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December 2023

Setup PO Box In December 2023

This in-depth article will examine the procedure for establishing a PO Box in the United Kingdom. We will discuss the advantages of having a PO Box, the steps required to select one, and potential alternatives. 

Based on our research, we will provide detailed information on selecting the appropriate size, the types of mail that can be sent to a PO Box, and the various terms associated with setting up a PO Box.

Topics that you will find covered on this page

You can listen to an audio recording of this page below.

What Is a Post Office Box?

A PO Box, or Post Office Box, is a private mailing address provided by postal services such as Royal Mail. Individuals and businesses can receive mail at a PO Box address separate from their physical or residential address. 

PO Boxes have been used for over a century in the United Kingdom and are widely accessible through Royal Mail and other postal service providers.

Benefits of Setting Up a PO Box

According to our findings, the primary advantages of establishing a PO Box are as follows:


A PO Box lets you conceal your residence’s address and avoid unwanted visitors.


The security of PO Boxes protects your mail from theft, damage, and tampering.


Accessing a PO Box can be easier and more convenient than collecting mail from a shared residence or sorting office.


Using a PO Box for business correspondence provides a more professional appearance, particularly for home-based enterprises.


It may be easier to access a PO Box than your local post office, allowing you to collect mail at your convenience.

Steps to Set Up a PO Box

Research Your Local Post Office Options

Research the local post offices that offer PO Box services to get started. Most PO Boxes are provided by Royal Mail, but some independent postal services also offer comparable services. 

Visit their respective websites to compare prices, locations, and availability of PO Boxes.

Gather Necessary Documents

To open a PO Box, you must provide proof of identity and a UK address. A valid passport or driver’s licence are acceptable forms of identification, while a recent utility bill or bank statement can serve as proof of address.

Fill Out the Appropriate Application Form

Visit the Royal Mail website to download and fill out the PO Box application form. Make sure that all information is accurate and current.

Pay the Appropriate Fees and Submit Your Application

According to our research, the cost of a PO Box varies based on its duration and location. You can pay the required fees with a credit card, debit card, or direct debit. Submit your completed form online or at your local post office in person.

How to Manage Your PO Box

After establishing your PO Box, it is essential to manage incoming mail effectively. Ensure all your mail is addressed correctly to your PO Box number, and use it for your mailing lists, online accounts, and business correspondence.

In addition, frequent visits to your PO Box to retrieve mail will prevent it from becoming cluttered or complete, which could cause delays or difficulties in accessing your mail.

Alternatives to Setting Up a PO Box

If a PO Box does not meet your needs, consider the following po box alternatives:

Virtual Mailbox Services

These online postal services offer a UK address where your mail is received, scanned, and electronically forwarded.

Address Service or Mail Forwarding Company

These businesses provide a physical address for receiving mail, which is then forwarded to the customer’s desired location.

Renting an Apartment or Home with a Physical Address

This option provides a physical street address for mail and package delivery.

Work or Business Address

Use your workplace or place of business as your mailing address.

setup po box in UK

Friend’s or Family Members’ Addresses

Use the mailing address of a friend or family member with their permission, ensuring that they are comfortable with this arrangement.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Having a PO Box

Based on our findings, having a PO Box has both advantages and disadvantages:

Benefits of Having a PO Box


A PO Box prevents disclosing your home address to unwelcome visitors or businesses.


The security of PO Boxes helps prevent mail theft and tampering.


A PO Box address conveys a more professional image, especially for home-based businesses and individuals who work from shared housing.

Disadvantages of Having a PO Box


Depending on the location of the PO Box, access hours may be restricted compared to a residential or commercial address.


Costs for PO Boxes can accumulate over a century over time, especially for longer rental terms or larger boxes.

Delivery Restrictions

Some courier services may not deliver to PO Boxes, and larger packages may not fit in smaller boxes.

Additional Considerations for Setting Up a PO Box

In our experience, there are several additional considerations to make when establishing a PO Box:

Postal Security

Ensure that the PO Box service you select has adequate security measures, such as CCTV monitoring and access control systems.

Accessibility and Delivery Times

Most PO Boxes provide convenient access hours, but these may be limited compared to a residential or commercial address. Consider the following when deciding on a PO Box service.

Choosing the Right Size for Your Needs

Our research indicates that PO Boxes are available in various sizes to accommodate varying mail volumes:

Smaller Sized Post Office Boxes

Appropriate for individuals and small businesses that receive standard mail and letters.

Medium-Sized Post Office Boxes

Ideal for those who receive a substantial amount of mail, including small packages.

