Recieving Packages in NYC inexpensively
May 22, 2010 6:54 AM   Subscribe

Downtown NYC: Are there any inexpensive package receiving services around? I'm in a doorman-less building and have an Amazon Prime subscription that I'd like to take advantage of.

I just moved into an apartment in Nolita, and I work in the Financial District, so ideally I'd like a place close to either neighborhood. I checked out the UPS Store and Mailboxes etc, and both are ~$35-40 every month depending on the time rented, and you have to prepay up front for at least 3 months.

I'm not super concerned about little stuff from Amazon, but I'm itching to pull the trigger on a laptop as well as have some boxes of valuables sent from family across the country that I wouldn't want to be left in the hallway. Shipping to work isn't ideal either because it can sometimes take 3-4 days extra to get a personal package because of internal routing/security scans/etc.

I was hoping for some place where I wouldn't necessarily need an actual PO Box but they would still accept packages for around ~$20 dollars per month, and I figured that I should ask here before I spring for the UPS Store PO Box services.
posted by theDrizzle to Shopping (10 answers total)
I used to live above a mom and pop restaurant in the East Village and became friends with the owner. Thankfully, their food was awesome so we were regulars anyway. They signed packages for me and a few other people in my building. It's worth looking into.
posted by spec80 at 7:01 AM on May 22, 2010

Best answer: I work in the FiDi area. Recently, I had a package delivered to the UPS store on Hanover Square. The store charged me $5 for accepting the delivery.
posted by LOLAttorney2009 at 8:54 AM on May 22, 2010

Best answer: Do any of your neighbors work from home or are SAHM/D that are often home?

I've seen "package acceptance services" that aren't PO Boxes at places like the UPS store. I might inquire around for one of those. Ask those Mailboxes etc places about that service specifically. It might not be listed, ask.

I understand about security issues at work but if I was having something valuable shipped it would be worth it to me for the extra piece of mind to ship it there. You probably don't want your books shipped there for that reason but I wouldn't trust a package receiving service with a laptop or any valuables.
posted by micawber at 9:32 AM on May 22, 2010

How frequent are these deliveries? When I've lived in non-doorman buildings, I've worked from home when expecting a delivery of this kind.

This isn't practical if the deliveries are very frequent or if working from home is not an option for you.

Another possibility is to have it delivered to a friend who lives in a doorman building, assuming your friend is cool with this. If you do do this, however, make sure that the package is delivered in your friend's name, and not yours. Some doormen are more clueless than others and will ignore the apartment number on a package and just go by the name. If the name doesn't match a resident in the building they won't accept the package.
posted by dfriedman at 12:39 PM on May 22, 2010

Some workplaces won't care if you get stuff shipped there. Most of the people at my tiny company do this, but my mom works for a large corporation, and I know she does it from time to time too. YMMV, and ask around first.
posted by !Jim at 2:07 PM on May 22, 2010

Response by poster: Thanks for the responses! I moved to the city last week, so I haven't developed relationships with my neighbors/local shopowners yet. Since Amazon Prime provides free shipping on everything, I'd like to have pretty frequent deliveries if possible to maximize my membership, so having a single solution seems to make the most sense. I've googled for "package acceptance" or "package receiving" in the area, and I haven't found anything past the chain packaging stores.

I'll probably try out the UPS Store acceptance-only thing at first, and maybe also just take the hit for a few months and get a PO Box until I meet people who might be in a position to receive deliveries for me.
posted by theDrizzle at 3:21 PM on May 22, 2010

You can get a post office box at the Post Office for $60-72/year, depending on location.

By the look of it, most NYC post offices ask $72/yr. There are a few that go for $60, and one at $90. I just paged the the first dozen results, though. There are apparently 50 post offices within 5 miles of 10003.
posted by chazlarson at 4:07 PM on May 22, 2010

A PO box from the actual US Postal Service post office is not going to do you any good at all for Amazon Prime, since FedEx and UPS can't deliver to USPS PO boxes.
posted by strangely stunted trees at 4:18 PM on May 22, 2010

You can also plan your orders so the packages are delivered on Saturday.
posted by aloysius on the mixing boards at 5:50 PM on May 22, 2010

I always had packages shipped to work or would work things out with a neighbor.

You can also have them held at the post office/local UPS/Fedex and just go fetch them, although with the current budget who knows if they'll continue weekend or after 5 hours.

If you are able to catch your local delivery person you can ask what they think - I'm sure they've heard/seen it all.
posted by cestmoi15 at 7:15 PM on May 22, 2010

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