The Coronavirus pandemic has undoubtedly changed the way we work and live.
Businesses have had to adapt to more employees working remotely. In life, we have had to adapt to lockdowns, the closure of services, and restrictions when it comes to being around others.
The fact COVID-19 has impacted nearly every facet of our lives means that even the smallest of details, such as sending and receiving physical mail has had to change.
Mail services were severely disrupted in the U.S (and across the world for that matter) as the pandemic spread through the population.
Deliveries were delayed and just getting to the post office was restricted during times of lockdown. Even when we could move more freely again, a visit to the post office was best avoided due to the risk of contracting the virus in a public place.
However, a solution to a lot of these concerns can be found through the use of a virtual mailbox service.
Today, we will look at how such a service can help you in the midst of a pandemic, both COVID-19 and whatever we might face in the future.
Let’s take a look.
What Is a Virtual Mailbox?
We have talked extensively elsewhere on Mailbox Master about what a virtual mailbox service is and how it can benefit you. So we’ll discuss it here in summary.
Essentially, a virtual mailbox is a way of managing all your mail remotely. You have access to a physical address based in the U.S. (or whenever the service is located) and you use this as a location for your mail to be sent.
The service provider receives the mail on your behalf, scans it, and makes the image available for you to view on your computer or cellphone.
As the mailbox owner, you can then request what should be done with the mail. Options include, opening, storing, shredding, or forwarding to a new address.
From this description alone, you can see how a virtual mailbox can benefit you during a pandemic. For one, you are not coming into physical contact with your mail.
5 Ways a Virtual Mailbox Can Help During a Pandemic
Here are 5 ways using a virtual mailbox could help limit your exposure during the Coronavirus pandemic.
1. Helps you to avoid the Post Office
First and foremost, using a virtual mailbox means you can reduce trips to the post office. During the various lockdowns, this was highly beneficial.
However, even during times of lesser restrictions, COVID infection numbers have remained high.
Being able to view your mail safely online while in the safety of your own home is a major benefit during the pandemic.
2. Reduce your exposure by eradicating physical mail
Virtual mailboxes allow you to view electronic copies of your mail by way of scanned images.
This means you will only come into contact with the mail that you request be forwarded to your residential address.
This in turn means you are reducing your exposure to physical mail where the surface of the package could put you at risk.
3. Receive mail wherever you are
Research has found that up to 22% of Americans have moved because of COVID-19. Furthermore, around 57% of employees now have the option to work from home.
This has seen a massive shift in the way people live and work, and where they are doing so.
With the population on the move like this, virtual mailboxes can be used to great effect in order to ensure mail reaches the recipient without issues.
A virtual mailbox service allows users to receive their mail at a professionally staffed location. It doesn’t matter where you are currently based due to the pandemic, you can carry on receiving your mail regardless.
4. Deposit Checks without going to the bank
This is another great benefit that helps to reduce your exposure to the virus. Many services offer to check deposit services. Have your checks sent to your virtual address managed by the service provider. For a small fee, they will deposit the check on your behalf.
This eradicates the need to be in a busy public bank to take care of your checks.
5. Forward Mail & Packages while your employees work from home
If you are a business and you have employees working from home, a virtual mailbox service will help keep the flow of packages and physical mail from place to place.
Both employers and employees can forward mail to any domestic and international location using the service as a provider and as a method for sending the items to their final location.
Some virtual mailbox companies will also provide signature services so that you do not suffer any disruption. So you as you can see, virtual mailbox services can benefit businesses too, during the pandemic.
And there you have it, 5 good reasons to use a virtual mailbox service during a pandemic. The main takeaway is that using a service where you can manage your mail remotely, means you are reducing the risk of exposure for you, your family, and your employees.
I’m a 25 year veteran of USPS. I’m retired now, but as the editor of Mailbox Master, I can’t quite remove myself from the carrier industry just yet. 🙂