PO Box vs Street address--Rant

Discussion in 'Random Ramblings' started by woodmort, Nov 19, 2010.

  1. woodmort

    woodmort Chillin' With My Peeps

    3,168
    34
    201
    Jul 6, 2010
    Oxford NY
    OK, here's our story. When we first moved here 48 years ago we rented in town and took out a PO box. Three years later we bought our house 2.5 miles out of town but, since we were in town every day anyway, kept the PO box as our mailing/billing address. In fact, this was the time before 9-1-1 so we actually didn't have a street address all mail was either addressed to the PO or RFD--it predated UPS and FedEx too so the USPS delivered all packages. As time went on the powers that be gave everyone street addresses but we kept our PO box--I'd rather go to the PO every day than have mail sit out in the weather where everyone can go through it. The only time we actually had to use our street address was when delivery was being made by a carrier other than USPS--which we picked up in the PO. No problem until the last couple of years.

    Of late, whenever we order something most companies refuse to allow us to use our billing address with the PO box number as as shipping address. While this is understandable if the item is being shipped via UPS or FedEx (both of whom have drivers that know us anyway), they also refuse it for stuff being shipped via USPS. This creates all kinds of problems since the local rural mailman can't make the delivery to a nonexistent address. Fortunately, we're well enough known at the PO that most of the time they'd hold our package there and we'd get a nasty note in the box about our address--the gal that works the window just laughed every time I come up with one of these. Amazon is probably the worst in this regard but we get the same thing with many catalog companies. I finally relented and put up a mailbox but instructing the carrier that, if the package can't fit in the box, to return it to the PO for pick up--we now have two addresses but keep all our billing addresses at the PO. This works but is a pita since it means it often takes an extra day to get delivery.

    Before you come down on me in re to why I keep the PO box let me say I don't mind going into town once a day for the mail and, as a result, have avoided having to go through the hassle of changing our mailing address. People that knew it years ago can still write to us. Also, several years ago there was a rash of mail being stolen from rural boxes, something I'm willing to pay the USPS a yearly box rental fee to avoid. Also, apparently, there is some sort of security regulation regarding shipping certain items to PO boxes but I wonder what people whose only address is a PO box get these--in our town there is no carrier delivery, you have to go to the PO for mail unless you can get on a rural route.

    So anyway, I'd rant longer but I have to go to the PO.
     
  2. annie3001

    annie3001 My Girls

    Jun 11, 2009
    Ct.
    wow, saw the topic and had to respond. i have thought many times of getting a po box. our mailman is horrible. we GET the wrong mail at least once a week. frustrating. one time our mail was tampered with and it was our very personal bank statement. i was so angry, i ended up getting a new account. if we get boxes shipped to us, (we use internet for lots of stuff) sometimes they just throw the box on top of our mailbox. which is located on the street. i am waiting for it to fall over, and get run over. i have called the post master and complained. for me its too far to go pick up the mail everyday.[​IMG]
    luckily the mail truck has bad brakes and i can tell when they come to the house.[​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2010
  3. Nana2KJS

    Nana2KJS Chicks-n-Ahs

    501
    8
    141
    Mar 21, 2009
    SE Kansas
    I've worked at our local post office for over 20 years and I have a PO box. Let me tell you, it's even more annoying when I'm standing 10 feet away and a clerk decides to get catty and sends my mail back because it doesn't have the box # on it! Happened more than once before that particular clerk retired.

    The biggest problem we are running into now has to do with our "last mile" contract with UPS and Fedex. The catalog companies ship out with our competitors but we do the final delivery. So in actuality, the PO box number should be good enough, but the catalog company software won't accept it as valid.

    Easiest way around it - use both on the same line. The order form software should accept 123 S Main box 456, or 12345 CR 567 box 123, or whatever, without kicking it out. UPS or Fedex should be able to deliver it because it has your physical address on it, and the post office is required to deliver it to your PO box if your box number is anywhere in the address.
     
  4. Alabama ee

    Alabama ee Chillin' With My Peeps

    881
    6
    131
    Feb 18, 2010
    Quote:Whenever we put both are on ours, it ends up at the street address.
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2010
  5. Nana2KJS

    Nana2KJS Chicks-n-Ahs

    501
    8
    141
    Mar 21, 2009
    SE Kansas
    Quote:Annie - this kind of delivery is unacceptable. Are you on a rural route? We have a carrier here now that we are disciplining for this kind of thing. Everyone is in such a hurry anymore. I would like to suggest that you call 1-800-ASK-USPS. It is our national comsumer affairs line and every office is required to respond within 3 days. Not sure you'll get much response, but if you don't hear back from the postmaster or supervisor, you can also request that your issue be bumped up to the next level authority.

    I'm sorry you have had such poor experience with our service. Most of us take great pride in doing the very best job we can for all our customers. I carried mail for 15 years, 11 on the same route, and it appalls me that anyone would be that careless.

    Don't give up on all of us!
     
  6. Alabama ee

    Alabama ee Chillin' With My Peeps

    881
    6
    131
    Feb 18, 2010
    Quote:We also have a PO Box. I would take my mailbox down, but it is brick. To get to it , I have to cross a road that preople drive 65 mph. It is not safe. I used to worry when the kids were smaller that they would follow me across and get hit. Also, the mail gets wet.
     
  7. Knock Kneed Hen

    Knock Kneed Hen California Dream'in Chickens

    4,154
    68
    278
    Feb 15, 2010
    So. Cal.
    Quote:Great advice!! We don't get mail delivered to the house so we have no choice but to have a P.O. Box. Which is fine except that as you point out, some mail order companies don't recognize the P.O. Box. Also, if we order something to have it sent by UPS to the house the companies often have problems because our bank account address is our P.O. Box. Never seem to be able to make all the people happy all the time! [​IMG]

    To top it off, our street address is sometimes listed as a singular word and sometimes plural. I have to write _____(s) so that whoever is inputting the information will try one if the other doesn't work. Sometimes they don't get it or pay attention so I get the call that it's not going through.

    I feel your pain Woodmort!!

    On the upside, our small post office will usually put mail in our box even if it doesn't have the P.O. Box # on it. Especially if it looks important. They've memorized everyone's name & P.O. Box #.
     
  8. joebryant

    joebryant Overrun With Chickens

    Dang, I hate going down my quarter-mile driveway to get the mail from the mailbox down on the road. Can't imagine my having to go into town every day to get it.
     
  9. wildeflowers

    wildeflowers I suspect fowl play!

    428
    2
    111
    Jun 29, 2010
    That's a good idea, Nana.

    I understand that for some things it's a security issue, but I assume your not purchasing nitro or stuff like that. LOL Quite frankly, I think you have a right to have your mail and packages delivered where you want. After all, once you've paid for it, it belongs to you. We live far from family, and I personally HATE those companies that also refuse to do bill to/ship to. They claim it's for our protection to prevent someone from using our cards and getting merchandise. Clearly, it is to protect themselves, since all credit cards nowadays will not obligate you to pay for items if the card is stolen. And it is stolen more often from THEIR computer systems by hackers. I want to say, why don't you beef up security and stop causing problems for me? but I just choose to spend my money elsewhere instead.
     
  10. Nana2KJS

    Nana2KJS Chicks-n-Ahs

    501
    8
    141
    Mar 21, 2009
    SE Kansas
    Whenver both are on ours, it ends up at the street address.

    Have you asked for dual delivery ... in our office some people have requested that it be delivered "as addressed". If the carrier delivers any mail there at all, he would probably also deliver the packages there.

    Either that or UPS/Fedex had those packages. We don't do all of them all the time. Just depends on what the shipper pays for.​
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by