Stop Mail When I’m Away

Going on holidays? Let An Post keep your mail safe for you until you return. MailMinder will look after your post while you are away, whether you’re in Ireland or abroad.
The MailMinder service is now available online.
How does it work?Step by stepHow much?What next?Terms and conditionsApplication formsGlossary of TermsMailMinder suspends delivery of mail to your home or business while you’re away, for up to 12 weeks. Simply complete your MailMinder application online or pick up an application form and pay for the service at your local Post Office.
Or send your completed application form along with the fee, by post to An PostRedirection UnitGround FloorGPOO’Connell Street LowerFreepostDublin 1D01 F5P2
We need your completed application form and payment at least five working days in advance of start date,  then let us do the rest.

first class international mail

We will mind your mail for less than four weeks, four to eight weeks or eight to twelve weeks.  You can arrange to have the mail held for more than one address.
Apply online, download or pick up an application form from your local Post Office. Complete all necessary details including:
The address(es) you want MailMinder to cover,  The date of the bookingThe date you want MailMinder to begin holding your postThe date you want to start receiving mail againThe required fee (see the table below) & payment detailsWe accept the following methods of payment:

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Postal Money orderCredit/Debit card by contacting Customer ServicesChequeCash when paying at your local Post Office
Payment online is by Credit/Debit card only.
MailMinder online
You will also need a valid email address when you apply for the MailMinder service online.With our address look up simply fill in the first line of your address and press the “Find Address” button.If you cannot find the correct address in the list of results, you can enter the address manually.
Once payment is successfull, the order details including the MailMinder reference number (a sequential number with a prefix of MMS) will be displayed.
A copy of the completed PDF form is then automatically sent to the email address that you originally entered for your reference. You then need to:
Print and sign the PDF application form.Post your application form to
An PostRedirection UnitGround FloorGPOO’Connell Street LowerFreepostDublin 1,D01 F5P2Remember to return the booking form to us at least five working days in advance.
Then sit back and enjoy your holiday – your mail will be delivered when you return!
Duration Per Address Less than 4 weeks €19.99*4 to 8 weeks €75.008 to 12 weeks €110.00*Special offer available until August 31, 2018.We need at least five working days notice to make sure your application is processed quickly.
You can choose to suspend delivery to more than one address.

what time does the mail come today

You can have your MailMinder application form resent by email before the service is activated by entering in your MailMinder reference number and the email address used when setting up the service.
Additionally, if you need a reminder of your MailMinder reference number, simply click the – Lost your Reference No.? link– on the Resend Form. Once you enter your email address, the most recent MailMinder reference number for this email address will be sent through.
For further information, contact Customer Service: 01 705 7600
Please noteThe retained mail is delivered with the standard mail delivery on the recommencement date indicated by the customer on the application form. It is not available for collection by the customer at any time prior to, or after, this date.
The applicant must be 18 years or older. The application is made on behalf of all residents at the address for which the service is requested. An Post needs at least five working days advance notice to put in place the MailMinder service (hereinafter referred to as the “Service”). The next date for delivery of mail will be as specified by the customer in the booking form. The Service is not available for delivery points shared by multiple addressees, e.g. college, boarding house or certain business premises. You agree to indemnify An Post for use of the Service in breach of this term.
The mail will not be available for collection from the delivery service unit while the Service is in place. If An Post cancels the Service because it is unworkable it will refund the fee but will incur no further liability in this event. If the Customer cancels the Service after it has begun An Post will not refund the fee paid.

