? Why wait for futuristic mail handling? Get your virtual mailbox right here, right now.

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How To Stop Junk Mail

Junk mail makes up over 80% of the mail you receive. Yet, you never read through it and more often than not, ends up in a trace can (at worst) or your recycling bin (at best.)

 

Dealing with junk mail is more than just about frustration; because of our regard to it being spam, it causes tons of paper going to waste (and therefore millions of trees being cut down for no good reason.)

 

empty forest with cut down trees

 

How To Get Rid Of Junk Mail

 

There’s nothing worse than opening up your mailbox to find it overstuffed with nothing but junk mail – credit card offers, insurance discounts eat, catalogs from companies you have never heard of and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

 

Unfortunately, having to deal with junk mail is a cold reality of our modern world.

 

Each and every year, hundreds of millions of pieces of mail are sent through the USPS unsolicited by their recipients – almost all of it completely unwanted, too.

 

In fact, according to researchers at EcoCycle.org (one of the largest nonprofit recycling operations in the United States) the average person in the US is going to spend eight months of their life just sorting and disposing of junk mail.

 

How To Stop Junk Mail 1

 

Think about that for second.

 

That research says that we’ll spend almost the same amount of time dealing with junk mail that woman will spend pregnant with the child. Craziness.

 

On top of that, the New York University School of Law recently published research highlighting the fact that 5.6 million tons of junk mail ends up in US landfills every year, that 44% of all junk mail is tossed without ever being opened, and that only about half of all junk mail gets reused or recycled after it is disposed of.

 

Worse, the average American gets 848 pieces of junk mail every year, almost 3 pieces of junk mail every day. That’s enough paper to eliminate 1.5 trees annually (and 100 million trees in the US alone every year) – causing more greenhouse gases than nearly 4 million cars along the way.

 

Thankfully though, there are more things you can do today to opt out of junk mail – with or without the help of the USPS.

 

Below we dig a little deeper into a couple of approaches you can take to stop junk mail USPS employees aren’t at all shy about sharing with the general public as well as a couple of tips and tricks you might not have heard about before.

 

By the time you are done with this quick guide you’ll be able to eliminate 90% or more of all the junk mail you’ve been getting, cleaning up and decluttering your mailbox almost overnight.

 

Let’s dive right in!

 

Junk mail piled up

 

Best Way To Get Rid Of Junk Mail

 

One of the most important things you can do right now – this very minute – to stop receiving unwanted and unwelcome marketing and advertising messages through the mail is to get off of commercial mailing lists ASAP.

 

Now, this can be a little bit easier said than done simply because there are so many mailing lists out there. We are talking literally thousands and thousands of commercial lists being sold and rented to businesses every day, with your name, address, and contact information attached.

 

Getting your contact details scrubbed from these lists is a bit more involved than using the FTC’s National Do Not Call Registry but it is still something you should be able to knockout in an afternoon.

 

A sign that says "no junk mail"

 

DirectMail.com operates their own National Do Not Mail List that you can join 100% free of charge just by filling out a quick email form and sending it in.

 

This company is run by direct marketers that own and operate a lot of the most popular commercial lists, so by submitting your name to this organization your scrubbing your details the most popular lists out there.

 

You’ll be able to cut down on the amount of mailbox spam you get almost immediately with this approach.

 

Junk mail letters piling up

 

Call OPT-OUT Today to Slow Down Unwanted Offers

 

Another quick tip you want to use to eliminate a lot of the USPS junk mail you would have otherwise received is to call the OPT–OUT outline directly and request that you be taken off of their lists as well.

 

Anyone that has ever purchased a home or vehicle, used their personal information to sign up for a credit card, have filled out a product warranty card, or submitted their details to a business for a credit check inevitably end up on pre-offer lists.

 

This is why you are constantly bombarded with a lot of credit card and insurance offers, multiple offers coming in every month or even every week – even from the same companies that are just trying to hammer you with marketing until you eventually signed up.

 

By contacting OPT-OUT via their toll-free number 1-888-567-8688 you’ll be able to request either a five-year removal from these lists for a permanent removal that guarantees you won’t have to worry about receiving these kinds of offers ever again.

 

You also have the chance to request to be placed on the “in-house” list from this company only, guaranteeing that you only ever receive offers from companies that you already do business with.

 

You’ll get offers from your current credit card company, home or car lender, or the insurance business that you are working with as opposed to being overloaded with offers from anyone and everyone in these industries.

 

Warehouse processing & getting rid of paper

 

Spend $2 to Dump Junk Mail for a Decade

 

This approach is going to require you to pony up a little bit of spare change to stop junk mail from coming in, but it’s going to detox your mailbox for at least a decade.

 

The Data ; Marketing Association (DMA) is one of the largest list brokers and junk mailers on the planet, responsible for helping companies all over the world mail hundreds of millions of pieces each and every year.

 

For the price of just two dollars (so long as you register your contact information online) you’ll be able to stop the DMA from selling your information for 10 years – guaranteeing that your details aren’t going out on lists to companies that are built entirely on junk mail.

 

You also have the chance to register your details through the mail, though you’ll have to spend three dollars with this approach, but you’ll get the same 10 years of protection from DMA.

 

Road sign that says "marketing strategy"

 

 

Prevent Marketers From Sharing Your Information

 

Whenever you sign up for a product, subscribe to a service or provide any information on your location of residence you are most likely being added into a mailing list. That list gets used over and over again, either from the company you signed up with or through 3rd party companies that have purchased or rented a mailing list with your name & address on it. In order to reduce the amount of exposure and the re-use of your information, you can write them a note requesting that. Something in the lines of “Please do not use my mailing information, or add me to any mailing list.”

 

 

Sign that says "spam"

 

Cancel The Subscription To Any Catalogs

 

If you are receiving unwanted catalogs, spend an evening getting the names of the most frequent spam mailers, and reach out to the catalog company directly. You can request to be removed from their mailing list. Make sure to keep note of your mailing label and reference it either in your conversation over the phone or tape it to the postcard you send in with the request. This will help the company identify how you are listed in their files.

 

woman talking on the phone

 

Do It Yourself Manually

 

This one is very similar to what we discussed earlier, but a bit more labor intensive. Typically, a mailer will have a phone number at the bottom of it which is dedicated to answering calls requesting an address is removed from the list. By doing so, you can greatly reduce the amount of credit card offers, magazines, catalogs, donation requests etc. If you are looking for a more automated way to get rid of junk mail, try using the Paper Karma app; this lets you take a photo of the unwanted mailing with your phone and then works on your behalf to get you un-subscribed.

 

junk mail in a mailbox

 

Avoid Mail Intended for previous residents

 

When you decide to move to a new home, most likely you will get mailings that belong to the earlier resident of the home. Eventually you can expect the volume of such mail to slow down a bit, but initially; it can be a bit overwhelming. Unfortunately, not everyone is great about completing their change of address with the USPS.

 

Whatever you do, please do not get rid of that mail that comes in. Not only will this not help with your mailing issues, but it is also illegal. What we would recommend you do instead, is cross out all the bar codes in order to avoid an automatic sorting, and write “Return to sender: Recipient moved”. This will send the mail item back to the post office and eventually back to the original sender. This way the sender will “get the message” and stop sending you mail in the future.

 

If you see things getting out of hand, you may want to consider completing a change of address form for the previous occupant with “Left No Forwarding Address” in place of the new residence.

 

transaction made between a customer and a business

 

Switch Bill Payments & Newspaper subscriptions to Online Delivery

 

Many times, the junk mail we get, comes from magazines that we actually have subscribed for (willingly or unwillingly.) That means that not only is your address the target of mailing agencies, but you have endorsed this by subscribing to their list. In many cases, you need this unecessary junk mail coming in, but yet it still causes issues with the amount of mail you end up getting.

 

The remedy? Online bill payment and magazine delivery.  If you want to switch your magazines to a digital subscription format, most likely you will just need to download an app. From within the app, you will be able to verify your subscription; just enter the address and subscription number and you’re good to go. Once this step is completed, visit the website and cancel from physical mail deliveries of that specific magazine. Instead, you will be able to get upcoming and prior publications electronically. If you do not see that option, reach out to the support team for the particular magazine, as you may have not signed up for the digital version; they should be able to change your subscription from physical mail delivery to digital.

