I’m about to wrap up contract work with my current employer next week. Afterward, I’m planning to head overseas for some slow travel in Asia. When you plan to leave your country for a few months, there are some details that you want to be careful not to neglect. One is what happens to any mail you might need to receive. Not email. I mean good old-fashioned paper snail mail. A good solution is to use an online open and scan service like the one I use called Traveling Mailbox.
If you’ve never heard of this type of service, let me share my experience. There are a few companies providing these types of services. I ended up choosing Traveling Mailbox.
The setup takes a bit of effort because you need to fill out some forms and get them notarized. After all, you’re allowing a company to open and scan your mail. It wasn’t too difficult but expect to spend a few bucks to get something notarized.
After your account is set up, you’ll have a PO Box address as well as a physical address the company provides you. Once your account is set up you can start letting places know your new mailbox.
How it Works
Let say you get a letter from a friend. The service receives your mail and the first thing that happens is they will scan the envelope. You’ll be notified that you have mail and you can log in and see the scanned image of the sealed letter. You can usually recognize what the contents of mail by the envelope.
Now you have some options
- If the mail is sensitive, you could have them forward the mail to you wherever you are in the world.
- If you wish, you can have them open the envelope and scan the contents for you to view it. You can still forward it to you if you wish after opening and scanning.
- You can delete the scan at any time.
There are other features available if you wish to sign up. If you receive checks in the mail and don’t want to wait to forward them to your current location, you can fill out more paperwork and allow them to endorse and deposit the check directly into your account. There are several ways to forward mail and prices vary by weight, destination, class of service and so on it’s best to chat with customer service to get all of the options and prices.
Why You Might Want This
If you change addresses frequently, it’s a pain to have to update every one of your new address all the time. There is also the concern that you might forget to forward mail every time you change locations.
If you go overseas, this will keep you connected to your life in the US. Using an open and scan service will keep you up to date with mail
This is a lot like a post office box but without ever requiring you to make a trip to the post office.
After doing my research I felt Traveling Mailbox is best for me but there are other options. Here are other companies providing similar services.
|Provider||Price (subject to change)|
|Virtual Post Mail||$9.99-59.99/month|
|St. Brendan’s Isle||$11.99-29.99/month|
|Earth Class Mail||$49-499/month|
|Post Scan Mail||$9.95-39.95/month|
|US Global Mail||$10-15/month|
This post contains affiliate links. I may receive a commission for sign-ups to Traveling Mailbox. I’m a customer and believe in their service.