Larger-Sized Post Office Boxes

They are designed for businesses with substantial mail volumes or those that accept larger package deliveries.

Types of Mail That Can Be Sent to a PO Box

Our analysis indicates that the following types of mail can be sent to a PO Box:

What Is a Post Office Box

Letters and Packets

Most PO Boxes can accept standard mail, such as letters, postcards, and small packages.

Parcels and Freight

Some can accommodate parcels and larger packages depending on the particular PO Box service and location.

Different Terms Associated With Setting Up a PO Box

In our experience, several terms are associated with establishing a PO Box. Some examples include:

PO Box Address

Senders use this number to direct mail to your PO Box.

PO Box Number

The number is assigned to your mailbox by the post office.

PO Box Transfer

The action of transferring mail to a new PO Box or street address.

PO Box Cost

The costs of renting a post office box may vary based on duration, size, and location.

PO Box Online

The online application process for establishing a PO Box on the Royal Mail website.In the United Kingdom, opening a PO Box is a straightforward process requiring research, collecting necessary documents, completing an application form, and paying the required fees. 

Individuals and businesses can benefit from a PO Box’s privacy, security, and professionalism. Before committing to this service, it is essential to consider the size of the box, its accessibility, and the types of mail. If a PO Box does not meet your needs, e virtual mailbox services, mail forwarding companies, or a different address.

How do I set up a local PO Box?

To set up a local PO Box, start by researching the locations of post offices and Royal Mail PO Boxes in the desired area. Apply online via the Royal Mail website or visit the post office of your choice once you’ve found a suitable location. 

Complete the application form and provide identity and UK address verification. After processing your application, you will receive a unique PO Box number and address, allowing you to collect mail from that location. Use a credit card or establish a direct debit to pay the required fees.

What do I need to set up my PO Box?

Gather the required documents, including proof of identity (passport or driving licence) and proof of a UK address, to open a PO Box (utility bill or bank statement). 

You will also need a credit card or direct debit information to pay the necessary fees, which vary based on the duration and size of the PO Box. Consider accessibility, mail volume, and location when selecting a PO Box service that meets your needs.

How do I put my to get a PO Box online?

Putting your PO Box online entails updating your mailing address with appropriate parties, such as online accounts, subscriptions, and business correspondence. When signing up for mailing lists or online services, provide your unique PO Box address. 

This ensures that all your mail is delivered to your PO Box and protects your privacy, particularly for home-based businesses and residents of shared housing.

Is it free to create a PO Box?

There are fees associated with PO Box services, so creating a PO Box will not be accessible. Pay the required fees using a credit card, direct payment card, or debit arrangement. 

The duration and size-based costs for PO Box services are available on the Royal Mail website and at your local post office. Pay the required fees using a credit card, ent.

Can I use a PO Box for international business correspondence?

Yes, PO Boxes can be utilised for international business communication. International businesses requiring a local presence in the UK or a secure and private mailing address find PO Box addresses particularly useful. 

Ensure that all your mail is addressed correctly with your unique PO Box number, as this will aid in delivering both domestic and international mail.

What is the difference between a Royal Mail’s PO Box and an independent postal service’s PO Box?

While Royal Mail provides the majority of PO Boxes in the United Kingdom, some independent postal services also offer PO Box services. The primary distinction between the two is the provider and the fees, locations, and additional services. 

When selecting a PO Box service, compare the options Royal Mail offers and independent postal services provide to determine which meets your needs best.

Can I receive parcels at my PO Box?

Depending on the size of your box and the specific PO Box service you have selected, you can receive packages at your PO Box. Most PO boxes and Boxes can accommodate larger packages and parcels. 

Before using a PO Box for parcel deliveries, it is essential to confirm the size restrictions and any delivery restrictions with the postal service that provides the PO Box.

What is the process for closing or changing my PO Box?

Contact your PO Box service provider and inform them of your intent to close or modify your PO Box. They will direct you through the necessary procedures, including providing a forwarding address for any mail still being sent to the previous PO Box. 

To avoid mail delivery issues, you must update your mailing address with all relevant parties, including banks, subscriptions, and online accounts.

Can I have a PO Box as my address?

Yes, a PO Box can serve as an address for most correspondence. Certain institutions, such as banks and government agencies, may require a physical street address or location for specific transactions or verification purposes. 

You may be required to provide a residential or business address in these instances.

Can I open a PO Box in a town I don’t live in?

Yes, you can open a PO Box in a city where you do not reside. This option may be helpful for international companies and individuals desiring regular mail delivery to a different location. 

