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Thread: Junk Mail and home mailboxes

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    Ace's Avatar
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    Default Junk Mail and home mailboxes

    Coming from the US, I'm used to junk mail. However, NZ seems to have a few twists that I don't quite understand:

    -- Most home mailboxes have a "no circulars" sign on them. Does that really do any good? I have one, and still get all sorts of junk in my mailbox.

    -- I regularly see young kids (maybe 12 yrs old) walking around stuffing junk in people's mailboxes. First, I'm surprised kids that young are allowed to work (not so in the US), and second, I'm surprised anyone other than the postal service is allowed to put things in my mailbox (only the post office in the US is legally allowed to put anything in people's mailboxes). Neither is necessarily a bad thing; just one of those things that takes a little getting used to.

    -- Every once in a while, someone will drop a catalog of some kind at my front door, with a note on it that says something like "please read this. I'll come by in a few days to pick it up." In the US, such a note would be totally ignored, and the junk would be immediately thrown away by 99% of the people who receive it -- so of course that's what I did when I first got one. When the woman came by to pick it up (I was shocked that she actually did what the note on the catalog said she would do), she was horrified that I had thrown the catalog away. She asked where it was, and when I said it was buried in the rubbish bin, she actually asked me if I would be willing to go get it. I declined, but the whole thing made me feel like I did something wrong....

    -- In the US I was used to being able to leave mail in my mailbox, and have it picked up by a postal worker, instead of having to take it to the post office or to a public mailbox. Almost all mailboxes have a flag on them that can be raised to indicate that something is waiting for pickup. My mailbox here doesn't have a flag, nor do most that I see, although I have seen one or two with flags. If I don't have a flag, can I still leave mail in my mailbox to be picked up?

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    MotherBear's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ace View Post
    In the US I was used to being able to leave mail in my mailbox, and have it picked up by a postal worker, instead of having to take it to the post office or to a public mailbox. Almost all mailboxes have a flag on them that can be raised to indicate that something is waiting for pickup. My mailbox here doesn't have a flag, nor do most that I see, although I have seen one or two with flags. If I don't have a flag, can I still leave mail in my mailbox to be picked up?
    Unfortunately I can't answer for the intricacies and wonders of the workings of a NZ mailbox, not being there yet, but some of the newer ones do have flags. When we were last down there we bought a sturdy plastic one which had a flag, but I thought the flag was used by the postie to let the householder know that mail has been desposited in the box. Saves going out in the wet if viewed from the house or saves getting out of the car if it's at the end of a lane, like ours.
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    kokopeli is offline God like figure
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    We were one of the first people to live on our street when we moved into our house in March. The other houses were still being built, so we didn't get any junk mail. Eight months later, the other houses are up and occupied and our mail box is overflowing. Things have got so bad that I put a 'No Circulars' sticker on it last weekend. Haven't had any junk mail since, so I guess it's working.

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    keeweegal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ace View Post
    -- Most home mailboxes have a "no circulars" sign on them. Does that really do any good? I have one, and still get all sorts of junk in my mailbox.
    I think this depends on the people who are delivering the stuff

    Quote Originally Posted by Ace View Post
    -- I regularly see young kids (maybe 12 yrs old) walking around stuffing junk in people's mailboxes. First, I'm surprised kids that young are allowed to work (not so in the US), and second, I'm surprised anyone other than the postal service is allowed to put things in my mailbox (only the post office in the US is legally allowed to put anything in people's mailboxes). Neither is necessarily a bad thing; just one of those things that takes a little getting used to.
    Happens here in Scotland too

    Quote Originally Posted by Ace View Post
    -- Every once in a while, someone will drop a catalog of some kind at my front door, with a note on it that says something like "please read this. I'll come by in a few days to pick it up."
    This is normal here too - just leave it at the front door if you don't want it - they'll soon get the message

    Quote Originally Posted by Ace View Post
    -- In the US I was used to being able to leave mail in my mailbox, and have it picked up by a postal worker, instead of having to take it to the post office or to a public mailbox. Almost all mailboxes have a flag on them that can be raised to indicate that something is waiting for pickup. My mailbox here doesn't have a flag, nor do most that I see, although I have seen one or two with flags. If I don't have a flag, can I still leave mail in my mailbox to be picked up?
    It sounds like things have changed since I left NZ (2000) but you used to only see flags on RD (rural delivery) mailboxes & the postie would pick up your mail from these too. I wouldn't think you could leave anything in your box if you don't have a flag to be picked up tho but you could check with your postie - hopefully you've got a good one

    I'll be glad to get away from the mailbox slots in the houses here - I've never liked the idea that people can stuff anything they want through them or look inside your house if they wanted to!

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    Yeah, the mail service here is definitely *quirky*.

    I keep getting mail for strange people who allegedly live at this address. What makes it strange is that the dozen or so pieces we've received all seem to have different names on them--and no one lived in this house for nearly a year before we moved in!

    So, the first piece I got, I wrote 'no such addressee' on it and put it in my mailbox. Of course, it was still there, along with my mail, the next day. So I threw it away, since it costs money for mail to be forwarded in NZ, I figured that's what NZ Post would do with it anyway.

    But my wife has more of a conscience than I do, so the last piece that obviously wasn't just fancy junk mail she took to the post office and asked them what to do with it. By their reaction, you would have thought she had two heads.

    I do like the fact, though, that the junk mail is delivered by hand. The 'Bulk Mail Postal Permit' is one of the worst--and most evil--pieces of corporate welfare ever devised. When we were back in the US, you and I paid for all those credit card come-ons and Wal-Mart fliers ... argh!

    I wonder, though, do the post carriers have to buy their own bicycles?
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    kokopeli is offline God like figure
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    Quote Originally Posted by KiwiHopeful View Post
    I wonder, though, do the post carriers have to buy their own bicycles?
    Mate, you need to get a job Or do something else to occupy your mind. Come for a paddle on the Avon tomorrow (Wednesday). Bright and early. Well, 9.15. It's gonna be windy........

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    Dawn's Avatar
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    We live on a RD. There's a NO JUNK MAIL sign on our mailbox put there by the previous peeps. The postie stopped me on the way out the other day and asked if we were still happy for this to apply. DURRRR!! I replied politely and hence no junk mail. Spiffing!!!
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    You have several options:

    1. No junk mail
    2. Addressed mail mail only
    3. No circulars

    The kids that deliver in my area are pretty good to pay attention. If you have an issue just say something to them. They have a small route to service so they will remember.

    This in not the uSA where the post office is owned by the US postal service. There is more than one postal delivery service here. I think the fact the mail is delivered by the "postie" on push bike is pretty kewl.

    Service in NZ is often 1 day. 2 day mail is slow mail. Packages are not expensive to ship either.

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    Last edited by Cliff; 02-05-2008 at 07:21 PM.

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    Delivery of circulars by children (12yrs or over) is quite common in NZ...As far as mail arriving at your address with the name of a person you do not know, just simply put on the front of the envelope "Not at this address" and pop it into a Post Office Mail Box.



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  10. #10
    SNataliaH is offline Junior Member
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    It's funny how different countries that share a language can be.

    The New Zealand way of delivering post is very similar to Australia.

    The junk mail is almost always delivered by younger people - the 'paper run' is the only job kids under the age of fourteen years and nine months can do in Australia. It's easy to do, is often shared, gives the children something better to do than play video games, plus it's great exercise!


    The 'Avon lady' always leaves catalogues to be picked up a few days later.

    I've never heard of letter boxes with red flags. And I've lived in a number of different countries.

    It's really interesting how different the little things always seem to be.

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