 

You Can’t Block All Junk Mail

 

Unfortunately, although there are several steps you can take (whether personally or by using a 3rd party service,) to reduce the amount of junk mail you receive, you cannot completely block all incoming mail. That is due to the fact that your address has most likely been shared with a large network of marketing agencies, who will keep recycling your address and keep adding you onto endless mailing lists. The less you have used your address during checkout processes and the less subscriptions you have signed up for, the less your address is shared around the different direct mail agencies. Unfortunately, it’s a problem that can be controlled & reduced but not eradicated.

 

Virtual mailbox on desktop & mobile

 

US Global Mail Eliminates Junk Mail From Your Life Forever

 

Of course, if you want to guarantee that you never have to see junk mail again for as long as you live – without having to jump through any hoops, without having to deal with any headache or hassle, and without having to do any of the steps we outlined above – you’ll want to register for a virtual mailbox with US Global Mail.

 

The fastest, easiest, and most consistent way to eliminate junk mail permanently, on account with US Global Mail not only stops spam and junk mail from ever hitting your mailbox but it also provides a whole host of other benefits you won’t get with the traditional USPS mail service.

 

For more information and details, check out US Global Mail today!

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Can You Get Coronavirus From A Package or Mail?

Coronavirus…

 

Who would have expected such a “little” virus to bring down entire economies and global world powers?

It is by far the most discussed topic on dinner tables and in virtual corporate meetings. The world is going through some unprecedented times to say the least. And contrary to the initial idea of this having the severity of the common flu, it is now evident that the virus that causes Covid-19, is at least 10X more lethal than the typical flu, and many times more contagious.

 

One of the most interesting facts of Covid-19, is that the virus can potentially stay on surfaces for a very long time (hours and in some cases, even days) allowing it to spread at a very fast pace. Additionally, symptoms do not start appearing up to 10-14 days, making quarantine & restrictive measures very ineffective.

 

Coronavirus particle

 

Due to such unique characteristics of the virus, a very legitimate & reasonable question has been raised with regard to the ability of the virus to spread through the mail. After all, if the virus can remain on paper surfaces for up to 24 hours, why wouldn’t mail be the ideal “vehicle” the virus would use to get to the rest of us? 

 

There are several reasons:

 

Timeline

 

When you consider the amount of time it takes for a package to be shipped or mail to be delivered, that in and of itself would far surpass the typical lifespan of the virus. It is a well known fact that it takes 2-3 business days for USPS mail to be delivered to its final destination. So even with a virus being capable of staying on packages for up to 24 hours, that would still mean that it ultimately dies off. 

 

USPS truck

 

Host Requirement

 

This is not a medical journal, but understanding how Coronavirus functions and its requirements to live will help understand why mail is not capable of spreading the virus. It is a known fact of biology, that in order for any virus to survive for an extensive period of time, it requires a host it can live in. The only way a virus can be eliminated once it enters a host, is through the immune system of the patient or if the patient passes away. In other words, without there being a host that the virus can be a part of, it has no chances of surviving for more than just a few hours (or at most, a few days.)

 

Virus depiction in a host

 

Droplet Spread

 

The easiest way for any virus to spread is through the tiny droplets that are sprayed into the air when someone coughs or sneezes. That means that unless someone sneezes on the mail you are about to receive, you are probably safe. Not only that, but it would also need to be delivered in under 24 hours, which like we said, is impossible. Another thing to consider, is the fact that when a piece of mail is sent, it is placed into a tightly sealed envelope. Such environmental circumstances would not allow for a virus to live for more than just a few hours. 

 

To add to this point, the theory of the virus spreading through hard surfaces (and staying alive for a few hours or even up to a few days,) has no real scientific backing. According to the New York Times, a good majority of the scientific community does not believe that you can catch the coronavirus by touching a surface that has the virus on it and subsequently touching your own mouth or nose. Additionally, the German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (the German version of our very own F.D.A.) advises that although there is a certain small risk to catching the coronavirus from hard surfaces, there have been no known cases in which individuals have caught the coronavirus by touching a contaminated surface and then transferring the virus to their mouth or nose. It’s worth noting however that transmissions has always been known as a tough subject to study with any kind of “absolutes”

 

Virtual mailbox

 

Coronavirus Surviving on Surfaces

 

Not having any absolutes works both ways: there is no guarantee that the Coronavirus spreads through hard surfaces, but there is also no guarantee that it can not spread through such surfaces.

 

Recently, there was a paper published in the New England Journal of Medicine that helped shed more light on the matter. Researchers from NIA, the CDC, Princeton University and the University of California misted certain virus particles into a rotating drum and studied how long the particles would survive on different surfaces. What was discovered was that the SARS-CoV-2 virus survived on cardboard surfaces for up to 24 hours. The conclusion being that the virus could probably not survive for days, but could definitely survive a few hours on mail. 

 

Surgeon general Dr. Jerome M. Adams, the CDC & WHO, all have “indicated that there is currently no evidence that COVID-19 is being spread through the mail.”

 

Employee disinfecting hard surface

 

Point Of Mail Contamination

 

As mentioned several times already, from the time a package or piece of mail is sent out, until the time it reaches its final destination, there will have been at least 2-3 days that pass by. What that means is, it’s very unlikely that someone who has the Coronavirus would be able to transfer it to a friend or relative to whom he/she is sending that letter to. 

 

One thing to consider however is the point at which someone infected with the virus, touches the mail. Think of the chain of events that take place for a piece of mail to reach from point A to point B. Initially, mail is placed in your mailbox and from there delivered onto a USPS truck. Ultimately, it reaches a USPS distribution point where federal employees will sort through all the packages and mail. 

 

At some point, mail will be loaded up onto a USPS truck and will be delivered by the mailman from home to home. Which leads us to the question: what if you do not have the Coronavirus, but the mailman that delivers it does? What if the surface touched on the mailbox is then touched by the resident with a subsequent touch to their face?

 

I think the point is pretty clear: mail itself cannot transfer the Coronavirus from zip code to zip code. But hard surfaces could potentially. And depending on who is infected (whether the sender or the mailman,) potentially there is a risk that you could catch the coronavirus via snail mail. Is it likely that is going to happen? No.. 

 

In fact there have been over 1 Million cases of coronavirus worldwide at the day of writing this blog, and no reported cases of someone getting ill due to a piece of mail that contained the Coronavirus on it. 

 

Mail being delivered with the USPS

 

A Virtual Mailbox Solution

 

One of the best ways to receive mail safely & avoid coming in contact with contaminated packages or the mailman, is through the use of a virtual mailbox. 

 

One of the added perks that comes with that, is that you can get all packages (this includes prescription medication,) for up to 80% off of shipping.

 

What Is A Virtual Mailbox

 

A virtual mailbox is an online mailbox (think Gmail) where you can view all your USPS snail mail. All letters that come in are scanned and uploaded into your account. This ensures you do not come in contact with the mail or the mailman.

 

If there is a package that arrives, you can request we ship it to you with up to 80% off what you would normally pay for shipping.

 

Here’s what it looks like on your computer or smart phone:

 

Virtual mailbox on desktop & mobile devices

 

US Global Mail, will offer their virtual mailbox, 2 months free, to anyone over 50 years of age or with underlying health conditions.

 

This will ensure you get the Covid-19 stimulus check and all prescription medication, without needing to come in contact with other people.

 

To get the free virtual mailbox, click here & use coupon code “fightingtogether” at checkout.

 

(This offer will last until the end of the month.)

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USPS Package Forwarded – What Now?

Getting mail from the Post Office is a great feeling. Some would go as far to say that it resembles childhood anticipation on Christmas, to open up the gifts under the tree.

 

But, as “on time” as Santa Claus is, the USPS has a bit more to deal with than just a family of reindeer. Indeed, when you input your tracking code, you might see a note saying: forwarded, or forwarded for delivery.

 

Santa Claus reading mail

What Does Forwarded For Delivery Mean? 

 

This means that the package you were waiting for, has been sent to a new address. It will come up as a notification when you input your tracking code in the USPS website. 

 

If this confused you even more, it’s probably a good idea to answer first what forwarding USPS mail is all about.

 

Whenever someone decides to move to a new address, instead of having to notify all senders they ever got mail from, of the new address, they will simply want to complete a change of address request with the USPS. This will allow for an automatic mail forwarding system to be put into place, where all packages are sent to your new location instead of your former address.

