Find My Post Office
November 21, 2023
The United States Postal Service has 33,641 offices across the United States as of 2022. Among this number, 31,132 are post offices.
From these figures, you can imagine how challenging and time-consuming it can be to find a specific post office to handle your mail. If you have incoming mail but do not know which U.S. post office will deliver it, you may find the experience troublesome.
How do you figure out which post office handles your mail? Can you choose which post office will deliver your parcel? What options do you have aside from visiting the post office to send or pick up mail?
This article discusses how to find a post office location and how tracking can help locate your package. This article also discusses what you can do if you have missed or failed deliveries.
FindPostOffice.org offers an online search tool to help you find post offices near you. You can locate such offices by city or state or through geolocation to make your search more convenient.
Find USPS Locations
You can find U.S. Postal Service locations, such as post offices, using FindPostOffice.org’s online search tool or the official USPS website’s post office locator.
On the page to find locations in the USPS site, enter your city, state, or ZIP code under “Find a Location.” Afterward, choose “Post Office” under the drop-down section for location types and click “Search.”
Aside from post offices, there are other locations where you can access USPS services, including the following:
- Collection boxes
- Self-service kiosks
- USPS gopost
- Village Post Office
- Contract postal unit
- National retailer
What Do All These Services Mean?
The abovementioned USPS services are described as follows:
- Post office: This USPS location has a staff of postal service employees and window service hours. Many post offices have open, after-hour lobbies with P.O. box access and self-service kiosks.
- Collection box: This box is a freestanding mailbox and comes in the following forms:
- USPS blue box
- White mailboxes for prepaid Priority Mail Express items
- Lobby drop-off slots
- Office building mail chutes
- USPS gopost: This unit is a secured, automated, self-service parcel locker in convenient locations where you can ship or pick up packages.
- National retailer: This retailer is an Approved Postal Provider that offers mailing and shipping services and sells stamps.
- Self-service kiosk: This kiosk provides many of the services available at full-service post offices. Here, you can weigh packages, sell stamps, and print Priority Mail and Priority Mail Express shipping labels.
- Village Post Office (VPO): This location is within an existing business, like a library or store, and not a stand-alone building. VPOs sell a limited selection of postal products and services.
What Post Office Delivers My Mail?
If you live in a town with only one post office, you know that this office is likely handling your mail.
But if you live in a large city, there can be more than just one post office in the area. In this case, figuring out where your mail comes from or where to pick it up can be challenging.
The following sections explain how to determine what post office delivers your mail and how to track your parcel.
Your Mail Is (Almost) Always Delivered by the Post Office Closest to You
Most of the time, the post office responsible for handling your mail is closest to your street address. If your town or city has one post office, the letter carrier delivering your mail is likely from that office.
How to Find Local Post Offices
Suppose you are in a place with multiple post offices. One way to find your post office is to visit any of these places and ask a postal worker if they service your address.
If you want a more efficient way to find the nearest post office in the comfort of your home, go online and visit FindPostOffice.org or the office USPS website at USPS.com and use the post office search tool.
Contact USPS Directly
You can call USPS at 1-800-ASK-USPS (1-800-275-8777) to inquire about which post office delivers your mail.
You can also email USPS, but the response may take up to three business days. You do not need to write a long email, but you must include your complete mailing address.
Package Delivery and Tracking Information Is a Big Help
Another way to determine which post office is responsible for your mail is to check your package’s tracking information to see which post office is the last one to handle your parcel. Go to the USPS website’s tracking page and input the tracking number in the search box.
If you are the recipient, the last post office that sends your package to your location on the delivery date is usually the one that handles your mail locally.
“Tracking Shows a Different Post Office Is Handling My Package – Why Is That?”
Your item’s tracking information can sometimes show a different post office handling your package instead of the one that typically handles your mail.
While this situation happens for different reasons, one of the most common reasons is that your package comes from a third-party courier, such as Federal Express (FedEx) or United Parcel Service (UPS), and gets handed off to a local post office for final delivery.
In such circumstances, these third-party couriers, which may deliver your package about 90% of the way, will pick a post office they regularly work with to handle that last-mile delivery.
“Can I Pick the Post Office That Can Handle My Mail?”
Often, you have little control over how the post office handles your mail. Even if you want your mail handled by a different post office, USPS cannot provide such an accommodation.
Still, there are a few things you can do despite the limited control you have over which post office handles your mail. These things include setting up a post office box (P.O. box) and using alternative mailing systems, discussed in the following sections.
Set Up a P.O. Box With a Post Office Closer to Your Home or Office
Suppose you have a post office in your town, but the location is far from your home and challenging to travel to regularly. At the same time, you work in a different city, where another post office stands directly across your workplace.
