A virtual mailbox service is the easiest way for Canadian businesses to receive physical mail and packages in Canada or the United States without a permanent address. Digital mailboxes are also ideal for Canadian shoppers buying items online from companies in the United States who won't ship across the border directly.
After researching and testing more than a dozen companies over 12+ months, iPostal1 is my top choice for the best virtual mailbox for Canadians due to its 2,300+ locations and excellent overall value. With thousands of 5-star reviews and great customer support, I can't recommend iPostal1 highly enough.
The Best Virtual Mailbox Services to Consider
- iPostal1 – Best overall
- Anytime Mailbox – Best Canadian presence
- Planet Express – Best for one-time shipments to Canada
- PostScan Mail – Best for cloud storage
What Is The Best Virtual Mailbox?
1. iPostal1 – Best Overall
Monthly fee: Starting at $9.99
iPostal1 is my pick for the top virtual mailbox service for Canadians because it offers 2,300+ addresses, unique and powerful digital mailbox features, consistent plans across all locations, and great value overall. Users can view and manage their mail and packages with the iPostal1 app or online, and plans cost just $9.99/month.
iPostal1 ships thousands of packages across the US-Canadian border every day, which gives them access to deep volume discounts, which they pass on to their customers. This means that Canadians using iPostal1 save more money over the long run than they would with any other virtual mailbox, both because their mailboxes cost just $9.99/month, and because cross-border shipments are so affordable.
If you’re running a US-based business but live in Canada, iPostal1 makes it affordable to get a real US street address to upgrade your company image, protect your privacy and register your business legally in the United States. You'll also get exclusive features like real-time shipping prices and the option to choose virtual office plans with phone and fax, adding legitimacy to your online or US-based business.
Overall, iPostal1 is a reliable, secure virtual mailbox provider that's been in business since 2007. As a Canadian who's used iPostal1 for years, I can't recommend them highly enough.
- 2,300+ locations in all 50 states plus Canada and other countries
- Deep shipping discounts to Canada
- Tax-free warehouses in Delaware, Oregon, Montana, Alaska and New Hampshire
- Office building and co-working locations also available
- Mail forwarding, including consolidation of letters and packages
- Free storage for 30 days
- Real-time shipping prices
- Open and scan mail content ($1.50 for up to 10 pages)
- Mail pickup + discarding/shredding
- Check deposit by mail available at most locations
- Virtual office plans with phone and fax (from $39.99/month)
- Digital mailbox: $9.99/month
- Mail scanning: $1.50 for up to 10 pages
- Mail forwarding: Cost of postage
- Storage: 30 days free, then $1.10 per letter per month
This screenshot offers a bit more info into iPostal1's pricing structure: if you pay annually, you'll get 2 months free, with their Blue and Silver plans being their most popular.
Canadian business owners, travelers and online shoppers
2. Anytime Mailbox – Best Canadian Presence
Best Int'l Presence
Monthly fee: $5—$10
With 1,600+ mailbox locations spread across the US, Canada and 40+ other countries—plus services like package consolidation to reduce the cost of shipping—Anytime Mailbox is a great mailbox both for Canadian business owners and online shoppers buying from US stores that won't ship to Canada.
Anytime Mailbox offers all of the standard digital mailbox services (mail scans, check deposits, etc.) plus others that many other mailboxes don't offer, such as local pickup and secure shredding. They also offer a generous 60 days of free storage on all letters and packages, and forward postal mail anywhere in the world, including Canada.
Anytime Mailbox's plans range from $5 to $30+ per month, which is reasonable given the variety of services they offer. As you can see in the screenshot of their Greater Toronto Area mailboxes above, prices are different for each mailbox, making it fairly easy to find one that meets your budget.
One of the main reasons I recommend iPostal1 over Anytime Mailbox is because their pricing and service offering is so much more stable and predictable: you know exactly what to expect from every iPostal1 mailbox, and it all comes for just $9.99/month. If iPostal1 doesn't work for you, though, Anytime Mailbox is undoubtedly a solid, professional mailbox provider that does not disappoint.
- 1,600+ locations in the US, Canada and 40+ other countries
- Tax-free warehouses in Delaware, Oregon, Montana, Alaska and New Hampshire
- 60 days of free storage on all letters and packages
- Deep shipping discounts with all major carriers
- Letter + package consolidation
- Local pickup available for a fee ($1-$5 per item)
- Mail scanning ($0.50/page)
- Forward packages for $5
- Check deposits
- Secure shredding ($0.10/page)
- Monthly Fee: $5-$10/month
- Mail Scanning: $0.50/page
- Mail Forwarding: $5 + the cost of shipping
- Storage: Free for 60 days, then 5 cents/item/day
Canadian business owners and online shoppers buying from retailers around the world.
