Though plenty of people choose to get a mailbox through the United States Postal Service (USPS), for a couple of different reasons those options may not be that viable.
For starters, not everyone lives in a location that is conveniently near a US postal office. Most every town in the country has a post office nearby, but some areas are harder to reach than others – and some locations just aren’t all that convenient to get to during normal business hours, particularly in busy cities and municipalities.
On top of that, a USPS PO Box is always going to have a PO Box number attached to it as opposed to a physical address. Some people want the credibility and legitimacy that a physical address brings to the table without having to worry about sacrificing their privacy or relative anonymity, though, especially if they are running a business and want to use the box as their business’s mailing address.
And while the USPS does a great job at accepting most packages (in most circumstances) they may or may not receive packages from companies like UPS, FedEx, or DHL depending on the size, frequency of deliveries, and a variety of other reasons.
In those kinds of situations you end up having smaller packages, envelopes, and parcels sent directly to your PO Box and larger packages sent physical mailing address – having to juggle both of those different addresses to make sure that you are using the right one at the right time.
Thankfully though, you aren’t limited to using a United States Postal Service PO Box exclusively if you want to take advantage of mailbox services.
UPS – one of the most trusted names in the shipping industry worldwide – provides a whole host of mailbox services, including UPS personal mailbox solutions as well as business mailbox solutions.
Below we dig a little deeper into everything you need to know about UPS private mailbox options, the anticipated UPS mailbox prices you might have to pay to take advantage of the services, and basically everything else you need to know before you sign on the dotted line and take advantage of solutions.
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What is a UPS Mailbox?
UPS mailbox services are almost identical to the PO Box services available at every USPS postal office, with a couple of little wrinkles that make them more attractive – but we’ll get into that in just a little bit.
When you sign up for a UPS store PO Box you’re basically getting a cabinet sized mailbox that you can use just the same as you would at the post office, but you’re also getting extra space to receive packages from pretty much every delivery service imaginable as well.
The mailbox size options from UPS are pretty similar to what you get with the USPS as well, though different UPS Stores will have even larger mailbox options specifically designed for high-volume mail customers as well as businesses that expect to have quite a few packages and parcels coming through the post.
Your mailbox is going to be physically located inside of a UPS store and attached to a physical street address. That’s a departure from the way that the USPS runs things, having you use a PO Box number that may not work for your specific needs.
What are the Benefits of a UPS Mailbox?
The biggest benefit of a UPS mailbox (and one of the top reasons that people are willing to pay premium UPS mailbox prices compared to what you get at the post office) is the amount of privacy that these kinds of the box services provide.
You’ll no longer have to share your personal address to have packages shipped to you, especially from businesses that are not able or are not willing to mail packages you might order online to traditional PO Box addresses.
Instead you’ll be able use your UPS mailbox address just the same way you would any other street address, enjoying the privacy and anonymity that these services have to offer.
Another of the bigger benefits that UPS mailboxes provide is the ease of access you’ll have to all of your mail pieces.
Going down to the post office every day gets to become a bit of a chore but is absolutely necessary if you have a smaller sized PO Box. You’ll have to make sure that you visit during normal business hours and you’ll also have to plan around going on Sunday (as the post office closed that day) – issues that you won’t have to worry about when you move forward with UPS Store PO Box services.
In fact, a lot of UPS Personal mailbox options and UPS Private mailbox options include 24/7 access to your mailbox as well as to the larger package lockers. You’ll receive a key card or a physical key to gain access to the mail delivery area that you can use whenever is most convenient for you, avoiding the headache and hassle that the traditional USPS schedules inevitably involve.
UPS Personal mailbox options also guarantee deliverability, especially packages and parcels that need someone to sign for them upon arrival. The odds are good that you’ve had to deal with packages that were returned to sender or packages that had to go out for redelivery a couple of days later just because no one was around to sign for them when they arrived – usually because you were at work or away from home.
With a UPS Private mailbox that problem is eliminated entirely.
There will always be someone at the UPS store to receive your packages and sign for them upon delivery during normal business hours, safely securing them in a private locker that only you have access to so that you can retrieve them when it’s most convenient for you.
Lastly, and maybe this is the biggest benefit for those that move physical locations on a regular basis, your UPS Store PO Box is going to have an address that stays with you – even if the physical address of your home or business changes every now and again.
This allows you to avoid having to set up mail forwarding, it allows you to avoid having to contact everyone you’ve ever done business with about your new address, and it guarantees that your mail delivery rates stay consistently high even while your physical operations are uprooted and moved to a new location.
