For those gypsies or travelers who no longer have a “home base” getting physical mail can be a challenge.
Sure, you can tell the post office to put your mail on hold. You could get a simple P.O. box. You can even have friends or family receive your mail on your behalf. But these are temporary solutions to a common gypsy problem.
How do you get 24/7 access to your physical mail when you don’t have a permanent address?
The solution is something known as a “Virtual Mailbox”. Whether you’re away for a simple vacation or you’re traveling long-term, a virtual mailbox provides a physical address that doesn’t change no matter where you are.
Unlike traditional mailbox or even a P.O. box, a virtual mailbox doesn’t require you to go and collect your mail in person. Instead, the virtual box will receive your mail and give you an alert either via email or on your phone. A scan of the box or envelope will show you what was received.
At this point, you have the option to:
• Ask the virtual mailbox service to open your mail and scan it;
• Ask the company to forward the mail to wherever you are;
• Tell them to shred and delete the mail
Josh Summers from TravelChinaCheaper accurately describes it as a virtual solution to your mail while traveling. Check your mail from anywhere in the world, at any time of day! Some services even offer the ability to receive a fax, deposit a check and send out a letter on your behalf.
Six reasons Gypsies Should Use a Virtual Mailbox
Although it may seem bold to say that every “nomad” or “location-independent” gypsy needs a virtual mailbox, consider these six reason to give it a try.
1. Receive Mail from Anywhere in the World
With just an Internet connection, computer, or a smartphone, you get access to open, view, and read any piece of mail from anywhere in the world.
You can download the letters, sort them digitally and respond to them quickly. This will help you keep record of bills and other documents (including important tax documents!) when away from “home”.
2. To Ensure Nothing Gets Lost
Your friends and family might forget to pass on an important piece of mail. Or heaven forbid they lose it!
Or maybe you just don’t want your package left on a random porch to be stolen.
Either way, there’s a risk to letting somebody else handle your mail while you’re away.
Sending your mail and packages to a virtual address ensures that everything gets hand-delivered and signed for, decreasing the chance of something being stolen or lost.
3. Digitize Your Documents
If you keep all your important documents on your hard drive or in the cloud, then a virtual mailbox service is for you.
While a virtual mailbox will scan your incoming mails, you will be able to download them as PDF files to store them on your computer or in the cloud. Some mailbox services also offer a direct connection to cloud storage and other organization tools like Dropbox or Evernote.
4. Keep the Same Address Wherever You Go
If you are always on the go, it’s challenging to keep updating friends and family with a new address. Even if you use mail forwarding, the post office will only forward to your new address for a short period of time.
In contrast, a virtual mailbox address allows you to keep the same address no matter where you travel. It’s like an email address – people know exactly how to reach you, even if they don’t know exactly where you are located.
One address, no matter where you move.
5. Say Goodbye to Junk Mail!
Don’t you just hate when you go to pick your mail from after a long vacation and find that most of it is just junk?
This is not with virtual mailboxes.
Most of the virtual mailbox services filter the junk mail and will only notify about the incoming mail that is directly for you. They will filter out mail the unnecessary mail such as promotions, advertisements, flyers, and more.
6. You Can Shred The Mails Not Forwarded:
Most virtual mailbox providers will shred your personal mail, giving added security to your mail. Once you’ve downloaded the PDF, safely shred the physical mail and delete it from the digital mailbox..
Are you using a virtual mailbox to handle your physical mail? If so, what has been your experience with this service?
We are happy to present this collaborative post to offer valuable information to our readers.