3. Planet Express – Best For One-Time Shipments To Canada
No Monthly Fees
Monthly fee: None
Planet Express is a package forwarder designed specifically for online shoppers, and they serve those shoppers extremely well. They have mailboxes in the US (California, Oregon and Florida) and the UK, making them a great choice for Canadians shopping from those two countries.
Unlike the other mailbox providers on this list, Planet Express only deals with packages, not letter mail, so if you're looking for a new business address where you can accept business mail, Planet Express is not the company for you (go with iPostal1 instead). With that said, though, one great thing about Planet Express is that they don't charge any monthly fees. This is extremely rare among package forwarders, making them stand out among a crowd of others charging $5-$30 per month.
Planet Express' Shop For Me service allows you to shop in the US even without a credit card: their team will place your orders for you, and you'll pay them back through a variety of payment methods, including PayPal. This is great for Canadian shoppers, since some US retailers won't accept credit cards that aren't tied to a billing address in the United States.
I’ve personally used Planet Express for more than 3 years and have had nothing but great experiences with them. If you live abroad but are shopping from US retailers, I can recommend them as a reliable package forwarding service.
- The only free package forwarding plan in the USA
- Warehouses in the US and the UK
- Tax-free warehouses in Oregon
- Deep discounts with USPS, DHL, FedEx, UPS, and Planet Express' own shipping service
- Free photos of incoming packages
- Shop For Me purchase assistance
- Package consolidation
- 10-45 days of free package storage, depending on your plan
- Monthly fee: $0 – $10/month
- Free photos upon package arrival
- $2 for 3 photos inside your package
- $5 for 10 photos inside your package
- Package / Mail Forwarding: $2/package + shipping
- Storage: 10-45 days free, then $0.01 per pound/day
Canadian online shoppers seeking a package forwarder with no monthly fees.
4. PostScan Mail – Best For Cloud Storage
Best For Letter Mail
Monthly fee: $15—$30
PostScan Mail operates a network of 400+ virtual mailboxes across the United States, with none currently in Canada. Its robust mobile app allows you to place your mail into digital folders and filter while you search, making finding and organizing your postal mail easy.
PostScan Mail allows 30 days of free storage for letters (7 days for packages), and offers unlimited cloud storage, so you can keep years' worth of postal mail on their servers. They eliminate junk mail before it reaches your inbox and have run a respectable mail forwarding service for years.
- Free storage for 7 days (packages) and 30 days (letters)
- Tax-free warehouses in Delaware, Oregon, Montana and Alaska
- Local pickup
- Letter + package consolidation
- Unlimited cloud storage
- Real U.S. street addresses
- Monthly fee: $15 – $30/month
- Mail Scanning: 5-20 free scans per month (depending on your plan), then $2 per letter
- Mail Forwarding: $0.85 per item + shipping
- Letter Storage: First 30 days free, then $0.05 per letter/day.
- Free Package Storage: First 7 days free, then $0.10 per pound/day.
Canadian businesses with low to moderate amounts of incoming letter mail.
Virtual Mailboxes I Don’t Recommend
In my research into digital mailboxes, I discovered a handful of mailboxes that I don’t recommend for a variety of different reasons:
- US Global Mail: US Global Mail has a sleek website, but it also has a tendency to nickel-and-dime its customers, charging them small fees in every way it can, especially when it comes to cross-border shipments to Canada. If you’d rather not pay a monthly fee or get hit with unexpected charges around every turn, go with Planet Express instead.
- Earth Class Mail: Earth Class Mail only has mailboxes within the US (zero in Canada), significantly restricting its usefulness. For a better digital mailbox with just as strong US coverage as Earth Class Mail, go with iPostal1.
- Traveling Mailbox: Like US Global Mail and Earth Class Mail, Traveling Mailbox has a tendency to charge its customers fees for everything, making cross-border shipments to Canada much more expensive than users expect. For more accurate, honest pricing, go with iPostal1 or Anytime Mailbox.
- USA2Me: USA2Me’s main draw is its free plan, though just setting up an account with them costs $23—and there are additional fees after that. For a better free mailbox with zero setup fees, go with Planet Express.
- eSnail.ca: The biggest issue with eSnail.ca is cost: $25/month gets you just 20 pieces of mail, less than you get on iPostal1's $9.99/month plan, plus you don't get any of the extras that come with it. For better value, choose either iPostal1 or Anytime Mailbox.
- Your Canadian Address: This Montreal-based virtual mailbox may seem promising, but its technology is ages behind the mailboxes I recommend above, which makes for a very frustrating user experience. All four of the mailboxes I recommend will provide a better experience than Your Canadian Address.