 

Tracking a package online

 

There are three types of forwarding services offered by the USPS depending on the duration of this forwarding process. You have:

 

  • Permanent change of address. This is a permanent change of address. You have decided to move and are not looking to move back nor is this some short term stay. In order to complete this address change request, you will want to visit the official change of address part of the USPS website. You will immediately get an e-mail confirming the change that you completed online.There will be a $1.05 charge to change your address online. To complete that transaction you will need a valid credit or debit card as well as an e-mail address. Note that this charge is not them receiving compensation for the processing of your application, but rather just an identity verification to ensure they prevent fraud and that you are really the individual completing the change.If you look up “change of address” online, you will probably come across several third party private companies that try and help you complete the change of address, for a fee. You can totally disregard those as the change of address needs to take place officially from USPS, and completing such a request is a really easy process.

 

  • Temporary change of address. As the term suggests, this is a more temporary mail forwarding application, that will allow for mail to be forwarded to another location from 15 days to 6 months. If you enter in the USPS calendar the date on which you would like to have them start forwarding mail to your new address, make sure to list a date that is not 30 days older than today and up to 3 months into the future. From the minute you complete the change of address, mail should arrive at your new address within 7 business days of either your move effective date or your file date.

 

On the USPS website, you will be asked to submit information around your current address. If your address happens to be a PO Box, make sure that you enter it in the Street address field. Remember that you cannot submit change of address requests for non USPS private mailboxes.

 

After completing the information surrounding your current address, you will be asked to fill out information about your new address you are moving to. Make sure to enter a valid address and remember that you cannot request a change of address for PMB’s.

 

  • Premium Forwarding Service. This one is a premium feature of the USPS where they hold your mail and ship it weekly to you using priority mail services. The advantage of a premium forwarding services (over your non premium options) is the flexibility and control you get with respect to when and where you receive mail. For example you may want to change the forwarding location while you relocate or you may want to get all business mail in a particular address. A premium forwarding service will grant you that flexibility for a one time fee and a weekly shipment fee.

 

USPS worker delivering mail

To read through a full breakdown & further details of each service, click here.

 

Why Was Your USPS Item Forwarded To A Different Address?

 

If the USPS sent mail to the wrong address, usually this is either due to a wrong postal code, or a recent change of address with the USPS.

 

  • You put the wrong address on your USPS package. This is by far the most common mistake people make. Think of all the common street names that exist throughout the United States and the possibility of changing just a few numbers, and having your package sent across the other side of the country. Always double check the address that has been added to the package prior to ordering it. Also make sure to make your handwriting clear for the mailman to make out the address listed on the envelope. This will help you avoid having the package delivered to the wrong address.

 

  • You recently completed a change of address. To understand this, you first need to understand how USPS change of address works. If you do not recall having completed a change of address, you will want to double check with your family members in case there was a request made. If you do recall and that happened while you were in the process of moving, just be patient; it will soon be forwarded from your old address to your new one. And just in case, you can always give the Post Office a call to double check that everything is alright. Just make sure to have your tracking number with you, when referencing the case.

 

Man in green shirt scratching his head

 

What Happens If A Package Is Delivered To The Wrong Address?

 

You will have to wait for the person that received the package to report the error on their end. If they decided to reach out to the USPS, then the post office will go and pick it up for you. You will find it in the Mail Recovery Center, in the lost and found department.

 

Most frequent issues come up with people listing the wrong zip code on their envelope, as a result having the package going to the wrong address. That in return just causes a series of communication hurdles between you, the USPS and the random stranger you decided to send this “Christmas present” to. 

 

It all boils down to how honest the other recipient of your mail is, in claiming arrival of your package. In that case, the USPS will easily be able to schedule a pickup in order to be able to get your package back. But in the case where the recipient claims to have not received any package (yet you are convinced it got there & the tracking number suggests that,) then you will need to both (you & stranger) open up a lost package case. 

 

An extensive process will follow through with a series of reviews that will take up more time you can imagine. So it will probably be best to make sure that you do not make this zip code mistake, in the first place. 

 

Missing piece of a puzzle

 

A Better Alternative For Mail Forwarding

 

Considering the admittedly bureaucratic nature of mail forwarding completed with the USPS, several services have designed a mail forwarding solution that goes above & beyond what you would get from good o’l Uncle Sam’s Postal Service. 

 

That is a digital view of all incoming mail, before it is even forwarded to your location. Think of it as Gmail containing all your snail mail and you being able to select what items you want specifically forwarded to you while keeping everything else digitally stored. Not only do you get to receive all mail digitally, but you also have unlimited storage space for up to 6 months. Which means you can kind of “leave it & forget it” without needing to check it every week (like you normally would with a physical mailbox or else it overflows.)

 

Virtual mailboxes also tend to be cheaper than a typical PO box. That is because since everything is stored online, you are not footed the leasing expenses a post office facility would have. So your monthly plan ends up being a lot less.

 

Several other advantages of having mail forwarding done digitally, is that considering you handle it online it takes away from all the paper mess, loss of envelopes & chaotic storage and keeping track of all your snail mail. Additionally, there are some features (such as check deposit or mail shredding) that will allow you to remotely deposit a bank check without needing to visit a bank and shred any mail that contains sensitive information.

 

More & more people have been flocking to such alternative mail forwarding solutions, considering that they can label the files online (just like Gmail,) and even store them to your Dropbox or Google Drive for future reference. As an example of where this would be applicable, say you need to reference your tax notices from last year’s third quarter, you can easily do so; just sort by date or label and you’re good to go. 

 

A virtual mailbox on smart phone & desktop

 

In Summary

 

There is no alternative to submitting your address properly the first time. Doing so will help you save a lot of time and money. 

 

If you are looking for something digital & more streamlined, you may want to consider the use of mail forwarding with a virtual mailbox. Digitizing your mail can be the best decision you’ve made yet, in staying on top of a ton of paper. 

 

For any questions, you can contact us here. 

 

Or visit US Global Mail.

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Does A Virtual Address Matter in 2020?

When everything turns digital, one thing seems to not turn digital at all: business addresses & residences. Or do they?

 

In this blog, we will be discussing the importance of using a virtual address for business or for personal use. There are certain pros & cons you need to be aware of and understanding what your options are along with associated costs, will be important in your consideration of acquiring a virtual address. 

 

Person checking snail mail on a tablet

 

What Is A Virtual Address

 

A virtual address is a physical address in a remote location, used as your own mailing address.

 

For example, let’s say you live in the suburbs of NYC but want to showcase your business being located downtown on Main Street. You would be selecting from a list of virtual business addresses located downtown NYC which could be used for your business registration, receiving & managing mail from your virtual mailbox that comes with it, and displaying that address on your business cards & website. 

 

Another example (in the case of residential virtual addresses,) would be that you are located in Cleveland, Ohio and are about to move overseas for an extended period of time. That means there will be no one back home to pick up your mail, and you would still need to access your mail some way while overseas. Using a virtual address physically located in your former home town, will allow you to access all needed documents & snail mail from your smartphone or desktop device, through your virtual mailbox. An easy way to think of it, is “snail mail that looks like e-mail.” 

 

All your documents will be scanned & uploaded into your virtual mailbox. From there you can decide to have the content of your envelope opened up & scanned, you can have it shredded (in the case of sensitive information such as bank statements or social security numbers,) and you can even have the real physical copy shipped to your location at up to 80% off of typical shipping rates.

 

Virtual mailbox on a mobile device

Is A Virtual Address Important In 2020?

 

As with anything in life; it depends. 

 

Here are some cases where using a virtual address will come in handy for you:

 

 

Virtual Address For Business

 

Sure, you can always use your home address as your business address, but there are a couple reasons you would want to avoid that. For starters, using your home address for business is probably not the most professional thing you can do. An easy Google search will be a quick way for people to tell that you are operating your business out of your home. And even though you may be able to do some from an operations perspective, it still looks a bit “cheap” and you won’t a good first impressions from potential customers.

Another more important reason for not using your home address as a business address however, is the fact that it’s in public display online. Whether on Google or online directories, everyone now (well or ill intentioned) knows precisely where it is you & your family live. So if you have  grumpy customer or someone that is straight out an ill intentioned person (or criminal,) you are exposing the rest of your family to the dangers of them walking up to your doorstep and harming you and loved ones.

Alongside this, you need to protect all the important documents your business will receive. You can’t do this with a home address. You need a virtual address for proper security. Otherwise your legal contracts, licenses, permits, correspondence with suppliers, vendor contacts, statements, payments, bills, invoices, and contact information could fall into the wrong hands. Remember, your 4-year-old tot counts as the wrong hands! You never know, you might come home to your taxes covered in purple crayon and apple juice. That wouldn’t look so good, would it?

