10 Different Transports That Have Carried the Mail

Although we may refer to it as ‘snail mail’ when comparing it to electronic mail, standard mail delivery moves at lightning speed compared to the time it used to take to send a letter or package by the postal service in the past. The US Postal Service has used every means necessary to provide delivery of communications across this country since it began operations.

  1. Steamboats – In the 1800’s steamboats became the fastest mode of transportation on the water. Although mail had already been carried in boats and on rafts, steamboats provided a much faster delivery. Mail could be delivered between New York and California, via the Panama Canal in four weeks or less using steamboat delivery.
  1. Pony Express – Pony Express riders and their speedy horses are legendary for their part in mail delivery in the west. However, pack mules carried plenty of mail bags themselves, though not as quickly.
  1. Railroad – The railroad has played a large role in mail delivery throughout its history. In its early years of mail delivery, the postal service actually sorted mail in railroad cars while they were en route.
  1. Automobiles – Cars and trucks continue to delivery mail between cities and along rural routes. In the early years of automobiles, both electric and gasoline powered automobiles were used by mail carriers.
  1. Airplanes – Mail being transported through the air is common today, but in its beginnings it was considered quite unique, and certainly more expensive, to send a letter by Air Mail. The first regular pilots for mail delivery were Army pilots flying training missions.
  1. Motorcycles – The use of motorcycles for rural mail delivery is not as well-known as some of the other forms of transportation, but they formed an important part of the transportation system, particularly following World War I. Sidecars were often utilized to assist with larger loads.
  1. Pneumatic Tubes – You may be assuming that the use of pneumatic tubes for mail delivery was a Twentieth Century idea. It was not. Pneumatic tube delivery of mail began in the 1890’s in Philadelphia, New York and Chicago. The tubes ran underground from one mail station to another within the cities. Tube carriers looked vary similar to the cylindrical carriers used at your bank’s drive-up service. The cost of the service prevented it from continuing.
  1. Missiles – They tried it, but it didn’t work very well. In 1959 the use of guided missiles for mail delivery was experimented with. After a crash landing and an accounting of costs, the idea was discarded.
  1. Stagecoach – Not all of the mail in the west was carried by lone riders on horseback. The regular routes of stagecoaches made them a natural choice for mail delivery as well.
  1. People – The individual mail carrier has been a part of mail delivery longer than any other mode of transportation. Human feet are still the best delivery system to city homes.

Hopefully, you learned a few things about US Postal delivery systems that you did not know. Some of them were sure to have been new to you.

10 Ways to Send and Track a Package

We’ve all had to ship a package at one time or another and we need to be able to track it in case it doesn’t arrive on time. There are several different options available to ship packages with varying degrees of tracking capabilities. Here are 10 different options for you to consider when you need to send and track a package.

  1. Fedex – “When it absolutely, positively has to be there overnight” was the Fedex slogan from 1978 to 1983. With Fedex you can send a package anywhere in the world with excellent tracking capabilities.
  2. UPS – The United Parcel Service is another worldwide package delivery company. UPS is usually the first option you think of when you need to send a package. They also have a great system to keep track of your package after it ships.
  3. DHL – Based in Bohn Germany, DHL also delivers packages around the world and anywhere in the U.S. Starting out just delivering between San Francisco and Honolulu, they’ve now expanded their delivery service to countries not served by other companies.
  4. TNT – Starting with one truck in Australia, TNT now delivers worldwide to over 200 countries. They have a variety of options for sending and tracking your special package.
  5. Purolator – Another choice you have for shipping packages within Canada, the United States or worldwide is Purolator. They’re based in Canada but have shipping locations all over the U.S. as well.
  6. Spee-Dee – This delivery service ships packages all over the upper Midwest and is often sub-contracted by larger companies for rural deliveries. If you live in the Spee-Dee area, they may be a good bargain for shipping packages locally.
  7. USPS – Of course you can send and track a package through the United States Postal Service. They have several options such as flat rate boxes, express mail, certified mail and return receipt with each option having different tracking capabilities.
  8. PackTrack.com – This online service gives you the option of tracking packages shipped by UPS, Fedex or DHL. It’s free and quick, saving you time at one simple website.
  9. ParcelsPackages.com – You can compare rates of the major international package delivery companies at this website. With so many options available, it’s confusing and time consuming trying to find the best rate, so this can be a great tool.
  10. Local Courier – If you just need to get your package delivered across town, you may want to use a local courier service. They will usually pick up and deliver the same day, but you want to make sure they provide track and trace service.

The option you choose to send your package depends on where it’s going and when it needs to get there. Each company has different levels of reliability and rates especially if you’re shipping your parcel internationally. You want to compare rates, but sometimes it’s worth it to pay a little more to get reliable service. Convenience is another consideration when making your choice, so you need to know what companies service your area. Whatever you choose, make sure to get that tracking number.

40 People or Organizations to Notify About Your Change of Address

If you moved recently (we will assume that is why you are reading this article), then we want to give you a really quick list of people, places, organizations, or institutions that you need to notify about your new address. Since we know you are busy we will get right to it:

GOVERNMENT – There are several governmental agencies at the local, state, and federal level that need to have your current address.

  • The post office (the easiest way to do that is right here).
  • The internal revenue service (find out more here).
  • The department of motor vehicles (DMV find out more here).
  • The department of Veterans Affairs.
  • If you are not a citizen and in the country on a visa then the USCIS.
  • You should notify the Social Security Administration.
  • Update your passport
  • Social Services/Family Support as needed
  • The unemployment office if you are drawing benefits from them
  • Voter registration

UTILITIES – You usually need to contact utility companies to both disconnect and turn on services and the old and new addresses respectively.