- ForwardingMe.com: ForwardingMe only has three locations (Montreal, Toronto/Markham and Calgary), which means it can't solve the big issue Canadians face of getting items into Canada when they can't be shipped there directly.
My Pick For The Best Virtual Mailbox: iPostal1
After researching and testing more than a dozen companies over 12+ months, iPostal1 is my top choice for the best virtual mailbox for Canadians due to its 2,300+ locations and excellent overall value. With a well-developed app and features like check deposits, secure mail shredding and junk mail filtering, iPostal1 is a valuable tool for Canadian business owners looking to scale their US operations quickly.
With thousands of 5-star reviews and great customer support, I can't recommend iPostal1 highly enough.
Why you should trust me
Digital NomadI've lived in 8 countries over the past decade, so I know the struggles of getting things shipped to wherever I am.
Deep ResearchI opened accounts (and shipped items) with 14 different mailboxes to write this post.
UnbiasedAll of my selections are supported by multiple data points, including dozens of other virtual mailbox users, Amazon shoppers, and entrepreneurs running businesses overseas.
Benefits Of Virtual Mailboxes In Canada
There are a few major benefits of using a digital mailbox:
- Convenience: You have control over all your mail right at your fingertips. You’ll see new mail arrive, be able to forward it to you here in Canada (or to other locations), and even have checks deposited. If the digital mailbox you choose also provides a virtual office (iPostal1 is one that does), you can get a dedicated phone number answered by a real receptionist, too.
- Freedom To Travel: Have your postal mail or packages forwarded to you anywhere in the world, freeing you up to travel whenever and wherever you want.
- Privacy: There are many reasons why you may not want to give out your home address, especially if you're registering a business and your physical address will be publicly accessible. Using a virtual address is a great way to maintain your privacy while still reaping all of the benefits a physical address entails.
- Security: All of the mailboxes I recommend above go to great lengths to ensure that your documents (legal, business, and personal) are handled very securely. Communications with end users are encrypted with bank-level SSL encryption, and your account is protected behind a password and 2-factor authentication (2FA) if you choose. It's also worth pointing out that every mailbox provider in Canada and the United States has to follow strict legal guidelines, and there are harsh consequences if they fail to keep users’ information safe.
- Registered Agent Services: Premium mailbox providers like iPostal1 also offer registered agent services in the United States, which can offer tremendous value if you’re considering a digital mailbox for your business. A registered agent can take care of sensitive documents and legal filings on your behalf, giving you much more flexibility as a business owner who lives in Canada or travels frequently.
Virtual Mailboxes FAQs
What Is A Virtual Mailbox?
A digital mailbox gives you a physical mailing address where you can accept letters, documents, and packages while you're away from home. You can also use your virtual mailbox to create an online archive of your documents and important papers, or even as an official business address when opening an LLC.
When your mailbox provider receives a piece of your mail, they'll scan the envelope or take a photo of the package and email it to you.
Getting started with a virtual mailbox service is simple:
- Open an account with one of the virtual PO boxes mentioned in this post (I recommend iPostal1 or Anytime Mailbox).
- The service you select will assign you a unique virtual mailing address, which you can have letters and packages sent to.
- Start receiving email notifications every time a piece of mail arrives.
Standard Virtual Mailbox Services
These are the services that nearly all mailbox providers offer:
- Discounted cross-border shipments from the US to Canada
- Open and scan/photograph your letters and packages for you to view online
- Forward letters and packages to you domestically or internationally
- Receive credit cards and bank statements (including US credit cards for Canadians)
- Receive legal statements and personal & business bills
- Instant notification when you receive a piece of mail
- Shred and destroy unwanted mail
- Filter out junk mail like flyers
Advanced Virtual Mailbox Services
These services are only offered by some mailbox service providers:
- Long-term package storage
- Unlimited digital storage
- Repack and consolidate multiple packages to save on shipping costs
- Real street address (not a PO box)
- Personal shopping service
- Deposit checks for you and your business
- Sign for letters and packages upon delivery
Are Virtual Mailbox Services Safe?
Yes, virtual PO boxes are safe because they're accessed exclusively online and are not available to the public. All of the digital mailboxes I recommend above operate from secure data centers and comply with the latest security protocols, including 128-bit SSL encryption and full disk encryption for all customer data.
All digital mailboxes in the United States must comply with strict USPS guidelines and face stiff penalties if they fail to keep users’ information safe. Data restrictions are a little less strict in Canada (though still impactful), and virtual PO boxes are not permitted to release their users' addresses to anyone unless they are specifically instructed to do so.