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The Service can only be cancelled by written request addressed to: An Post, Redirection Unit, Ground Floor, GPO, O’Connell Street Lower, Freepost, Dublin 1, D01 F5P2.The Service does not apply to items sent via An Post Parcel Service.
All national Registered Post items must be returned to the sender within 10 days from the date of posting. International items will be held for 16 working days.  (a) Where the customer is a limited company this form must be signed by the company secretary and at least one other director of the company. (b) Where the customer is a partnership or associate is required (if a seperate sheet is necessary for this purpose it must be appended to this document and contain the partners’ or associates signatures below the following statements: ‘We have read and agree to the attached terms and conditions of the Mailminder service of An Post’).  (c) An Post reserves the right to discontinue or terminate the Service at its absolute discretion.
The maximum amount of time you can take out the Service for is twelve weeks.
Limitation on Liability: Save where the liability of An Post is statutorily excluded the following limitations on liability for breach of this contract will apply: The liability of An Post for any direct loss or damage arising from this contract is limited to the fee paid for the service. An Post will not be liable, in any event, for any consequential or indirect loss or damage, including, without limitation, loss of income, profits, interest, utility or loss of market, however arising in respect of the Service. An Post will not be liable for any failure of this Service.


How To Hold Mail while On Vacation


How to Hold Mail While On Vacation (USPS Delivery Options and Advice)
Every time I am about to take an extended trip, I stop to consider what to do about our mail while away from home. With email and paperless (electronic) billing so common, I certainly receive less snail mail of a critical basis than in years past. However with charity requests, catalogs, sale circulars, and other bulk (junk) mail received almost daily, my mailbox tended to fill up in a matter of days. So do I…

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Put the mail on hold at the US Post Office (local branch)
Let it pile up in the (never quite large enough) mailbox
Ask a family member or trusted neighbor to pick it up regularly​
Why I’ve Put My Mail on Vacation Hold
House Mailbox – Vacation Hold?
As someone who prefers not to inconvenience others, in the past I have usually put our mail on hold with the post office. It seemed like the most secure and convenient option and costs nothing. Unfortunately my success rate while living in at several addresses in Pennsylvania (house and townhouse) and California (apartment and condo) has been mixed. Therefore I have gone back and forth among these three options to ensure that our mail does not overflow the box. The last thing I want to return home from vacation to is missing or lost mail.

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I take lots of vacations and for the majority of situations, holding my mail worked. Twice my mail was never held as requested, but somehow it all fit (was shoved) in our mailbox while on a 10-day trip. Once our accumulated mail was not delivered to our home as of the return date (the date I picked for the mail service to resume). Therefore I had to make a special trip to the post office during business hours which was not fun.

3 Ways to Submit Hold Mail to USPS
So if you have decided to put your mail on hold for your next vacation, now comes the easy part. Do you want to go to the post office in person, use the website, or call them? Here is a summary of your three options.

In Person
You can visit your local post office branch in person if you prefer the experience of filling out the paper form. My advice is to avoid the lunch hour unless you want to wait in a long line to hand the paper form to a postal employee. With this option you can have the satisfaction of making sure your hold mail form is completed without any mistakes.

USPS Authorization to Hold Mail – For Example Purposes Only
Look up your local U.S. Post Office branch location, available services, and opening hours on the USPS website.

U.S. Post Office Branch Locator
Putting your mail on vacation hold using the website is my favorite way. Since I develop websites I prefer the tech way of getting things done, so the online form is how I have put my own mail on hold.

fedex 2018 holiday schedule Website Hold Mail Menu
Keep reading to learn how to submit your mail hold request online since the process has a few gotchas. The complete online USPS mail hold how-to guide is below.

By Phone
Would you believe the U.S. Post Office has a toll-free 800 customer service number? They handle mail issues, questions, and requests nationwide and can put you in touch with you local branch carrier if necessary. You can give them a call to ask questions about putting your mail on hold while away and submit your hold mail request in just a few minutes.

Ask USPS Contact Information
The phone number to call the U.S. Postal Service is 1-800-ASK-USPS (1-800-275-8777).

Telephone customer service hours are Monday – Friday from 8am until 8:30pm ET and Saturday from 8am until 6pm ET. Not bad hours!

