When people join the military they expect their life to change, often for the better. One thing people often forget about is their mail and packages. You never knew how to receive your mail effectively when your assignment changes or you are deployed overseas. The mail will either start to pile up at home or get lost. Seasoned military personnel have learned over time what options are most effective when it comes to their mail.
The truth is that people who travel or who get deployed in the military have to figure out how to handle mail as this becomes extremely important. You need to make sure it does not get lost or stolen and that you can access it if necessary.
Getting all of this done is slightly more challenging than you would think, and of course, it also depends on where you are being deployed and how long you will be gone. According to the Lakeland post office, there are four ways to handle this:
- Have a friend or relative pick up your mail and hold it for you.
- Ask the US post to put a hold on your mail.
- Forward your mail to a family member, neighbor or friend.
- Pay a forwarding service to handle your mail and send it to you wherever you go.
Before being deployed you should choose the option that best fits your needs. Each of these options has certain limitations. Even so, one of these might be better than others depending on your situation.
Short Term Solution
A short term solution is to send your mail to a friend or neighbor who lives nearby. You can ask them to stop by your mailbox and get your mail. They can hold it for you until you return. This works well if you only need to leave for a few weeks. Beyond that, it can become a burden for the person you have chosen. This is because the person has to change his schedule to pick up your mail and let’s not forget this is a responsibility. If that person has other concerns, he won’t be able to continue to pick up the mail for you. You also run a bit of a risk here because mail is confidential and you don’t really want anyone else to know about your financial situation or about the mail you receive from other people.
Place a Hold
If you are leaving for a short while you can ask the postal people to put a hold on your mail. However, this is only an option for a few days or a week at most. Once you return you can go to the postal office and ask for your arrived mail.
If you plan on being away for some time, you might want to have the Postal Office forward your mail to a loved one. This way they won’t have to walk or drive down to your mailbox. You can ask your post office to forward your mail for up to six months a year.
Use a Mail Forwarding Service
This is probably the best solution and the option most military personnel find to work best. If you are out of the country for a long period of time, your best option is to use a mail forwarding service. This is a company that offers you a way to receive your mail wherever you are in the world. They will hold or send you the mail at your request. Usually, a mail forwarding service offers several plan options to choose from. Just look for mail forwarding services in your area. Visit the company and ask them for the best option for military personnel.