What Is The Cheapest Virtual Mailbox?
The cheapest mailbox provider is iPostal1, whose plans start at just $9.99/month with no hidden fees. It's possible to get a $5/month mailbox from Anytime Mailbox, but you will face some additional fees, so if cost is your primary concern, I recommend iPostal1.
On the other hand, if you're planning to only receive packages (not letter mail), you should give Planet Express a try. It's the only package forwarding service in the US with a free plan, making it an excellent choice for budget-conscious shoppers looking to get items shipped from the US to Canada.
Which Virtual Mailbox Is Best?
The best overall virtual mailbox is iPostal1, both for its low pricing and its excellent customer service. I’ve tested out more than a dozen different mailbox providers, and if you’re looking to get your purchases forwarded to you quickly and reliably, I recommend iPostal1.
But don't take my word for it: as you can see here, iPostal1 has received excellent ratings from more than 5,000 reviews on Trustpilot, Sitejabber, and Google.
What's The Best Free Virtual Mailbox?
The best (and only) free virtual mailbox service you'll find in the United States is Planet Express. With no monthly fees, you only pay Planet Express for the mail you receive and ship, making it a very budget-conscious offering.
Keep in mind, though, that Planet Express is actually a package forwarder, not a virtual mailbox, which means they only accept packages, not letter mail. Here's a photo of one of Planet Express' warehouses to show you what it looks like inside there.
I've used Planet Express to ship dozens of items to Canada and other countries around the world, and my experience has always been positive.
Which Virtual Mailbox Services Offer A Free Trial (First Month Free)?
No digital mailboxes currently offer a free trial (first month free), but Planet Express' free plan is an option if you don't want to pay a monthly fee. Just keep in mind that Planet Express only works with packages, not letter mail.
What's The Best Virtual Mailbox For Small Business?
The best virtual mailbox for small business is iPostal1, since it offers real street addresses, protecting the privacy of both your family and your business for just $9.99 per month. You can read more about iPostal1 in my full review of iPostal1.
Does Canada Post offer a virtual mailbox?
No, Canada Post does not offer virtual mailboxes, and they have no plans to in the future. Instead, Canada Post offers PO boxes, but those lack some of the core features of digital mailboxes, including the ability to easily forward mail and packages to another address domestically or abroad.
What Kind Of Mail Forwarding Service Do Virtual Mailboxes Offer?
Most digital mailboxes offer mail and package forwarding of all kinds: if you can get an item shipped to them, they're able to forward it on to you. The companies listed above have all negotiated special discounts with the big shipping companies, too, so you can ship your items for far less than retail price.
Mail forwarding services are convenient both for businesses and for frequent travelers, since you won't need to update your mailing address so frequently. If you're looking for a secure mail forwarding service, any of the companies I recommend above are a great choice.
What's The Best Virtual Mailbox For Expats?
The best virtual mailbox service for expats depends on where you are in the world: expats based in Europe will have different priorities than those based in Asia, and the same goes for other places around the world. If you're just looking for a solid all-around digital mailbox, though, I recommend iPostal1.
Can I Use A Virtual Mailbox For An LLC?
Yes, you can use a virtual mailbox address for your LLC both in Canada or in the United States. It's easy to register your mailbox in your name or under a business entity since it's a physical mailing address, making the process of running your LLC much simpler.
How Much Does A Virtual PO Box Cost?
Some virtual PO boxes, like Planet Express, don't charge monthly fees, while others, like iPostal1, Anytime Mailbox, and PostScan Mail charge fees ranging from $5 – $30/month. Virtual business addresses tend to cost more, since they may offer specialized services like access to a live telephone receptionist.
Is A Virtual Mailbox Better Than A PO Box?
Yes, virtual mailbox services are better than PO boxes in some crucial ways, perhaps the most important of which is that PO box users can only check their mail during business hours (and not on federal holidays). Virtual mailbox users are also able to change the location of their mailbox much easier than PO box users can, giving them extra flexibility in case their mailbox needs suddenly change.
Can I get a US credit card using a virtual mailbox?
Yes, it is possible to use a virtual address to apply for American credit cards and bank accounts, though you may run into some complications along the way. Some US banks still require credit card and bank account applicants to visit their local branch to verify their ID (especially if they’re not a US citizen), which would make things difficult if you’re in Canada.
Fortunately, once you get approved for one card, getting subsequent cards is generally much easier.
Can I Use A Virtual Mailbox For My LLC?
Yes, you can use a virtual mailbox for your LLC, and thousands of companies already do. Whether you already have an established LLC or are opening one for the first time, a virtual mailbox can save you time, money and effort in the process, making your business less burdensome and more profitable.