Hold Mail Step by Step Guide
Since the online option is the fastest, most convenient, and perhaps most reliable way to put your mail on hold, I’ll take you through the quick and easy steps.

Step 1 – Visit the Official U.S. Post Office Website
No you are not looking at the USPS website now, but thanks for visiting my VacationCounts blog and supporting my effort to help people take the best time off work and life. Here is the link to the USPS Hold Mail page which opens in a new browser window. You’ll be following the step-by-step instructions which I’ll help you with, so keep both browser tabs open so you can refer back.

Hold Mail Service (USA Postal Service – Official)
Step 2 – Name and Address Entry Check
You will need to accurately enter your home mailing address so the postal database can look you up and verify that it can put in a request to your local post office to hold your mail. Enter your name and official home address in the “What’s your address” box. Your phone number and email address are also required fields and of course your zip code is critical.

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Vacation Mail Hold Name Address Form
When your are done click the “Check Availability” button to submit the information to the server. If your address is correct the form will let you move onto the next step. Otherwise you’ll be prompted to verify your entry is valid to fix any mistakes and try again.

Vacation Mail Hold – Address Verify Available
Don’t worry if the address does not check the first time. Simple typos, versions, or abbreviations of your mailing address may not match up with the official record. As long as you have a post office in the United States of America that delivers your mail, your mail can be held for up to 30 days.

Vacation Mail Hold Address Verification Failed
Check Your Postal Address Entry and Try Again if Failed to Find a Match

Step 3 – Hold Dates and Delivery Options
After you pass the address check, the fields in the “When will we hold your mail?” will become enabled. Here is where you will enter the start date and the end date for your when you’ll be away from home. Remember that you can only hold mail for a minimum of 3 days to a maximum of 30 days.

Vacation Mail Hold Dates and Delivery
Next second part is to select an option from the delivery option drop down list. You can choose either “Carrier delivers accumulated mail” or “I will pick up accumulated mail.” The first option is to have all your held mail be delivered to your home mailbox on the end date. The second option is to tell the post office that you’ll come in person as of the end date to pick up the mail in person. Regardless of which option you choose, your normal mail delivery will result as of the end date.

Step 4 – Submit Hold Mail Request – You’re Done!
Before you click the “Submit” button double check to make sure your entries are correct. You wouldn’t want your mail held for the wrong dates or enter the wrong apartment number by mistake for example. There is an “Additional ​Instructions” button if you have anything to add, but I honestly have no idea what this field is meant to handle. When you are ready and have read the important legal disclaimer at the bottom, click the submit button and await the success response.

After your mail hold request is processed electronically, you’ll receive a confirmation email and also a letter in the mail detailing your hold request. I think the letter is meant as a security precaution in case someone else tries to put your mail on hold on purpose or by mistake. If you see any mistakes after the fact, you can either cancel a mail hold or use the phone or in-person options to talk to a real person who can make it right.

Scott’s Advice on Vacation Mail
Mail Hold Timing
Based on my own past experience I recommend that you put in a mail hold order at least 1 week in advance. You can schedule the service up to 30 days in advance according to the FAQ page when you enter the “hold mail” search term. This seems to allow enough time for the electronic request to be routed and handled manually by the hard-working people at your local branch.

If you forgot and have to submit this request at the last-minute, I suggest that instead you visit the post office in person. Preferably go to the physical branch that delivers mail to your home and not necessarily the one closest to work or co-located in a supermarket for example. That way you can complete and hand in the paper version (usually yellow or white in color) of this form and talk to someone to make sure it is processed in time for your travels.

Buy Travel Insurance
You don’t need travel insurance for most road trips and weekend getaways. However for a vacation involving a flight or to a foreign country or expensive/luxury destination, travel insurance is worth buying. My advice is to shop around for the best price. Resist automatically buying trip protection from your travel agent or cruise booking agency as they have often have a profit motive when selling it.