 

Plus, you get immediate access to your mail with a virtual box. Regardless of the device you use — smartphone, tablet, laptop, desktop, you name I — you can access your mail as soon as it comes in. It doesn’t matter where you are; you just need your login details and your received mail pops up. This can be fantastic if you’re awaiting that all-important order your business needs or you are currently talking to vendors about potential contracts. Things like that can’t wait for you to get back from your travels.

 

Finally, a digital mailbox presents a paperless, seamless document management solution. You can set up it to automatically perform functions that you would otherwise have to make time for — think getting rid of junk mail and shredding certain items. You will never fall short with record-keeping ever again. Imagine that!

 

Person standing in front of a business plan on a white board

 

Going abroad

 

One thing Americans are known for, is travel. Whether for leisure or professional reasons, there are millions of Americans that have moved overseas on a more permanent or temporary basis. They did not turn in their passports necessarily, but rather they have decided to be overseas for a little while. Certain US obligations still follow you however. The simplest thing that comes to mind, are IRS notices & US taxes. These will only come in via the mail. So being able to stay on top of these, will help you avoid fines & being able to pay your taxes or penalties in time. Additionally, other important documents or information will be sent to you; if you are retired, your social security check also comes through the mail. So getting it delivered to you, while overseas can be a very important reason to register a virtual address. Check out what a check deposit is and how it could be a great convenience in getting your bank checks deposited quickly. 

 

You want a virtual solution.

 

When you consider the amount of time we spend in our vehicles every day, it is staggering and adds up to months or years over a lifetime. Why drive to the Post Office, just to stay in line to open an empty mailbox or one stuffed with junk mail? Many people are turning to virtual solutions, considering the ease of accessing all mail from your phone. You simply log into your account the same you would with Gmail, and check all snail mail online. It’s as easy as that!

 

You are a frequent traveler

 

Many people need to move every quarter, either because their job requires that (i.e travelling nurse) or because someone has decided to become a full time RV’er. That means that every single quarter, you would need to complete a change of address with the USPS. Although I am sure some people have the time to do that, it’s probably easy to understand what a hassle that can be and how unreliable considering the flexibility required to align with your schedule.

 

Registering a virtual address, means that you get to have a permanent US address, that follows you wherever you go. Just pick a city, complete your change of address and 1583 form, and you’re good to go. No more hassles, and access all paper mail online!

 

For all you digital nomads out there, the benefits of a virtual mailbox solution don’t stop here.

 

With a virtual address, you are guaranteed the utmost security. The mail handlers who work at the facilities are incredibly well-trained and have nothing but the safety of your personal information and mail in mind. The data is encrypted and uploaded to your dashboard so nobody could even dream of hacking it. Plus, any packages you may receive while you are globetrotting are professionally handled and kept in secure, remote locations.

 

Additionally, depositing checks is now a breeze. Yep, regardless of what currency! When you get a paycheck, your virtual mailbox service will send you a notification. Then, you can use the app to deposit it to any bank in the United States of America. This way, the money will appear in your account as quickly as possible. You shouldn’t have to wait for your money when there are so many experiences to be had out there!

 

At an airport about to board a plane

You Are an Expat Looking for Seamless Solutions

 

While moving to another country is super exciting and you’ll be pouring your heart and soul into making a life for yourself there, you still have to manage your life back home. You will still need a permanent address in the United States of America. Why? To ensure you acquire all the necessary correspondences, receive packages, and shop securely — all without the risk of your mail getting lost.

 

A virtual mailbox allows you to relax with the knowledge that your parcels, packages, letters, and business documents will get to you in one piece. There are tons of advantages for you, an expat, and a digital address.

 

For starters, you will be able to stay connected. A virtual mailbox ensures you have a permanent address, regardless of how many times you move around. It is incredibly simple to forward packages to your current residence from here. Plus, you can still shop at all your favorite US stores without having to worry about whether or not they will actually reach you.

 

Additionally, you can deposit checks (in any currency) easily, without visiting a bank. All you need to do is go on the app, hit deposit and you are well on your way to seeing your cash.

 

Oh, and you will never miss important documents. Since you will get instant access on any device to the contents of your mailbox, you don’t need to worry that you will miss payments, tax returns, invoices, and more. You can even set up notifications that will let you know when there is mail you need to check out.

 

The Benefits of a Virtual Address

 

If any of the above apply to you, you’ll know a lot about the benefits of a virtual address already. However, if you still feel like you are in the dark, let us walk you through the benefits, step-by-step.

 

1. Permanent Street Address

 

A virtual address is mostly globally accepted as a permanent, American street address, unlike a PO box. This saves a bunch of time because you won’t have to make your way to your physical mailbox every day (or week).

Plus, it will allow you to receive parcels from pretty much all couriers. For this reason alone, it’s a win-win kind of deal.

 

2. Deposit Checks Quickly

No more having to visit the bank when checks come in the mail. With a virtual address, you just have to go on the app, ask to have it deposited into your bank, and it’s done! This way, you get your money within one working day, rather than waiting 3 to 4! Not to mention that you can be in any country while this is happening.

3. Flawless Record Keeping

At the moment, you probably have a huge binder full of all your important, previously mailed documents, right? Well you can kiss goodbye to that with a virtual address. It allows you to store files for as long as you need. Whether that’s 5 seconds, days, weeks, months, or years — it can handle it all. This will save you a lot of space in your home too, so you’ll have more room for storing things that bring you joy.

4. Auto Admin

 

When the mail comes in, you can decide whether you want each piece shredded, held, or shipped to your current location. Everything can be done from within the app and takes a matter of seconds!

But that’s not all.

Thanks to new technology, the app allows you to search through the uploaded PDF scans of your mail. Again, this will save you time as you won’t have to trawl through everything you’re mailed. Instead, you can focus on your business, your significant other, and your family — you know, all the truly important things in life.

 

Documents being sent to a computer

The Bottom Line

 

Virtual addresses are not for everyone. But they can come in handy for quite a large percentage of the population. Usually, a business mailing address will also be cheaper than a typical PO Box, considering that all that mail is stored in the cloud (instead of a real physical location) making it cheaper for the end user.

 

Whether you have decided that you are about to launch a new business, want more privacy and the convenience of accessing all your mail virtually without needing to drive weekly to the post office, or simply because you’re about to relocate – having a virtual address can come in handy.

 

Talk with our award winning customer support team today, and see if a virtual address is right for you.

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What Is A Permanent Address

The 21st century has been indeed one of rapid digital transformation. The amount of time people spend online, is getting greater & greater, while shifting from traditional areas of attention such as the TV, spending time with friends, socializing in the “real” world etc.

 

This has led to a whole line of new businesses, that just cater to people online, as well as existing industries that have been disrupted & moved their services & offerings online.

 

Additionally, entire corporations are now banking off of the fact that we spend so much time on a computer & or mobile phone screen. Companies like Amazon, Ebay & Google, will keep us busy shopping online, instead of offline.

 

There is an interesting trend, that was especially noticeable after the crash of 2008, of businesses going online for the purpose of slashing expenses; indeed maintaining an office or building, is a lot more expensive than working out of your own home.

 

So in today’s article, we will be covering the topic of permanent addresses, and how these can be used for the registration of your business, helping you avoid many of the unnecessary expenses businesses had 20 years ago.

 

A residence with the street number 237

 

What Is A Permanent Address?

 

A permanent address is a physical street address that is under your name. Examples of permanent addresses would be a home or office address.

 

Such addresses can be transferred over & changed by completing a Change of Address form with the USPS.

 

Permanent VS Physical Address: What’s the Difference?

 

As you have just discovered, a permanent address is the physical street address which is under your name. Again, this could be your home or your office. You can use it for both personal and business needs. However, there are two address standards in the United States of America: permanent and physical.

 

A physical address is a valid street address which you can use for business and personal. However, it isn’t necessarily where you live (or work). Sometimes, it is referred to as a mailing address.

 

Unlike a PO box, it won’t have any restrictions. You will be able to receive unrestricted mail from all carriers such as UPS, FedEx, DHL, and more.

 

Even though it is generally business owners who use physical (or mailing) addresses, they are quite popular among travelers, students, and people in the military.

 

Employee on a computer analyzing data

Is A Permanent Address Required for Business?

