Written by Dyami Millarson
If one is staying abroad for a significant amount of time or if one wishes to send local mail in the UK and avoid the cost of international mail or if one wishes to have an anonymous address to operate from for your business or personal life, it might be convenient to set up a PO box in the UK. One way to do this for free is making use of UKPOSTBOX (click on the hyperlink to go to the website). I have to emphasise that the registration may be free when one wishes to get a free address, but making actual use of their service is not. UKPOSTBOX has good reviews on Trustpilot and so I decided to try their service.
There are free and paid addresses to choose from, but I have tried their free address service for setting up a PO box in London. It is not possible to visit the PO box that you has been assigned to you after registering, regardless of whether you paid for the address, but you can only choose to forward the physical mail to your address or you can let UKPOSTBOX scan it so you can read it online. You are charged for every mail that you either send or receive. I did not receive any letters on my free address, but I have paid for sending letters. The process for sending letters was as follows: I had to turn my letters into a single PDF so UKPOSTBOX could print them and then I had to top up my balance in order to be able to actually send the letters.
Furthermore, once you start making use of UKPOSTBOX, you have to inform people that if they wish to send you a physical letter, the address for receiving written letters is different from the address for receiving parcels. All the mail that you receive will be stored for up to 30 days, and so you have that amount of time to decide what to do with it in case you may later decide to forward it to your own address. For immigrants to the UK or expats, it may be important to note that setting up a PO box will not help with setting up a bank account in the UK, because when one wishes to set up a bank account in the UK, one usually needs to provide 2 proofs of address and that is not possible with a PO box, while one does not pay council tax for that and so on. Instead, I recommend setting up a UK bank account online in case providing proof of address is a problem. For this, please read my article about UK Bank Account Alternatives Without Proof of Address.