Tuesday, July 11, 2017

How to Pick Up Mail at the U.S. Post Office

To pick mail up at the U.S. Post Office, you need to find the correct location, determine what kind of mail that you are picking up and find the appropriate service counter when you arrive.

Picking Up the Mail

Find the right location. If you are required to pick mail up at the post office, it could be for a variety of reasons. You might have had your mail forwarded there from another address, you may have a registered or certified letter you need to sign for, or you may need to pick up your mail from a post office box.

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It is important that you determine the correct location to go to. There may be several locations in your area, but only one that services your particular home address with mail delivery. Go to USPS.com and click on "Locate A Post Office." Insert your street address including zip code and then click "Search." If there are multiple locations for your zip code, call the phone number next to the location to confirm that your mail goes through this location.

Typically, the U.S. Postal Service will deliver mail to your home address. But if the sender chooses to mail you a letter as "certified" or "registered," it usually means you are required to personally sign for reception of the item. If you are not at home when the letter carrier tries to delivery one of these letters, he will leave a small notice on your door or postbox indicting the arrival of the letter. It is important to read this notice to determine if the letter carrier is going to try to re-deliver to you the next day or if you can pick up this letter at the post office after a specific time.

Other possible reasons for mail pickup at the post office is because they have held your mail while you are out of town, you have forwarded your mail from a previous address, or you have requested general delivery to a post office. General delivery is available if you cannot receive mail at your address and a post office box is not an option for you.

Once you arrive at the post office, there will most likely be several service counter windows, depending on the size of your post office. To avoid standing in the wrong line or waiting unnecessarily, check posted signs or inquire with a customer service agent there. Once you determine the appropriate window to go to, it is simply a matter of waiting your turn and getting your mail.

You may be picking up your mail from a post office box. If you cannot receive mail at your address or simply prefer receiving mail at a post office, you will need to purchase the rental of a post office box. Fees for a six-month term start as low as $10 per month at some locations. If you are picking up mail from your post office box, go to USPS.com to determine the hours that the post office box lobby is open at your location. Some offices have 24-hour access.

Tips & Warnings

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To avoid the common long lines at the post office, consider the best time of the day to go. You might want to consider avoiding the lunch hour or after-work rush if possible.
If you are going on vacation, consider having your mail forwarded to a friend or family member. The mail-forwarding packet available at the post office allows you to decide the exact dates you would like mail forwarding to begin and end.

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