 

Depending on the filling of your business, you would need a permanent address or a registered agent address. Such examples are LLC’s and LLPs. Having said that, you may well need a business address for your small company too. It all depends on what services or products you offer.

 

So, What Is a Registered Agent?

 

A registered agent is a person, agency, or other business who you appoint to be your “mail receiver”. In short, it ensures you never miss an important document (taxes, summonses, and more) ever again.

 

Examples of a registered agent would be the address for a business partner or your very own home address. The alternative to using your home address (and having it being in public display with the State and online,) is getting a regular office address out of which your business operates.

 

Due to the fact that office space generally costs more though, and not all businesses require that the business owner (or employees) be physically located there, startups will use a home address as a cheaper alternative.

 

A neighborhood with homes

 

Using A Home Address For Business

 

It is reasonable to want to preserve capital, at the launch of a business. For some people, it makes a lot of sense, using a home address in order to save on office expenses.

 

However, considering the affiliated risks that come with displaying publicly on the web, your family’s home as well as the solicitations you will get, you may want to re-think this.

 

Another reason you may want to avoid using a home address is due to the unprofessional look that it will give your business. Especially if you are just starting out and looking to make a good impression, showing people that you went the extra mile to setup your business properly and professionally, will pay off well in the future. Yes, it may cost you a bit more in the beginning, but it is definitely worth considering a registered agent as supposed to your house. After all, you wouldn’t want your kids getting hold of your taxes now, would you?

 

But there is a more practical reason why you should not use your home address, for business purposes. As you grow the business, you will notice that more pieces of mail will come through your mailbox and at some point, will create a chaotic paper mess for you and your family. Additionally, at some point you may decide to move to another residence. That can cause a serious disruption to the location your business is registered in, and potentially a lot of confusion for clients as well.

 

Black residential mailbox

Alternative Physical Address Ideas

 

So if getting office space is not in the books, and using your home address is not a safe or practical solution, what can you do to register a business? Keep in mind that a PO Box would not work as a physical address so you need some better alternatives than just that. Therefore, we’re going to discover how you can go about finding a business address that is not a PO box.

 

But since we are discussing permanent addresses (and not necessarily physical ones), here are 4 alternatives to a permanent address (which are definitely worth your money):

 

  1. PO Box Address: Using a PO Box will allow you to receive business mail as well as fulfill the address requirement for your business registration. Registering a business using a PO box is probably not the most professional way to go about it, but it is definitely a lot safer than using your home address.
  2. Pack and Ship mailbox: These are independent postal centers that will receive and process mail for you. Every neighborhood has them, and it’s a good way to register a new business. One potential hurdle could be that you are dependent tied down to lifetime of that business. So if for whatever reason the center goes out of business or relocates, you will be dealing with a change of address all over again.
  3. Virtual offices: We already discussed how your startup costs could go up with the lease of a real office space. However there is always the option of going virtual, and having a secretary answering your phone calls for you (and taking messages) as well as receiving your mail. Virtual offices are a cheaper alternative to a real office, but they’re still going to cost you a few hundred bucks per month.
  4. Virtual Mailbox: Think of this as “PO Box meets the Internet.” You get the perks of having an address that is distant from your home address, with the security you would expect from a postal service center, and rates that a Post Office store would give you. It is the ideal situation for any new business registration. There is an additional perk of viewing all mail online of course which should not be neglected. From the comfort of your own couch, using your phone you can access all snail mail online. From there, just click to scan, shred or mail forwarding an item.

 

How to Get Mail Without a Permanent Address

 

Of course, there is more to life than business needs. With that in mind, we need to talk about how to get personal mail with no permanent address.

 

Thankfully, it is possible. Whether you are a digital nomad, travelling for a living, or moving house without knowing where you’re actually going to end up, you can still receive letters, packages and parcels.

 

There are a few solutions that the United States Postal Service has devised that are fantastic options for you. Let’s get into the specifics.

 

Get a PO Box

 

Granted, this may not be that great for those that are travelling as you’d have to stay around the same area to access your mail. However, if you are planning to move to a location but don’t have an address yet, PO boxes are definitely the answer.

 

They tend to be located in the lobby of post offices so they are easy to access. In fact, some places offer extended opening hours for PO box owners (sometimes even around the clock access 7 days a week).

 

You won’t need to worry about security either as each box is locked by a code or key. Just bear in mind that there can be only one named key holder. So, you can’t have your partner’s name on the file too, unfortunately.

 

Snail mail entering a computer screen

General Delivery

 

If you are going to be staying in the same city for a decent length of time, or you know that you will be moving to that area shortly, you can use general delivery. Going with this option means your letters, parcels, and packages will be forwarded to one of the mail offices in the city.

 

Don’t stress, you won’t need to rush off there every time a piece of junk mail comes in. They will hold all your mail for 30 days. Bear in mind that you will need to pick it up in person and bring a valid, government accepted photo ID. This could be a driver’s license, student card, or military identification.

 

The great thing is that it doesn’t take long to set up when you need it. Although, if the city you’re in is quite big, the process will take longer. Why? Because you will need to call someone to figure out which post office to forward your items to.

 

Temporary Address Change

 

Of course, these options won’t suit everyone. So, you can simply ask a trusted friend or relative to collect your mail for you. Then, they can send it to your new address when you have figured everything out. Alternatively, you could save them a job and pick it up!

 

We mentioned earlier about the Change of Address forms. You will have to fill one of these out if you want to ensure your mail goes to your loved one. As we said, it’s easy to input all your information and submit it. Here’s how to do it:

 

  1. Go to the USPS website.
  2. Locate the Change of Address page.
  3. Click Temporary.
  4. Pay $1.05 so the online platform can verify your identity.
  5. Fill out all the information on the form.
  6. The United States Postal Service will send you a confirmation code. Make sure to keep this safe as you will need it if you want to cancel or adjust the information you provided.
  7. A welcome kit will turn up at your temporary address.
  8. All your mail will be sent here until you make a permanent change (or a different temporary one).

The Bottom Line

 

Using a permanent address does not necessarily mean that you need to put your home and family at risk. Distancing business from residence is good for so many reasons beyond security and privacy. Having control of business-related mail and keeping it separate from your individual mail will allow you to stay on top of things. It’s a pretty win-win situation, don’t you think?

 

There are several options available to you when it comes to using third party addresses to register a business. By far what we would highly recommend, is the consideration of the virtual mailbox, which gives you the advantage a PO box would give you, along with the convenience and ease that comes with a digital mailbox system.

 

Virtual mailboxes allow you to shred, scan, deposit, and ship your mail, all from within the app. Not to mention that our mail handlers are more than trained to give you a high-quality, secure experience. Trust us, it will feel like you’re living in the future!

 

US Global Mail is proud to be leading the way, in the virtual address world. With over 80,000 customers since 1999, our proven track record and success with handling your mail, has allowed us to continue with the same passion and dedication that we had 20 years ago. Just look at all the amazing customer feedback we have received over the years. We are proud to be backed by such brilliant people.

 

For any questions feel free to reach us here. We are always happy to relieve your concerns and queries you may have before you commit to our virtual mailbox.

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How To Stop Mail For Vacation

So you have had a busy last quarter and are ready to go off the grid for a while to some exotic vacation place…great! Maybe the Maldives, or the Seychelles, or perhaps the Bahamas? Or are you more of a jungle holiday goer? Or a year-long volunteer kind of affair? Wherever you go, you’re going to have loads of fun. But it isn’t quite that simple, is it? There is still that one question playing on your mind.

 

What happens with your USPS mail while you are away?

 

Well, we have good news for you because in this blog we will be showing you how to complete a mail hold with the post office.

 

Make some notes, read carefully and, at the end of the day, have a wonderful vacation!

 

Mailbox is overflowed with mail

How To Hold Your Mail in 3 Simple Steps:

 

    1. Head over to the Postal Service website and click on “Hold Mail” under “Track & Manage”
    2. Enter your mailing address
    3. Confirm whether “hold mail” is available for your location

     

    See, the good news is, the USPS has predicted that you won’t be at home 24/7 all days of the year. And even though you can get a pretty nice and large mailbox these days, the capacity is not exactly unlimited. There is nothing that screams more “I am away” than an overflowed mailbox. That in return will set you up for some unexpected visitors that are curious why you haven’t picked up your mail in such a long time.