In this case, you can set up a P.O. box at the post office near your work venue.
A P.O. box is a secure, numbered box you can find at the post office. You can keep your mail in this box until you collect your correspondence.
Through this box, you can direct your incoming mail to that specific post office because your P.O. box is located there.
Use Alternative Mailing Solutions Aside From the USPS System
Another solution is to skip the post office entirely and have a third-party, alternative mailbox service as your mailing address.
Aside from offering basic mail services, these alternative mailboxes can provide mail forwarding, check depositing, and package acceptance.
Remember that handing control of your mail to another company you do not trust, even if the provider is an alternative mailbox, is never a good idea.
You must first verify that the company has a reputable track record in the business and a history of safety and security. Furthermore, consider checking customer testimonials to see if the alternative mailbox service’s reviews are mainly positive.
Missed or Failed Deliveries
Some mail requires your recipient’s signature for the mail carrier to deliver the item. If your recipient cannot sign the parcel or the carrier is not permitted to leave it by the door, the mail delivery attempt can fail.
In this situation, the carrier can leave a missed delivery receipt at the delivery location. This receipt indicates which post office is holding your mail. This way, your recipient can wait for another delivery attempt or pick up the mail from that post office.
Missing Mail Claims
If your missing mail is lost or undelivered, and you’re unsure whether it is at a post office, you can file a missing mail claim.
If USPS recovers your mail, the company will redeliver it or inform you which post office to claim your item.
For USPS services such as Priority Mail, Registered Mail, insured mail, and collect on delivery (COD), the company recommends filing a missing mail claim 15 business days after the mailing date and no later than 60 days after that date.
Alternatives to Visiting the Post Office
USPS offers several options to help you avoid visiting the post office if possible.
When you miss the mail delivery time, you can complete a redelivery form online instead of dropping by the post office.
Another option is to create a USPS.com account. With this account, you can include extra services like authorizing USPS to leave your package at your doorstep if you are not home.
A USPS account also lets you request the post office to temporarily hold your mail and schedule an alert to ensure you are home to receive your shipment.
Quick History of the United States Post Office
The Postal Service’s history began in 1775 during the Second Continental Congress and continued in 1787 when the Constitution’s Postal Clause empowered the U.S. Congress to establish post offices and roads.
The following sections discuss the U.S. Postal Service’s rich history.
The “Post Office” Existed Before the U.S. Did!
Before the United States became a country, individual mail- and letter-carrying services existed throughout the original colonies. In 1753, Benjamin Franklin headed what was then the colonial mail system.
Franklin acknowledged the colonies’ need for a smarter and more efficient system to move mail and worked to overhaul the system. The improvement was so significant that the system transformed into an organization that could move mail from Philadelphia to New York City in 30 hours.
During the American Revolution, Franklin knew mail would play a substantial role in communicating with different commanders.
The Pony Express Era
While operating unofficially throughout the new states in America back then, USPS looked for ways to offer mail delivery services to far-flung citizens to the West. The solution the Postal Service created was the Pony Express.
Although the Pony Express era did not last long, it significantly influenced the nation to further develop westward at an unprecedented pace.
Trains, Planes, and Automobiles Changed Everything
Automobiles made the Pony Express nearly obsolete. Not long after the Wright Brothers invented human flight, USPS started commissioning airplanes to deliver to far-flung and remote areas.
The establishment of the transcontinental railroad, which stretched from the East Coast to the West Coast and consisted of multiple stops, also transformed mail delivery forever.
Mail and packages were loaded onto train cars, moved across the transcontinental railroad, and dropped off at individual hubs for further delivery.
The United States Post Office Today
As of 2022, USPS has delivered to about 12.7 million business delivery points and 152.2 million residential addresses. The Postal Service has also processed 44% of the world’s mail and handled a mail volume of 127.3 billion.
With more than 33,000 offices nationwide, the Postal Service has accommodated 689.9 million customer visits and generated a $12.2 billion retail revenue in 2022.
- How do I find my local post office phone number?
Visit your local post office and ask for its number from the staff if you want your local post office’s contact details.
You can also call USPS customer service at 1-800-ASK-USPS to inquire about your local post office’s number.
- How do I check if my mail is lost?
You can check your mail’s delivery status online via USPS Tracking using your parcel’s tracking numbers.
Suppose your recipient confirms the item has not arrived, and seven or more days have passed since the mailing date. You can email USPS regarding your lost piece of mail or submit a search request.
- Size and Scope
- Find USPS Locations
- Gopost: How It Works
- Find USPS Locations: Glossary
- What is an Approved Postal Provider?
- PO Boxes
- File a USPS Claim: Domestic
- About the United States Postal Service