A Post Office Box provides you with the same opportunity to forward your mail as a street address. Whether you are switching boxes because of a permanent move or taking an extended vacation, you can set up mail to temporarily forward from one PO Box to another or file a permanent change of address. To set up mail forwarding, visit your local post office or the United States Postal Service website at www.usps.com.
When you are moving to a new city and want to transfer your PO Box service, visit your current post office or one in your new town to request a new application for a box. If your new box is the same size as your current box, it can be transferred without charge once per year. Fill out the application and present two forms of identification to the postal clerk, including one photo ID and one piece of identification with your current address, such as a lease or mortgage, vehicle registration or insurance policy. Per the United States Postal Service (USPS), Social Security cards, credit cards and birth certificates are not acceptable IDs.
You can also submit an application at www.usps.com by clicking Quick Tools, then Rent/Renew a PO Box. However, you must still visit a post office in person to provide proof of identification and pick up your new keys. After you open the new box, fill out a change of address form for the old box. If you are visiting a post office, a paper form is available, otherwise, you can file a change of address request online.
Transfers After Relocation
When you are moving to a new place over a period of time, you can keep your former PO Box at the same time that you set up a new one in your new city. The USPS allows customers to manage up to five PO Boxes online. If you choose this option, consider manually changing your address with your billing companies, such as utilities or credit card companies, and any subscription services immediately to ensure you receive necessary correspondence at your new location. When you are prepared to close the old box permanently, file a formal change of address form. This provides you with an opportunity to review all mail received at your old address when you visit. Mail forwarding does not include bulk mail, such as sales materials or certain catalogues.
Relocating for the winter? All you need to do is secure a PO Box in your new location and file a change of address form indicating that the move is temporary. The change of address form features a blank for entering the date a temporary move ends. Your mail can be forwarded to your temporary PO Box for a period of 15 days to one year.
Visit www.usps.com or your local post office to transfer mail service from your existing PO Box to a box at a new location. One transfer per year to a box of the same size is allowed by USPS policy, but you must fill out a new application.
Ashley Adams-Mott has 12 years of small business management experience and has covered personal finance, career and small business topics since 2009. She is a full-time government and public safety reporter and holds a BSBA in accounting from Columbia College. Her work has appeared online with USA Today, The Nest, The Motley Fool, and Yahoo! Finance.