     

    Once you have completed all necessary steps on the Postal Service website and receive confirmation of the eligibility of your location, you will want to enter the travel dates and select from one of two options:

     

    • Get mail delivered when you return home
    • Pick it up at the Post Office

     

    After that step is completed, you will receive a confirmation number that will be e-mailed to you within a few seconds. You will be given the option to edit your travel information and delivery options as well. That is where that confirmation number comes in handy.

 

Post office clerk handling mail from customer

In Person USPS Hold Request

 

If you are more traditional and find that completing a mail hold online is too complicated, don’t sweat it; there is an option of completing a hold request in person or over the phone.

 

To complete a hold request in person, you will want to visit your local post office branch and complete a 8076 form that will Authorize the Postal Service to hold your mail. That form will ask you similar information that the online form would ask (e.g address, calendar days you will be away, and an option to get mail delivered once you are back home, or an option to pick it up from the branch location).

 

Business person looking at this watch

USPS Hold Request by Phone

 

If you did not already know, the United States Postal Service has a toll-free customer service number. Along with ringing them for problems, queries, and requests, you can also start your hold mail delivery option from here too.

 

All you have to do is call 1-800-ASK-USPS (1-800-275-8777) and you will be connected with their customer service team. Do bear in mind that their opening hours are 8 in the morning to half 8 at night during the working week, and Saturday from 8 am until 6 in the evening. To be honest, we think this is amazing.

How Long Does It Take?

 

This is an excellent question, and depending on how far ahead you thought of this, the answer could delight you!

 

Once you have confirmed eligibility and are able to complete a hold mail request for your location, the post office can start the hold process within a day. Having said that, we would recommend all “to- be” travelers to complete a mail hold order at least 7 days prior to the day you leave. If you do happen to remember it last minute, then we would recommend you visit in person the local post office branch that is responsible for mail delivery to your address. This will ensure that you fill out the paper form properly and there are no mistakes that could delay your mail hold.

 

The inside of a post office building

How Long Will The Post Office Hold Mail?

 

The Post Office will hold your mail for up to 30 days. It is important to keep in mind that hold mail is not done for an infinite number of days, and if you exceed the 30 day period, they will forward your mail to a temporary address you listed when completing the form.

 

Depending on where you will be travelling to and how long you plan on being there, you can always select the option of receiving your mail at your new location. Of course there will be an additional fee associated with that, but it may be a good alternative if you need access to that mail urgently.

 

Virtual mailbox on a desktop & smart phone device

Stopping Mail Delivery: When Does It Resume?

 

You will be given the resume date (30 days from stopping your mail) when you apply for the US mail stop service so we can’t really give you a set in stone date or anything here. However, we do have some tips that will help you avoid any upsets on the day your post will continue.

 

The main thing is to be at home on this date. Don’t be at work or just arriving back after the holiday of a lifetime. Why? In all honesty, it is simply courteous to the mailman since your packet is probably far too large to fit inside your mailbox.

 

Depending on the area you live (be it an apartment block or the like) you would probably rather pick your held mail up in person. Well, we would suggest you do that anyway. This ensures you get your hands on all of it before someone else does.

 

If you do decide to pick it up yourself, make sure to bring a government approved identification document. You can take your driver’s license, non-driver’s ID card, federal or state-recognized tribal card, citizenship or naturalization certificate, armed forces card, uniformed services ID card, or permanent resident card.

 

What If You Want Your Mail Vacation Hold for More Than 30 Days?

 

Annoyingly, the post office will not hold your mail for more than 30 days. We understand this though as it would be quite challenging (not to mention a huge burden). But you do have an option here.

 

Instead of requesting the stop mail services, you can opt into the premium forwarding feature. With this, you get your mail sent to your temporary address every week. Of course, it comes with a price. Plus, it is more complicated than simply asking to cancel mail delivery but we will walk you through everything you need to know right now.

 

So, How Does It Work? And What Does It Actually Cost?

 

Step One: You need to make a United States Postal Service account. If you were thinking of using the hold US mail delivery service then you probably already have one of these.

 

Step Two: Enroll in the premium forwarding service using the USPS website. The form is easy and quick to fill out.

 

Step Three: If you are enrolling online like we are here, you will pay a fee of $17.10. However, the retail price is $18.65.

 

Step Four: You will pay $18.65 every week then to receive your mail.

 

Although that is the bare bones of it the service, there are some more details you need to know. Take a look below:

 

  • Your mail is packed up each Wednesday. You should receive your package within one to three business days thanks to the priority mail shipping you acquire as part of this service. However, it does depend on the distance.
  • Any priority mail express items will be automatically rerouted to your temporary address.
  • Priority mail items are either sent straight to you or are included in your weekly packet. It depends on which option will arrive sooner.
  • Any first class mail letters, packages, or parcels that don’t fit inside your packet each work will be sent separately. Thankfully, they don’t charge you any extra for this!

 

As you can tell, it is pretty useful if you are willing to pay the initial (and then recurring) fee.

 

How to Stop Mail: A Summary

 

Since we have been chatting now for quite a while, let us summarize everything we have discussed so it’s as easy as possible for you to put your mail delivery on hold.

 

In Person

 

  1. Go to your local post office branch.
  2. Ask for the form that will suspend mail delivery.
  3. Fill it in correctly. You can always ask if you need help or you’re unsure of what to write.
  4. Hand it into the employee behind the desk.
  5. Et voila! You’re all done and dusted.

 

Online

 

  1. Visit the United States Postal Service’s website (make sure it is the official one).
  2. Click “hold mail”.
  3. Fill in the form.
  4. And away you go!

 

By Phone

 

  1. Ring 1-800-ASK-USPS.
  2. Say that you need to file a request to “stop my mail”.
  3. And you are done!

 

And there you have it! You no longer have to scream “how do I stop my mail” into your mirror every morning before your vacation starts! Perfect.

 

Or is it? When you really think about it, there seem to be a lot of problems with this whole holding mail thing, doesn’t there? In fact, people have publicly announced their troubles with this surface. We’ve heard of everything going wrong including mailmen still delivering mail every day when the request was put in. This just isn’t on. Especially if you are on holiday for more than a long weekend!

 

So, is there another solution? Yup! Check it out.

A Better Alternative: The Virtual Mailbox

 

Time constraints and geographic limitations are not avoided when you complete a hold mail request with the USPS. Sometimes, you may find yourself needing to extend your overseas visit, or happen to travel to a place that is too far to consider direct mail forwarding from the US. In other cases, you may need access to important documents, while you are away.

 

The use of a Virtual Mailbox can come in handy in cases like this. You get to view all of your snail mail online, and even select from within your account one of the following options:

 

 

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to get in touch! We are always happy to resolve any concerns, queries or requests.

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How to Get a Mailbox with a Physical Address

Deciding to get a mailbox with a physical address is one of the smartest choices you can make. There are so many advantages (which we will get into in a moment). However, if you’ve never done it before, renting mailboxes can seem like quite a daunting, confusing task.

 

That’s why we are here to help you out.

 

But before we get into the specifics, we just want to make you aware of all the benefits getting UPS PO boxes (or whatever “rent an address for mail” service you choose to use) can bring you.

 

Ready to get into it? Let’s go!

 

The US flag on top of the globe

The Advantages of a PO Box With a Real Address

 

While there are more benefits than the 5 we are going to talk about, these are the main ones (in our humble opinion, of course).

 

Letter and Parcel Security

 

Since PO boxes and other UPS personal mailboxes are safely stowed within the post office, you won’t have any parcels or packages left on your doorstep. Ultimately, this alone ramps up the security and decreases the likelihood of your mail being swiped.

 

However, it runs deeper than this.

 

Even though the UPS mailbox rentals are inside an already super-safe environment, they are individually locked too. Sometimes, this will be via a code, but more commonly, it’s a key system. Just bear in mind that there is only one primary key holder per PO box. (Not that this should make much difference, to be honest)!

 

You Acquire a Permanent Mailing Address

 

Are you moving a lot? Are you flying your whole life overseas to start another life in a new country? Or are you living in an off the grid type of situation? Whatever it is, with a UPS mailbox address, you will have a stable place for friends, family, and companies to send you parcels, packages, and letters.

 

Keeps Your Home Address Private

 

It isn’t a great feeling when you think about how many businesses, customers (if you run a company), and people know your home address. You are putting trust in multiple locations when, in actual fact, you don’t know a quarter of them!

 

With a PO box, you can give registration forms and such this address so you don’t run the risk of having your privacy invaded by unprofessional, unethical fellows.

