Can You Hold Mail Then Forward To A New Address?

Written by
Amber Hobert
Published on
June 2, 2023
Table of Contents

Moving to a new address involves a multitude of tasks and considerations, from getting a new home, planning the relocation, and finally settling down. One important aspect is ensuring that your mail reaches you without interruption.

The United States Postal Service (USPS) offers convenient solutions to help you manage your mail during a move, including the option to hold mail temporarily and forward it to your new address.

This blog post will explore holding mail and forwarding it to a new address. We will delve into the USPS Hold Mail service, the mail forwarding process, and how these services can be utilized together to ensure a smooth transition for your mail.

So, if you're curious whether you can hold mail and have it forwarded to your new location, keep reading to discover the answers and gain valuable insights for your next move.

What is USPS Hold Mail Service?

The USPS Hold Mail service is designed to pause your mail delivery to your current address temporarily. This service comes in handy when you're planning to be away for an extended period or if you're currently in the process of moving and need to ensure that your mail is held securely.

How to request a mail hold and the duration of the hold 

Requesting a mail hold is a simple process that can be done online through the USPS website or by visiting your local post office. When requesting a mail hold, you must provide essential details such as your name, current address, the desired start and end dates for the hold, and any specific instructions you may have. The hold usually spans three to 30 days, but it is possible to extend it if needed.

Benefits and limitations of using the mail hold service

The mail-hold service offers several advantages. It prevents your mailbox from overflowing, safeguards your mail from potential theft or damage, and allows you to retrieve all accumulated mail once ready.

However, it's essential to note that the mail-hold service only applies to USPS-delivered mail, and mail from other carriers or services may not be held. Also, packages and items requiring a signature may not be eligible for the mail hold service.

By understanding how the USPS Mail Hold service works, you can effectively pause your mail delivery during your move or when you're away, ensuring that important documents and packages are safely held until you're ready to receive them.

Mail Forwarding Process

The USPS Mail Forwarding service allows you to redirect your mail from your old address directly to your new one. It ensures that any mail sent to your previous location is automatically forwarded after address change to your current place, eliminating the need to update each sender individually.

How to set up mail forwarding and the required information

To set up mail forwarding, visit the USPS website or visit your local post office. You'll need to accurately complete a Change of Address (COA) form, providing your old address, your new address, the date you want the forwarding to start, and the duration of the forwarding period. Providing accurate information is vital to ensure your mail is redirected correctly.

Timeframe and duration for mail forwarding

The USPS typically offers mail forwarding for a specified period, often ranging from 6 to 12 months. Your mail will then be forwarded to your new mailing address during this time. It's crucial to update your address with any critical contacts during this period to ensure continued mail delivery beyond the forwarding time frame.

Exceptions and limitations to mail forwarding

While mail forwarding is a convenient service, there are a few exceptions and limitations to be aware of. Certain classes of mail may not be forwarded, such as periodicals or catalogs.

Additionally, some mailers may not honor the forwarding request and may require you to update your address directly with them. Keeping track of the forwarded mail and taking proactive steps to update your address with important organizations is essential.

Understanding the mail forward process is crucial. It can help you seamlessly redirect your mail to your new address, minimizing the risk of missing important documents or packages during your move. It's a valuable service that simplifies the transition and ensures a smooth continuation of your mail delivery.

Holding Mail and Forwarding to a New Address

Can you hold mail and then forward it to a new address? Yes, you can hold mail and then forward it to your new address. You can use these two USPS services in conjunction to manage your mail while you're moving.

Holding your mail temporarily ensures it's kept securely while you arrange your new address. Once ready, you can initiate the mail forwarding process to redirect your held mail to your new location.

How to hold mail before setting up mail forwarding

Holding mail before setting up mail forwarding involves requesting a mail hold and collecting the held mail. Let's take a look at what these two entail.

Request a mail hold

Before you move, request a mail hold using the USPS Mail Hold service. Specify the start and end dates for the hold period, ensuring that it covers the duration of your move.

Collect held mail

Once the mail hold period ends, visit your local post office or schedule a delivery to receive all the accumulated mail held during the specified dates. This ensures that you have all the mail in your possession before proceeding with the forwarding process.

How to ensure smooth mail holding and forwarding

To ensure smooth mail holding and forwarding, you have to do the following:

Change your address

When you have your new address, update it with important contacts, such as banks, credit card companies, and utility providers. This step helps ensure that your mail is correctly addressed and reduces the likelihood of it being forwarded unnecessarily.

Set up mail forwarding

After changing your address, set up mail forwarding using the USPS Mail Forwarding service. Provide accurate information about your old and new addresses and the desired start date for forwarding. This will redirect any mail not held during the mail hold period to your new address.

Common challenges and how to overcome them

Holding mail and forwarding it to a new address is not always seamless. Here are some common hiccups you will likely face and how to deal with them as they arise.


It's crucial to time your mail hold and forward requests appropriately. Make sure to request the mail hold for a duration that covers your move and initiate mail forwarding shortly after updating your address to minimize the gap in mail delivery.

Address updates

Staying organized and recording important contacts and organizations that require your updated address is crucial. Take the necessary steps to individually update your address with them to ensure seamless mail delivery even after the forwarding period ends.

This proactive approach will help prevent any disruptions in receiving your mail.

Knowledge of the process of holding mail and then forwarding it to a new address will help you effectively manage your mail during a move.

It allows for a smooth transition, ensuring that your mail is held securely and then redirected to your new location, minimizing any disruptions in mail delivery.

Consult a Reputable Mail Forwarding Service

Managing your mail during a move is crucial for a smooth transition and uninterrupted delivery of essential items. Utilizing USPS services like holding mail and forwarding it to a new address is a good start. However, consider partnering with a reliable mail forwarding company for enhanced convenience.

A reputable mail forwarding company offers convenient online mail management and package consolidation services. By exploring these companies, you can take the next step towards a stress-free move and ensure a seamless transition for your mail.

Keep the hassle of mail management from weighing you down during your move. Discover the benefits of a trusted mail forwarding company today and experience a worry-free transition for your mail.

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