This is one of the most asked questions on the RV boards and groups. We have also been asked numerous times ourselves. We wrote a quick blog on this back in 2016. We were just getting started then. We have learned a lot in two years and thought it would be a good time to share.
There are many ways to get mail whether you are full-time or a snowbird. Here are some of the ways that people we know and ourselves get their mail. At the end of this article, we will tell you how we get our mail and whether we recommend that way or not.
Use Friends and Family
The first way we have seen that people get their mail is friends and family. Some of the people we have met use either family members or a friends address. When their mail comes in, that family member or friend will go through it and either send at predetermined times or wait for you to call and send the whole collection of mail to wherever you are at the time.
- Low cost- Your friend or family member will probably not charge you a whole lot to do this. You would only need to pay for the cost of shipping and maybe throw your friend or family member some occasional gas money and a gift card every now and then.
- You can use this address as your Domicile address.
- Seems like today everyone has a busy life schedule. This gives you a good reason to keep in touch with your friend or family member.
- There are not too many disadvantages if you pick a reliable friend or family member. The biggest one is once you ask them to forward your mail, you will have to wait until they have free time in their schedule to get to the post office
- They move. If your friend or family member moves, you will need to update all your mail to the new address.
Rent A Box At A Packaging Store
U.P.S. has many individually owned and operated packaging stores that you can use for your mail. They will usually text you when you get a package. Since they are individually owned and operated their prices may vary.
- You get a real street address for an address, not a box #
- If you are in or passing through the town where you have your box, there is 24 hour a day access
- Accepts packages from all carriers
- They will forward your mail to any way you are
- You might not be able to use this address as your legal address for domicile purposes
- Easy to set up
- Could be expensive
Use A Professional Mail Service
There are a few different mail services available to RV’ers today. They are all pretty good so you will need to research them and find which one has that one thing that stands out for you. They are also based out of different states so that is something you will need to take a look at.
- Professional, reliable and accurate with your mail handling.
- Overall pricing is a little better than a package store
- These are usually good to use as a legal address
- Some require a membership
How Will I Get the Mail To Me?
Ok, so now you know where your mail will be going but how do you get it to you? You have a couple different options.
If you are staying at a campground, you can ask the owners/managers if you could get your mail sent there. So far we have never had an owner/manager say no. If you do wind up at a campground that does not want you to get mail sent there or you’re boondocking you will need to come up with another plan.
One way is to use the Post Offices general delivery feature. Most (not all) offer general delivery. To use general delivery, first call the post office of whatever area you are in to see if they participate. Then get the exact address of that post office. You will have to have your mail addressed a certain way so make sure you follow their directions. Once your mail is delivered, you will have 30 days to pick it up.
Your second option is to have it sent to the local UPS packaging store. This is probably going to cost you a few extra bucks but you will need to determine how bad you need your mail.
You also need to determine how you will get your mail shipped. First class, priority, overnight, UPS ground to name a few. Whatever you pick will ultimately determine your overall cost to get your mail. You should consider these overall costs when you set up your mailing service.
We chose a mail service out of Florida. After our research, we decided that is what would work best for us. We also use it for our legal address. Even though we have switched everything to online statements, you will always have something that needs a physical delivery. We have that stuff forwarded to whatever campground we are in and have it sent the cheapest way. That is what works for us.
We use St Brendan’s Isle and have been using them for over 2 years. We are extremely happy with them and would highly recommend them. If you decide to use them for your mail service company, tell them Dennis & Chris #11690 sent you!!!