 

Quicker Mail Delivery

 

All UPS private mailboxes are already inside a postal facility. So, your parcels, packages, and letters will be delivered quicker than if you used your home or business address.

 

Great For Your Business

 

Business mailbox rentals are becoming increasingly popular too! Why? Because they’re cheaper than renting office space, some professionals don’t want their customers knowing they work from home, and clients can rest easy thanks to the company’s fixed, UPS business address.

 

Okay, we’re sure you were already convinced before you clicked on this so we’ll move along now!

 

UPS Store Mailbox

 

With a UPS personalized mailbox, you get so much bang for your buck. We’ll talk specific costs in just a moment but first, let’s have a gander at everything you’ll receive.

 

For starters, you will acquire a mailbox with a street address. Not only does this look more professional if you run a business, but it also won’t cause registration forms to glitch.

 

Plus, you can receive packages from all US mail carriers, not just the USPS. You don’t tend to find this with other private mailbox rentals. And, you can pick up your letters or parcels whenever you can! No really, we mean it. Regardless of the time, you can access your mail since UPS is open to their renters 24 hours a day.

 

Oh, and everything in the facility is managed, maintained, and guarded by UPS store certified experts. You will feel right at home when you walk in the door.

 

We think they are pretty great (if you hadn’t guessed).

 

How Much Does a Mailbox Cost?

 

It is quite hard to give you a hard and fast rule where UPS store PO box prices are concerned. Why? Because there isn’t a hard and fast rule! It all depends on where you live — the state and the city. Although, we can say that they usually range from $20 to $25.

 

PS: UPS mailbox prices run a lot cheaper than your traditional PO box, which only gives you a number and not a valid address.

 

A location pin on a map

Can I Use a PO Box as a Legal Address?

 

In short, no. You only get a number when you rent a PO box. However, acquiring a UPS street address and mailbox will allow you to use it as your legal address.

How to Rent a PO Box

 

If you’ve come this far, you’re serious about getting a PO box. You must be itching to know exactly how. Well, you’re in luck because we’re about to scratch that itch for you!

 

Step One: Location

 

You need to get a PO box somewhere that suits you. Whether that’s near your office or home, it doesn’t matter. Just know you’ll need to go there pretty much every week.

 

Step Two: Choose a Size

 

Typically, post offices will have boxes in the following sizes:

 

  • Extra small
  • Small
  • Medium
  • Large
  • Extra large

 

These all come with different price tags (naturally). Our advice is to ensure that you are comfortable with the cost before you dive headfirst into this whirlpool.

 

Step Three: Register Your PO Box

 

 

You have two options here — to register in person or online. It’s your choice.

 

These days, internet registration methods are used more frequently than the other. So we’ll focus on this one:

 

 

  1. Go to the USPS website.
  2. Search for a branch near you by typing in your zip code
  3. Choose your preferred box size
  4. Pick a payment plan (3, 6, or 12 months)
  5. Click on “reserve now”
  6. Travel to the branch you selected and
    pick up your keys!

 

See? It’s easy when you know how!

 

A BBB award in a desk

Is There an Even Better Solution? You Bet! Take a Look

 

Even though we live in a world that increasingly relies on digital communication – text messages, email, direct messaging, etc. – there’s still a need for a mailbox with a physical address, especially if you are running a business.

 

At the same time, there are a lot of drawbacks to using a traditional PO Box through the USPS, not the least of which is the fact that you are going to be physically restricted to a single location where you’re able to pick up your mail.

 

Thankfully though, with a service like our own here at US Global Mail, you won’t have to worry about the headache and hassle a PO Box brings to the table while still taking full advantage of all the benefits a mailbox with a physical address has to offer.

 

Below we highlight just a few of the advantages you’ll get leveraging our service, the perfect mix between a PO Box and a “virtual mail solution”!

 

Say Hello to Your “Forever” Address

 

When you choose to take advantage of our mailbox services you get a physical street address that you can use as your “forever” address, completely separating your mail from your business or your residence.

 

This eliminates a lot of the headache and hassle that a change of address with the USPS inevitably involves but also guarantees that none of your mail gets “lost in the shuffle” when you are changing addresses, either.

 

Combine that with the extra security and anonymity that this kind of mailing set up affords you and it’s easy to see why so many people are taking advantage of services like ours.

 

The outside of a post office building

Never Drive to the Post Office Again

 

Another of the biggest advantages you’ll enjoy when you set up your mail service here at US Global Mail is never having to drive to a physical post office location ever again.

 

Instead you’ll be able to create a physical street address to receive ALL of your mail and packages, establishing a central “collection point” for your mail that can then be rerouted and sent to you directly no matter you are. Considering that people spend over 500 hours annually behind a wheel, this can be a big time saver for everyone.

 

Do Virtual Mailboxes Have Unlimited Storage Space?

 

Traditional PO Boxes can get pretty expensive, especially if you are expecting a daily flood of mail (like you might if you are running a business).

 

Larger sized PO boxes in particular are very expensive, but the average rate of a USPS mailbox it’s anywhere between $25 and $40 – and you’re always limited to the size of the box that you have rented.

 

With our private mail acceptance service, though, you don’t have to worry about any of those issues any longer. We offer a variety of flexible mail service solutions that include unlimited incoming mail acceptance, guaranteeing that you don’t have to worry about important pieces of mail getting returned to sender just because there wasn’t enough space in your box.

 

Combine that with all the other benefits we provide here at US Global Mail and it’s easy to see why so many people choose our services time and time again.

 

Paper mail and a mailbox on a computer screen

Effortless 24/7 Access to Your Mail

 

You are always in full control of your US Global Mail virtual mailbox, too.

 

Not only will you have 24/7 access to your mail and your packages through our virtual service, but you’re also going to have access to images of all envelopes and boxes as they come in.

 

Every single time a new piece of mail comes in for you a picture will be taken of the outside envelopes/packages, a message will be forwarded to you via email or text directly, and you’ll know exactly when your mail has arrived (almost in real time).

 

We can digitize any mail that you request to have digitized so that you have instant access to those letters and those documents, can pick and choose the mail that gets forwarded to you in the mail that gets shredded and disposed of, and can even have checks deposited into your bank account (at your instruction and your discretion) without you having to run those kinds of errands, too.

 

Reliable Mail Forwarding

 

Because of the relationships we have with global shipping partners we can help you save upwards of 80% on retail shipping fees when you want your mail forwarded to you.

 

We can set up regular mail forwarding that make sure you get the mail that accumulates at your US Global Mail box on a regular basis, with many of our clients choosing to take advantage of weekly or monthly deliveries that make their life a lot more organized.

 

We also accept packages from all shipping partners (USPS, UPS, FedEx, DHL, etc.) and can guarantee that you’ll get your packages when you need them without delay and without having to spend a small fortune on shipping, too. In fact, you can calculate your shipping costs here.

 

Handshake with a security lock symbol above

Final Verdict

 

At the end of the day, it’s been our mission to make sure that the process for taking advantage of all that a virtual mailing service has to offer combined with a street address is as simple and as straightforward as possible.

 

We are proud of the reputation that we’ve built up offering our US Global Mail solutions to more than 80,000 customers and are continuously looking for ways to add even more value to our mailing services.

 

If you’re interested in leveraging the benefits we provide, or just want more details about how to make the most of the mailbox with a physical address services we offer, please don’t hesitate to contact us directly.

 

 

We are based out of Houston, Texas and you can reach us through our online chat and support tools or can drop us a line through our toll-free number (1-866-596-8965) during our normal business hours.

 

Be sure to have a look at the different mailing services we offer, with a range of plans designed to accommodate individuals, small families and organizations, and larger businesses that aren’t satisfied with being handicapped by a physical PO Box.

 

For more details, reach out to us today!

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Travelling Mailbox VS US Global Mail

In this blog, we will be taking about Travelling Mailbox.

If you have been following this thread for a while, you will have noticed our effort to take a deep look into all the available mail forwarding & virtual address companies, and help people understand some of the core differences, companies you can consider and companies you’d like to stay away from.

 

Here at US Global Mail, we are confident we offer the best service & at the lowest price on the market (guaranteed) & have proven to be the leader in mail forwarding, for over 20 years. With over 80,000 customers under our belt, US Global Mail is the largest virtual address & virtual mailbox firm in the US.

 

Today we will be looking at another service; Travelling Mailbox.