UPS business address options attached to these kinds of mailboxes are a huge asset that you won’t want to overlook as a smart or strategic business owner.
What are the Drawbacks of UPS Mailboxes?
While there are a lot of benefits to using a UPS personal mailbox there are also drawbacks and disadvantages you’ll want to be aware of, too.
For starters, UPS business mailbox cost estimates are usually slightly higher than what you might have paid the post office for similarly sized mailboxes – though this isn’t always the case. UPS is very much a for-profit organization whereas the post office is run by the government, and that’s important to consider when you move forward with these solutions.
Secondly, you may or may not feel totally comfortable having all of your mail handled by a private entity as opposed to having it handled by a federal government agency. This is a point of personal preference, and even though UPS has a fantastic reputation for privacy and security of everything that they receive and deliver it’s still something you want to think about.
Lastly, if you do decide to move out of town, across the state come across the country, or across the world your physical UPS business address isn’t going to be as useful to you any longer.
You’ll then have to go through the process of changing that address your banking credit cards, your bills, your customer relations, and with your friends and family members – which is just as much of a pain as doing the same thing through the USPS.
Breaking Down UPS Mailbox Sizes
When it comes to figuring out how much is a PO Box at UPS for you personally it’s really more about figuring out the size of the UPS mailbox you want than anything else.
The UPS Store has three standard sizes available at almost all of their locations – Small, Medium, and Large.
Small boxes are recommended for individuals that do not anticipate having a whole lot of mail delivered on a regular basis. Medium boxes are recommended for small businesses that expect a decent flow of mail to come through their mailbox, with Large boxes expressly recommended for small to medium-sized businesses that have a heavy flow of mail to contend with.
There are sometimes “custom” mailbox sizes available for you to pick and choose from depending on the specific UPS Store that you are doing business with. If the standard sizes aren’t going to work for you it’s worth speaking to someone at that local outlet to see if there’s a better option for you to proceed with.
Breaking Down UPS Mailbox Costs
A couple of different things going to UPS mailbox prices, not the least of which is the size of the mailbox that you have chosen (which we just highlighted above).
Small size boxes from UPS run between $10 and $30 a month, Medium size boxes run between $20 and $40 a month, and Large size boxes run between $30 and $50 a month.
The location of the UPS store, the town, city, or municipality it is situated in, and the demand for different mailbox sizes are all going to contribute to UPS business mailbox cost structures you want to be aware of.
Thankfully though, all you have to do is call a local UPS Store that you want to set up a mailbox through and asked them for a quote or estimate about the types of mailboxes you are looking to take advantage of.
They’ll be able to clue you in about the specifics of their UPS box prices, how exactly to sign up for a UPS business address with them, and how to make the most of the UPS personal mailbox and UPS private mailbox you’ve decided to rent.
Other things that factor into UPS mailbox prices include deposits and fees, with most stores charging a nonrefundable fee of between $10 and $15 upfront for the key that they provide to your mailbox. If you need a new key (after misplacing or having that key stolen) you may be assessed a replacement fee on top of the new nonrefundable $10-$15 deposit.
Some locations are also going to charge overflow fees of three dollars (sometimes more) if your mailbox is constantly spilling over and you allow excessive amounts of mail to build up before you come and claim them.
Large packages that are left unclaimed for extended amounts of time can also have fees assessed, and late payment fees are also pretty common if you aren’t able to meet your monthly charges on time.
Of course, you can also save quite a bit of money when it comes to UPS business mailbox costs just by prepaying three months, six months, or 12 months (or more) in advance. Sometimes these discounts can be pretty substantial – which is why you want to ask about them before you sign on the dotted line.
Virtual Mailbox Services – A Better Alternative to UPS Mailboxes
Of course, if UPS Store mailbox services aren’t exactly what you are looking for you may want to zero in on Virtual Mailbox solutions like the ones available from US Global Mail.
One of the most trusted brands in the mailbox industry today, US Global Mail has a sterling silver reputation for putting their customers first, for securing the packages and mail pieces that they receive or send for their clients, and for their pricing and service track record.
When you take advantage of the Virtual Mailbox solutions from this company you’re able to get immediate updates about every single piece of mail – packages, parcels, everything – that comes through thanks to your dedicated digital dashboard.
Mail pieces are photographed and scanned as soon they arrive, daily updates are pushed to you immediately, and you then have the opportunity to have those pieces forwarded to you, opened and scanned for improved speed and security, or disposed of.
You are always in control!
To learn more about all that US Global Mail has to offer order sign up for virtual mailbox services contact us today for more details.