An Post: Making no sense is our business

With some upcoming business address changes in the works, I thought I’d investigate PO Box services from An Post, as changing your business address is an incredibly time-consuming process. You have to change bank addresses (multiple ones, and it requires form filling out and signing of stuff), phone accounts, CRO, documents, contracts, email signatures and on and on and on.

So I thought: given that we’re a business run by two people, now on different continents (and another relocation could be not too far away) it would make sense to have  a PO box. Change address again? No problem, just change the redirection of the PO box. Not a single document change required.

I looked at An Post’s PO Box service information page.

As an individual or a company, you can rent a PO Box or Vanity PO Box, and either collect your mail from your local Delivery Services Unit, or arrange for it to be delivered to your home or office.

Ok, so far so good. That makes sense and is easy to understand. Then I looked at their pricing table.

Nonsensical Pricing Table

What? What the hell is this even saying?

We, in theory, would be interested in the PO Box Delivery option. From what I can deduce if we ordered this service and read the table in a logical manner, the cost would be as follows:

  • in January we’d pay €940.00;
  • for the month of June we’d pay €548.33; and
  • December would cost us €78.33.

I’ve looked at this over and over and it just doesn’t make any sense to me. I can’t even work out what I could be missing, or any method by which you could read this table and have it make sense. The only thing I’ve spotted is that the “December” price for PO Box Deliver and PO Box Forward Delivery, when multiplied by twelve, equals the January price. However that doesn’t explain the first two cost columns. Have a look for yourself: An Post PO Box Services information page.

There’s no other information on their page that helps to clarify this; the oddest pricing structure table I’ve ever seen. If anyone at An Post reads this, you definitely need to change that table. Perhaps have a look at how modern sites offer easy to understand pricing structures.

If you’ve got an idea how to interpret this I’d love to hear about it in the comments.

Comments

  • I noticed they're missing an exclamation mark from the table heading.

    It should read "How much?!"

  • A very valid point. I should contact their copy writers.

    No matter what way you read that table it certainly looks like an insanely expensive service, one which a smaller business like ours could definitely not sustain, but which would be more likely to benefit from having a PO Box address. I don't really understand it at all.

    They have another <a href="http://www.anpost.ie/AnPost/MainContent/Business+Customers/Managing+Mail/Business+Redirection.htm&quot; rel="nofollow">page on Business Redirection, where at least the "How much" table makes sense. However when you look at the pricing it seems quite a rip off. €220 for a year of redirection when (presumably) all it should take is an entry in their mail sorting system.

    Perhaps they're more antiquated than I thought and they have some guy checking every envelope for our name.

  • That is ridiculous. I can only assume it's their way of saying it get's cheaper if you buy a box for the year rather than a month at a time. (I wonder what they do with your mail if it arrives after your subscription window?).

    Have a look at Mailboxes etc.
    http://www.mbeireland.ie/mailbox_services/prices….

    I gives a better break down of costs

    Also virtual office services (the same thing) such as https://www.dublinmaildrop.com/maildrop.html asking for €245 per year

    …that's your ball park figure.. avg €230 per year… and likely more costs on top either way.

  • Hey Mark,

    Yep, An Post are massively ripping people off there, or have no idea how to explain their cost setup.

    Thanks for those links. Dublin Mail Drop look like a reasonable option seeing as their cost includes forwarding the mail (which is what we need).

    I've sent them an email enquiring about particulars.

    Nice one.

  • no bother.. i'd been looking into it before.. i never even checked an post (just as well, to save confusion!) as i reckoned it would be the most expenseive.

  • an post are a total rip off and endemic of the irish business psyche… rip off as much as you can for as long as you can… in an posts case they seem to be oblivious of the fact that the country is gone down the swanny and they still employ their US style corporate rip off pricing structure… what i call the 'car park theory' … stay for 1 hour costs you 2.50, 1 second over that hour costs you 5 quid… the same theory applies to their postage prices.. as far as i'm concerned management in an post are just like our ex fianna fail politicians that we just ousted… dirty scummy bas**rds

  • Gerry

    When you look at anpost website it also says that their pricing is from January till December. So by deduction , if you take out a po box from January till December you pay the January price. If you start you subscription in march. The price it has quoted is from march till December and so on. I believe the price quoted beside each month is the price from that month till December. Very badly laid out!

  • Hey Gerry,

    That approach seems to make sense. But holy moly it just doesn't get it across at all (and it's still ludicrously expensive).

    Very happy with Dublin Mail Box guys. Affordable, no problems at all.

    Cheers for dropping a comment 🙂