  • The electric company
  • The cable company
  • The telephone company
  • Your mobile phone carrier
  • High speed Internet provider
  • Garbage pickup/disposal
  • Your water company
  • Your gas company
  • Your lawn/garden/fertilizing company
  • Your maid service
  • Your propane provider if you have a propane tank
  • Your pool service
  • Your bottled water delivery service

PERSONAL – There are usually a bunch of personal doctors, dentists, and other professionals that you need to notify of your new address as well.

  • Your bank
  • Your lawyer
  • Your family doctors
  • Your credit card companies
  • Any department stores you have a credit card for (JCPenney, etc.)
  • You air miles company
  • Your gym
  • Your children’s schools
  • Your insurance agency
  • Your veterinarian
  • Your accountant
  • Your church

SUBSCRIPTIONS – There are some products, services, and catalogs that we have delivered on a regular basis that need a corrected address including:

  • Your newspaper
  • Any magazines you subscribe to
  • Any specialty clubs (dollar shave club, harrys, etc.)
  • Store catalogs that you want to keep receiving
  • Any book, music, or movie clubs

This isn’t meant to be an all-inclusive list, but it should provide a solid start and will most likely trigger you to remember other people and organizations that you need to tell about your new address.  Of course, we didn’t forget that you should notify your friends and family.

Ranking the States | Number of Post Office Locations & Mailing Centers

Have you ever wondered which state has more post offices and mailing locations (this includes mailing offices not operated by the USPS)? It’s probably not too surprising that it is one of the larger states (sorry Alaska), it’s Texas. Here are all of the details:

Ranking the 50 States by Number of Post Offices

Can You Name the Nickname for Each of the 50 States?

For some reasons it seems that Idaho is associated with potatoes and Iowa with corn but neither of those are in the respective state nicknames. How many nicknames can you name without looking at the table below?

Nicknames for the 50 States

3 Reasons Why People Forget to Change Their Address

Over the years we have seen that it is very common for people to request same day changes to their USPS postal delivery (which is far from guaranteed to work).  After a lot of research we were able to determine that people often wait until after they have moved to change their address with the post office. Here are a few of the reasons why we believe this is happening:

  • Moving is extremely stressful and hectic.  Between coordinating movers and switching all of your utilities (electricity, gas, water, phone, cable, etc.) there is just a lot to be done and some things like changing your address with the post office just tend to fall through the cracks.  Likely, because we aren’t as dependent on mail as we used to be.
  • That brings us to our second reason which is technology and the way we communicate has been changing very rapidly.  We get a lot less mail and a lot more email, tweets, SMS messages, and other form of communication.  Because we are becoming less and less dependent on mail we expect to see these statistics continuing to increase.
  • Electronic billing and payments in general have become far more common.  We just don’t get a lot of mail outside of advertisements nowadays.  This causes us to check our mail maybe once a week or even once a month.  Again, neither of these are recommended it’s just what can end up happening because we are no longer waiting for a check to arrive or for our bill to arrive via mail to make sure we get it paid on time.

There are many other reasons why people forget to change their address but these are three common reasons.  As you can see from reading these we expect this will continue to be an issue in the coming months and years as we move further and further away from using the USPS as a vital part of our communications with each other and the organizations we belong to or work for.

How to File Your USPS Change of Address Form 3575

Once you have your form 3575 from us here at Change of Address Form (COAF), the question is what do you do with it?  The answer is incredibly simple.  You can simply put it in an envelope, put a stamp on it, and use the following address:

United States Postal Service

That’s it!  Another option would be to give it to your local postal carrier or take it directly to your local post office.  All of these are simple options and outside of possibly the cost of a stamp, they are totally free.

The final option would be to use our express service and we will take care of everything for you! It’s super easy and if you use our network of home service providers for any needs you already have, it’s still free! To start a change of address with us, just go here.

As always, if you have any questions please feel free to contact us at postmaster@changeofaddressform.com.  Thank you again for visiting and using ChangeOfAddressForm.com!

Changing Your Address With the USPS Should Be FREE

At Change of Address Form (COAF) we believe very strongly that consumers should not have to pay to change their address.  Why do we believe that?  Because the USPS doesn’t charge you for the service at all if you file manually.  If you file with the USPS online there is a nominal charge but not if you print, complete, and deliver a USPS FORM 3575 to your local carrier or straight to your local post office.  This is just way too easy for all of us to do and with just the slightest bit of effort, in mere minutes, you can file your change of address completely free of charge.

Another reason why changing your address should be free is that not every change of address is associated with a move (which is every 7 years on average in the U.S. and occurring more frequently with every survey).  Let’s say you are going on vacation for 1 or 2 weeks and you don’t want your mail to pile up… You can simply come to COAF and fill out a temporary change of address form and your mail will be held by the post office until you return.  It is that simple and there is no need to bother your neighbors or family members with the task of collecting your mail for you.

There are scads of sites online that will charge you up to $39.95 to change your address!  That is completely unnecessary and you should avoid those sites at all costs.  We recommend that you simply use our free service OR if you want to pay then please go straight to the USPS website and pay them to change your address.  It will cost you significantly less than competitive sites out there that are looking to charge you a very hefty convenience fee.

Some examples of sites that charge you include updater.com, changemypostaladdress.com, mymove.com, and several of these sites have had lots of complaints from customers (rightfully so).  Here at COAF we are committed to keeping our service free of charge and would rather close down than charge for something that in our opinion should be free.