When applying for a PO Box, you must still provide proof of identity and a UK address, regardless of where you live.

What are the restrictions on PO Box deliveries?

Some courier services may not deliver to P.O. Boxes, while others may place restrictions on the types of packages they accept.

Furthermore, hazardous materials and illegal substances cannot be sent to a PO Box. Before utilising your PO Box for mail or package delivery, familiarise yourself with applicable restrictions and limitations.

How do I collect mail from my PO Box?

Visit your PO Box during the specified access hours, depending on the post office or local delivery office. Visiting your PO Box frequently is essential to prevent clutter and ensure prompt mail delivery. 

Some mail delivery delivers mail directly to your street address or physical location. Consult your local post office for information about available services and fees.

Are there discounts or promotions for PO Box pricing?

Postal services occasionally offer discounts or promotions on PO Box pricing. Unlike shorter-term rentals, duration-based pricing, such as annual or semi-annual rates, may save costs

Investigating and comparing the available PO Box locations, prices, and promotions is essential to find the option that best meets your needs and budget.

Are there any limitations on the types of businesses that can use a PO Box?

A PO Box provides confidentiality, security, and professionalism to businesses and various industries. 

There are typically no restrictions on the kinds of companies that may utilise a PO Box. Before establishing a PO Box for your business, confirming that your drive has nailing address regulations is essential.

How can I upgrade or downgrade my PO Box size?

To increase or decrease your PO Box size, contact your service provider and discuss your needs. 

They will guide you through changing the size of your PO Box and advise you on the available options. Consider that fees may vary based on the box size you select.

How do I ensure my mail is correctly addressed mail delivered to my PO Box?

When signing up for mailing lists, online services, or business correspondence, provide your unique PO Box number and address to ensure your mail is addressed correctly. 

Inform your contacts, clients, and business partners of your PO Box and instruct them to use it for all future mailings. This will ensure that your mail is delivered to the correct location.

Can you share a PO Box with another person or business?

Sharing a PO Box can be cost-effective for individuals with low mail volumes or limited funds. Depending on the postal service’s policies, sharing a PO Box with another person or business may be possible. 

Contact your PO Box service provider to enquire about their specific shared PO Box policies and any additional fees or requirements.

Meet the author

Rob Atherton

Rob Atherton

Rob writes and edits the content produced by the rest of the team. He has a degree in History from Leeds University and has producing, reviewing and editing the site since 2016

Meet The Team

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the main advantages of using a Royal Mail PO Box in the United Kingdom?

A Royal Mail PO Box offers several significant benefits to individuals and businesses in the United Kingdom. First, it protects your privacy by separating your home or business address from your mailing address, preventing unwanted visitors and safeguarding your personal information. 

A PO Box enhances security by protecting your mail from theft, damage, and tampering in a secure location. Thirdly, using a PO Box conveys a professional image, especially for home-based businesses and individuals living in shared housing. 

Lastly, a PO Box provides convenience and flexibility by allowing you to collect your mail at your leisure, unrestricted by standard postal delivery times.

What types of businesses and individuals may find a PO Box especially useful?

Numerous businesses and individuals can benefit from a post office box. Home-based businesses, freelancers, and entrepreneurs can project a professional image using a PO Box for their business correspondence. 

Those residing in shared housing or concerned about privacy may use a PO Box to separate their mail from their neighbours. 

International businesses or individuals requiring a UK mailing address can also benefit from a PO Box, which ensures their mail is received and securely managed regardless of location.

Are there restrictions on the types of mail that can be sent to a PO Box?

Most PO Boxes can accept standard mail items, including letters, postcards, and small packages. Depending on the size of the PO Box and the particular postal service, there may be restrictions on parcel deliveries or larger containers. 

In addition, certain courier services may not deliver to PO Boxes and prohibited items, including hazardous materials and controlled substances, cannot be sent to a PO Box. 

To ensure efficient mail delivery, verifying the restrictions and limitations of your PO Box service provider is essential.

What other options are available for those who may not find a PO Box suitable?

Individuals and businesses seeking mailing solutions have several alternatives to PO Boxes. Virtual mailbox services provide a UK address where your mail is received, scanned, and electronically forwarded. 

Address services and mail forwarding businesses provide a physical address for receiving mail, which is then sent to the recipient’s desired location. Renting a house or flat with a physical address is another option for receiving mail and packages. 

You can also use your workplace or place of business as your mailing address or ask friends or family for permission to use their address. Consider privacy, security, and convenience when selecting the optimal alternative.

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