 

The main difference between companies like iPostal1, Post Scan Mail (etc) and US Global Mail has to do with whether mail is being processed in-house, or outsourced and independently owned pack & ship stores. Additionally, companies such as iPostal1, target a market of people focused on acquiring prestigious locations for their businesses, or conveniently located places where they can go and pick up their mail.

 

Travelling Mailbox is no different than any of the aforementioned services, and in fact they too offer several addresses throughout the country. In an effort to avoid repeating ourselves as to “why” that’s a bad idea, read the full explanation here.

 

To dig in deeper, we will see in more detail a great number of reasons why Travelling Mailbox is probably not your best option when it comes to mail forwarding.

 

Paper mail being delivered across the world

 

Shipping Rates

 

The advantage of working with a Virtual Mail company, is the fact that usually such services, process a good number of snail mail and ship an even larger amount. That essentially means, that shipping companies such as the UPS, are able to offer more favorable discounts to the company itself, which is passed down to the customer.

 

If you decide to move forward with Travelling Mailbox, unfortunately they do not share those savings with the customers but instead, simply offer retail shipping rates. If you are unsure what you should be paying for shipping, or looking to compare prices, check out our dynamic & accurate shipping calculator.

 

US Global Mail saves a lot of money when working with companies like FedEx & the UPS. And because we really care about offering the best bang for your buck, we pass on those discounts to you. It is an accurate estimate, that when forwarding your mail with us, you get up to 80% off on shipping costs. Travelling Mailbox unfortunately, not only does not come anywhere near those types of discounts; they don’t offer any discounts at all.

 

Shipping calculator price comparison

 

The monthly fee 

 

Why pay $15 per month, when you can only pay $10?

 

US Global Mail has a lower monthly fee, but it gets better; we also offer more perks than Travelling Mailbox does.

 

Here’s a short list of the additional benefits you get, when working with US Global Mail:

 

  • UNLIMITED incoming mail
  • UNLIMITED forwarding addresses
  • FREE letter storage for 180 days
  • FREE package storage for 30 days
  • FREE insurance up to $100 on every shipment
  • Consolidation & Repackaging on request*
  • Pick-up of documents on request*
  • Automatic forwarding options
  • Form 1583 Online Notarization Service
  • Wind-down option for easy account closing
  • Customs Paperwork Assistance

 

When everything is said and done, you are getting hundreds of dollars of additional value per month, not given to you by Travelling Mailbox.

 

And…even our monthly fee is 35% cheaper!

 

List of additional features offered with the signup of a virtual mailbox

 

Additional Fees

 

Unfortunately, so many mail forwarding & virtual mailbox companies, find a way to nickle & dime you for every bit of the service. As an example, Travelling Mailbox charges handling fees of $0.25/item after their limit, while US Global Mail offers unlimited handling with no fees at all.

 

Here’s another example: handling fees per box you receive.

 

US Global Mail doesn’t charge a dime, while Travelling Mailbox will charge you $4.95 per package.

 

We could go on and on: check deposit fees, shipment processing fees, low caps on letter storage and additional charges above those caps, limits on the number of users per account (unless you upgrade) etc.

 

The bottom line is: US Global Mail has transparent, straightforward pricing with no hidden charges that “miraculously” only show up after you have signed up for an annual plan already. What good would it be to us, to have people signing up for our service, and then cancelling the next year because we’re treating them with such ripoff tactics?

 

No.

 

We want to work with you, and help offer a streamlined virtual mail system that can help you keep track of all your snail mail, and the fraction of what you will pay the common mail forwarding service.

 

A torn out piece of paper with a note under neath that says: no hidden fees

 

Reviews

 

Speaking of customer service, we are the epitome of customer service in this industry. One of the biggest areas of our budget as a company, is spent on our customer support personnel. And we are glad to pay that kind of money! We are vigorous in hiring the best talent in the marketplace. Which is why we consider such employees as investments, rather than expenses.

 

We want to offer all customers, the best possible experience. And that can only be done if we employ talented & well treated customer service people. If they’re happy with our workplace environment, that will transfer over in your phone conversations or e-mail correspondence with them. It’s a win, win, win situation. And we couldn’t be prouder!

 

Below you will get a clear picture of who has the most well reviewed service on the market – both in qualitative and quantitative terms.

 

Trustpilot review comparison between US Global Mail & Travelling Mailbox

 

These reviews come from Trust Pilot, the most reputable review platform online, where every reviewer gets to be confirmed & verified as a genuine customer of the service.

 

Let’s analyze some of the data real quick:

 

Not only does US Global Mail have the highest review scoring, but in every single rating category, from “Bad” to “Excellent” – we outperform everyone; the smallest number of “Bad” reviews & highest number of “Excellent” reviews. And Travelling Mailbox does not seem to have enabled this customer review platform as part of their program, or at least it’s not ranking anywhere in the top 4 mail forwarding services.

 

When it comes to streamlined mail management & virtual addresses, the choice is simple!

 

For any questions, you can contact us here.

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Earth Class Mail VS US Global Mail

In today’s blog, we will be reviewing Earth Class Mail.

 

We have covered extensively the reasons why offering virtual addresses in several locations and outsourcing your mail for customers is a terrible and immoral idea. 

 

As a refresher, here are the top 3 reasons:

 

  • Increased security risk when it is outsourced to a smaller subcontractor
  • Mail theft & warehouse security
  • Location is irrelevant for virtual mailboxes; mail is uploaded to the cloud – so the location of your virtual address does not practically matter. 

 

Virtual mailbox displayed on the screen of a mobile phone

 

In today’s blog we will be exploring another Mail Forwarding company that you may come across; Earth Class Mail. 

 

Like iPostal1, they too advertise the “hundreds and hundreds” of locations they offer. 

 

As mentioned before, this is nothing better than a Cable Company (TV) pitching you to switch provider & get 1000 more channels that you’ll never watch.



Unlike iPostal1 though, in the case of Earth Class Mail things become even more problematic…

 

Here is an example of a location offered on their website.

 

Map showing the location of a pack & ship store for Earth Class Mail

 

“The Perfect Portland Address” they say..

 

Read the address again and you’ll see it’s nothing more than a PO Box…

 

Your virtual address is now a PO Box in Portland; very professional if you’re looking to register your business there (irony.)

Were you also interested in setting up a Business Listing with Google? 

 

There’s an issue with that…Google does not accept PO Boxes for the postcard verification. 

 

So what exactly is the value in offering a PO Box as a Virtual Address? 

 

No value really as:

 

  • It doesn’t look professional for business purposes
  • You can’t use it on Google
  • You can simply register a PO Box yourself and avoid the upsell
  • Earth Class Mail charges an arm & a leg, compared to what the Post Office will charge you.

 

Hand holding paper mail exiting through a computer screen

Pricing

 

Since we did bring up pricing, it’s probably worth going over the exact details on that. Objectively speaking, no matter what Mail Forwarding & Virtual Mailbox competitor you ask, the most expensive service is offered by Earth Class Mail. 

 

The lowest price you’ll ever get with Earth Class Mail is $39/mo and that does not include additional fees that come with the service. 

 

US Global Mail on the other hand only costs $10/mo and with a ton of Free Perks that Earth Class Mail will upsell you for. Here’s a list of those perks US Global Mail gives you:

 

List of perks & services offered with the signup of a virtual mailbox

 

So why is there such a big difference in pricing? 

 

For one, Earth Class Mail is a service strictly focused on business customers. Examples of those would be large law firms, accounting firms etc – that have a big volume of mail coming and need streamlined mail management. 

 

Another reason is the fact that US Global Mail is a larger company and with a lot more customers, meaning that we’re able to offer discounted rates not only on our monthly membership, but also when it comes to shipping (carriers will give greater discounts, the more mail items you send through them.)

 

Person tracking mail packages in a warehouse

 

Reviews

 

It’s easy for someone to tout their own horn. But what if you have an objective market-place in which people call out the best service? 

 

What is more transparent than reviews from customers who have signed up and used the service? 

 

Here is how we compare to Earth Class Mail (and even other services.)

 

Review comparison board for 4 mail forwarding companies

 

As you can see, we have far better ratings than anyone in the industry!

 

Additionally, Earth Class Mail has only received 2 reviews, compared to US Global Mail which has received over 700 reviews at the time of writing this article.

 

US Global Mail has been around since 1999, has over 80,000 customers under its belt and has been proven to be the leader in virtual addresses and mail forwarding. We do not take such an honor lightly and treat every customer as if it were our first!

 

For any any questions, you can message us here.