My research suggests that you it will be cheaper and you’ll have greater coverage options if you buy travel cancellation, interruption, lost luggage, or medical evacuation coverage directly with a reputable insurance company. Personally I recommend purchasing an annual individual or family policy if you take several trips a year. That type of plan will save you time and money while covering all your vacations.

Mail Hold Resume
Try to be at home on this date and not just coming home or heading back to work since the packet of held mail may not fit in your mailbox (the main point for putting it on hold in the first place). Based on whether you have a house or apartment and the general security in the area, you may decide it is smartest to always pick up the accumulated mail in person. That avoids the risk of having it left on your doorstep or overflowing from an unlocked mailbox on the curb. Also consider if it’s possible that you’ll return a day or two late from vacation due to unforeseen circumstances.


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Holding Mail for More Than 30 Days?
I wish the post office would hold mail for more than 30 days, but clearly they don’t want to take on the burden of safely storing your mail for free forever. That’s where Premium Forwarding Service comes into the picture. Collected and held mail can be sent weekly to your temporary address, for a fee of course. Read the FAQ section of the USPS website or create or sign in to your account to find out more. It is a bit more complicated than mail hold as the options and costs will vary.

Premium Mail Forwarding Service
Click to read more about Premium Forwarding Service, from the U.S. Post Office
Have you tried it out? I haven’t so I would be very much interested in learning more. Add a comment below if you can tell VacationCounts readers about your experience with this long-term mail forwarding option.

Alternatives to Vacation Mail Hold
Holding my mail is often a regular part of my vacation plans, but I’ve taken mail management one step further. I wish all mail was electronic so I’ve turned on paperless statements and e-billing for every account in my name. I can’t get rid of all my paper mail, but there are ways to manage physical mail electronically.


How to Contact the U.S. Post Office
Remember that you are learning about your options for holding mail on the website. This is NOT the official source of information and this information is provided without guarantee or warranty. I have to include a legal disclaimer so there is no confusion. When you need to deal with your U.S. mail, you have to contact the only government agency responsible – regardless of rain or sleet or snow… 😉

By Phone at: 800-ASK-USPS (275-8777)
By Email using Official Contact Form
Also be aware of when post offices are closed during federal holidays and other times. Here is the list of 2016 holidays when branches are closed.

As a reminder, here is the link to the official site to hold your mail while traveling, away from home, or on vacation. Click the button below to open in a new window and submit a new mail hold authorization, cancel an existing, or learn more.

