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Post Office Mail Hold
  • One of the most useful services offered by the United States Post Office is a mail hold. That service allows you to have your local postal branch keep your mail for you while your family isn’t home.

    Convenience and Security

    A Post Office mail hold is a convenient way to keep your mail safe while you are away. You can use the service whenever you go on vacations, business trips, or have to leave your home for other reasons. That way your mail will be conveniently held until you get back. Some reasons to have your mail held include:

    - It will keep your mail safe in case there’s bad weather.

    - It will keep your mail box from getting full.

    - It will prevent anyone from stealing your mail while you are away.

    Of course, the security of your home is also a concern. If people notice that your mail box is getting full, they may assume that nobody is home. So, they could try to rob your house. By having your mail held, you can prevent that tell-tale sign that you are away.


    How a Post Office Mail Hold Works

    A Post Office mail hold is fairly simple. All you have to do is fill out a form, which you can get at a local branch or online. You simply need to fill out the form with the date that you are leaving and the date that you are returning. You can do that well ahead of time, or you can do it online by 2:00 in the morning on the day that you want the hold to start. It’s better to do it at least a few days ahead, though.

    When you have your mail held, that will include the mail for your entire household. You don’t need to fill out a form for each family member. When you return, you will be able to pick up your mail at your local Post Office branch or have it delivered to your house. You can select which option you prefer when you fill out the mail hold form.


    Mail Hold Times

    The shortest amount of time that you can have your mail held is 3 days. The longest amount of time is 30 days. If you are going to only be gone for a day or two, you will need to either have a neighbor get your mail or allow it to accumulate for that short time.

    If you are going to be gone for longer than 30 days, you should select the Post Office’s Premium Forwarding Service, instead. The Premium Forwarding Service will ensure that your mail is delivered to your temporary address. However, mail will only be delivered to that address in batches once per week. For more information about Post Office mail holds, visit


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