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Monday, December 5th
Earth Class Mail is a popular option for getting a virtual mailbox: since 2004, they've processed more than 18 million pieces of mail and helped deposit over $2.4 billion in checks. There are plans for both individuals and businesses, and ECM's pricing has gotten much more straightforward over the years. Unfortunately, people tend to complain about unexpected a la carte charges and other fees, and customer service here seems to be on the decline. We recommend skipping Earth Class Mail when choosing a provider for your virtual mailbox.
Traveling Mailbox was once a top-rated option for virtual mailbox services. However, despite maintaining an "A+" rating from the Better Business Bureau, this company has gotten many customer complaints that describe delays of several weeks in getting mail processed - and without much help from Traveling Mailbox support reps. This is our last-place option among virtual mailbox providers.
When you hear the term "virtual mailbox" , you might think it's referring to your email inbox. The concept is similar, but it relates to your real-world, physical mail and making it 100% digital. Still, many people aren't sure how exactly it all works.
First, you authorize a company to act as your agent (by submitting a notarized copy of USPS Form 1583) and select one of their available addresses. Once you've forwarded your mail or changed your address on file with your credit card company, the DMV, and anywhere else that sends it to you, the virtual mailbox company will scan the outside of everything that comes in your name. You then sign in to your dashboard, indicate what you'd like done with each piece - scan the contents, forward to your location, or shred and discard - and you're done.
There are several other services that can be included with your virtual mailbox plan. These include check depositing (by forwarding them to the bank of your choice), package inspection, mail and package forwarding, and even remote notarization of your USPS form. Be aware that some providers include such features with your monthly or annual plan, while others will charge a la carte for any extra services you use. Those can really add up, so it's smart to have an idea of what your average needs will be and choose a virtual mailbox service that won't wind up costing an arm and a leg.
Wondering why virtual mailboxes are so popular? Think about how many people are traveling without a fixed permanent address, working as digital nomads around the globe, or operating a small business out of their home and don't want prospective customers to know the address of their residence? Virtual mailboxes can be a fantastic solution in those cases. Even large corporations are taking advantage of outsourcing their brick-and-mortar mailrooms and having all inbound mail received and sorted digitally, saving their employees time by having everything routed automatically to the right person.
With more than a dozen well-known options for virtual mailboxes, you might feel overwhelmed deciding which one is right for you. It's worth taking some time to compare them carefully, because it can be costly and time-consuming to set up the service - and to cancel and reroute your mail if you don't wind up liking it. Keep in mind these factors as you evaluate several different virtual mailbox options:
Virtual mailboxes can take care of getting your mail to you no matter where you roam, and TopConsumerReviews.com has evaluated and ranked today's most popular options. We're sure this information will help you choose the right service for your needs, business or personal!
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