Spread Holiday Cheer By Helping Santa

The Postal Administration started getting letters to Santa Clause Claus over 100 years prior. In the good ‘ol days the mail was replied by volunteer postal workers who composed back to the youngsters with a note or card. After a seemingly endless amount of time the measure of letters kept in touch with Santa Clause kept on developing making reacting to each letter to a greater degree a test. Mail routed to Santa Clause developed to such an extent that in 1912, then Postmaster General Straight to the point Hitchcock approved neighborhood Postmasters to permit subjects to react to letters in the program that got to be distinctly known as Operation Santa.Over the decades, the Operation Santa Clause program has gone up against its very own existence. Today, numerous urban communities around the nation have tremendously fruitful projects that work with perceived beneficent associations, significant organizations, nearby organizations and people to have any kind of effect in the lives of youngsters from drift to coast.What We DoCurrently, there are Operation Santa Clause programs all around the nation that shift as much as the areas themselves. Most letters are still discreetly replied by our own particular representatives who react with a painstakingly created letter as though penned by Santa Clause himself. Other Post Workplaces work with neighborhood schools to compose letters back to the youngsters, still others work with set up gatherings and help with the accumulation of presents, while others welcome people in general to peruse and react to Santa Clause’s mail.New York City’s Operation Santa Clause program is the biggest in the nation and gets more than a half-million letters every year. All through the season, the notable James A. Farley Expanding on eighth Road has a large number of mystery Santas who visit the Mail station face to face to peruse and receive letters. To authoritatively open the program they have an Operation Santa Clause Commence which this year will occur on Dec. 2 at 11 a.m. So on the off chance that you happen to be in New York on that day please go along with us, it’s interested in people in general and dependably a cheerful event.Did You Know• A huge number of kids’ letters have been replied since the program’s commencement, more than a hundred years ago.• A year ago, a huge number of letters were replied by Mystery Santa Clause’s at Operation Santa Clause in New York City, while numerous more thousand were replied at Operation Santa Clause destinations over the country.Get InvolvedThe Postal Administration puts stock in securing youngsters’ protection and has an approach for “receiving” letters routed to Santa Clause. All locations and individual data are redacted before the letters are given to people in general. Letters are then doled out a number and made accessible for open viewing.Customers who might want to peruse and embrace letters are made a request to do as such face to face, exhibit legitimate photograph recognizable proof and round out a shape that we continue petition for one year. We additionally keep an automated rundown of all who have perused and embraced letters for the security of all who keep in touch with Santa Clause. After this is legitimate U.S. Mail, and is dealt with accordingly regardless of the possibility that it’s routed to Santa.Secret Santas may react in composing or really satisfy the youngster’s desires with a present; it’s totally up to the Santa Clause! However every reaction (letter or blessing) must be come back to a similar Mail station and the postage must be paid to mail the reaction back to the kid. A Postal Administration worker will coordinate the number on the letter with the youngster’s address from our Operation Santa Clause database, apply a name and send the bundle to its last destination.It’s a volunteer program so not all Post Workplaces take an interest in Operation Santa Clause and areas change year to year. Amid occasion time check to see an entire posting of the Operation Santa Clause areas open to the public.Happy Holidays!#OPSanta

Tracking package using tracking number in USPS

United States

Put a mail on hold while you are on vacation

Holiday Shipping For Domestic, International and Military Mail

Americans send more mail around the holidays than at any other time of the year. Whether you’re sending a Christmas card, mailing a holiday gift, or shipping a care package to a loved one serving in the military, it’s important that your package arrives on time. That’s why the U.S. Postal Service works extra hard to ensure timely delivery of your holiday mail. To help you avoid delays during this very special and busy time, here are USPS’s recommended shipping deadlines for the 2015 holiday season:Domestic Mail Deadlines – December 2015If you’re sending holiday mail within the United States or to U.S. territories, aim to ship your packages by the dates below.Get additional details on the U.S. Postal Service’s mailing and shipping services.International Mail Deadlines – December 2015Consult the chart below to find recommended mail-by dates for international regions. Remember, when mailing and shipping to international addresses, you must also follow necessary customs guidelines.International Mail Deadlines chart – Dec. 2015Military Mail Deadlines – December 2015Follow the guidelines below to know when to mail Christmas packages to loved ones serving in the armed services.How to Get USPS Discounts on Military MailTo support our men and women in the armed services, USPS offers a $2 per box postage discount on its largest Priority Mail Flat Rate box at $15.90 for mail sent to APO/FPO/DPO addresses around the globe.Priority Mail Flat Rate boxes are available at no cost at local Post Offices and online. And with Click-N-Ship, you can print postage, shipping labels and customs forms anytime from your computer.How to Use Military Care Kits to Send Gifts OverseasThe Postal Service has created a free Military Care Kit based on the items most frequently requested by military families. The kit contains:■Two Priority Mail APO/FPO/DPO flat rate boxes■Two Priority Mail Medium flat rate boxes■Priority Mail tape■Priority Mail address labels■Appropriate customs formsTo order the kit, call 800-610-8734. You can also order flat-rate boxes featuring the “America Supports You” logo at the USPS online store.How to Address Military Mail and PackagesWondering how to address military mail to your friend or loved one serving in the armed forces? Follow these steps for addressing military mail to make sure your parcel arrives on time.1. Print the service member’s full name in the address field.2. Include the unit and APO/FPO/DPO address with the 9-digit ZIP code (if one is assigned). For example: Army/Air Post Office (APO)PFC JOHN DOEPSC 3 BOX 4120APO AE 09021 Fleet Post Office (FPO)SEAMAN JOSEPH SMITHUNIT 100100 BOX 4120FPO AP 96691 Diplomatic Post Office (DPO)JOHN ADAMSUNIT 8400 BOX 0000DPO AE 09498-0048 3. Do not write the country name where the service member is stationed in the address field4. Remember to write a return address in appropriate field.5. Include the service member’s name and address and the sender’s name and address on an index card inside the package, in case the shipping label gets damaged in transit.These Christmas shipping deadlines and tips can help de-stress your holiday gift giving – so you can concentrate on what’s truly important. Happy Holidays from the U.S. Postal Service!

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Postal Service Prepares For Holiday Shipping

Postal Service Gears Up for Holiday Shipping SeasonThe U.S. Postal Service® is ready to deliver a lot of cheer this holiday season in the form of more than 16 billion cards, letters and packages.“We have planned for this peak volume season all year. Customers can count on the Postal Service® and our more than 600,000 dedicated employees to deliver their holiday gifts, cards and letters,” said Megan J. Brennan, Postmaster General and CEO. “We have invested in our infrastructure. We’ve added package sortation equipment, new delivery vehicles and scanning equipment to expand capacity, improve operating efficiency, keep our processing plants fluid and to provide real-time visibility.”Additionally, the Postal Service is hiring up to 40,000 seasonal employees to help process and deliver increased volumes and meet the needs of its customers. Following the success of the past two holiday seasons, the Postal Service will again deliver packages seven days a week in select major cities and high-volume areas beginning Nov. 27. More than five million packages are expected to be delivered each Sunday in December.Holiday Mail: Busiest Mailing and Delivery DaysThe Postal Service predicts that Monday, Dec. 19, will be the busiest mailing and shipping day for holiday packages, letters and cards. Thursday, Dec. 22, is expected to be the busiest delivery day for holiday packages, cards and letters. The Postal Service anticipates that more than 30 million packages will be delivered on the peak delivery day alone.Whether sending sweets to a child in Big Rock Candy Mountain, VT, fresh fruit to a business acquaintance in Orange, CA, or a poetry book to a pen pal in Limerick, Me, the Postal Service offers these added tips:Priority Mail™ supplies: Order free Priority Mail shipping supplies, including seasonally decorated Flat Rate boxes, and have them delivered free of charge when ordered at The Postal Store on well: Select a box that is strong enough to protect the contents, including a full range of sizes of Priority Mail and Priority Express boxes that are free at the local post office. Leave space for cushioning inside. Stuff glass and fragile, hollow items, like vases, with packing material to avoid damage. When mailing framed photographs, take the glass out of the frame and wrap it separately.Track it: Sign up for text and email alerts through to track the delivery status of your packages.Delivery Instructions: No one home on expected delivery days? Use your free account to provide delivery instructions for packages with tracking numbers.
Skip the Trip and Ship OnlineIt’s a hectic time but let the visions of sugar plums — possibly from Plum Island MA — dance in your head while looking for gifts and ways to ship them.With about 16 billion pieces of mail, including 750 million packages, anticipated for the holiday season, Dec. 19 is expected to be the Postal Service’s busiest day online with more than 7 million customers predicted to visit that day alone. Customers can avoid holiday hassles by visiting the Postal Service’s website that will help make mailing and shipping easier than ever.Millions of customers will skip the trip to the Post Office™ altogether and take advantage of convenient online holiday shipping this season. and other online services allow customers to order free Priority Mail boxes, print shipping labels, purchase postage and even request free next-day Package Pickup.Customers can also shop online at the Postal Store® for festive stamps to complement their holiday cards and letters and philatelic gift ideas. Many holiday cards and stamps are also available at local USPS® retail offices.

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