Before the 1850s, there were no mailboxes.
Mailboxes became a necessity when postage stamps were invented. Postage stamps gave people more freedom in sending letters as postage stamps no longer made it necessary to pay for postage at the local post office.
Nowadays, mailboxes still exist but not everywhere:
Here is Why Mailboxes Do Not Exist Everywhere:
Not every country has a postage system or laws about sending mail. Some countries, like the US, have very specific laws about mail and postage, while some do not have any at all. This is why mailboxes do not exist everywhere.
Does Everyone Have A Mailbox?
While mailboxes are pretty common in the US, Canada, and other Western countries, that is not the case in other parts of the world.
Not everyone has a mailbox.
The reason for this is that every country has different laws about postage. The US, for example, has a set of strict and specific rules about postage and mail services.
There are even some rules about how big the mailboxes should be in the US to ensure uniformity. Mailboxes for residential buildings should be big enough for letter envelopes and magazines.
It should be made of sturdy materials to withstand weather and regular wear and tear. It should also have some device that indicates if there is a letter inside the mailbox.
In some countries, houses have a small receptacle for letters. There are houses with mail slots on the front door so that the postman slides the letter through that slot and the letter goes directly into the house.
Some countries have no postal system, whereas the cities have no postal codes.
Some countries have a postal system, but the letters and packages are just dropped off at the gate or on the porch.
There are some places where people must go to the post office and pick up their mail and parcels.
Are There Countries Without Mailboxes?
Postal systems are different in each country.
There are even some countries with no postal service. These countries also do not have a postal code. Thus, there are countries without mailboxes.
Most of the countries without mailboxes are in Africa. Some of them are part of the islands in the Pacific Ocean, which is not easy to travel to.
Here are the countries that do not have mailboxes:
- Antigua and Barbuda
- Burkina Faso
- Cook Islands
- East Timor
- Equatorial Guinea
- North Korea
- Sierra Leone
- Solomon Islands
- Trinidad and Tobago
Do Farms in the Country Have Mailboxes?
In countries where mailboxes are very common, you can see mailboxes almost everywhere, from office buildings to residential buildings and houses.
Even farms in the country have mailboxes.
In countries with a postal system, farms can have mailboxes. Of course, certain rules still need to be followed.
A mailbox should be 41 to 45 inches above the road surface. It should also be 6 to 8 inches from the road’s edge. There is even a manual for installing mailboxes.
For rural areas where the farms normally are, they place all mailboxes on the right side of the road in the direction of travel. It would be best to conform to highway regulations and state laws.
Do People Prefer PO Boxes?
While PO boxes and mailboxes have the same function, storage, and receptacle for mail, these two are different.
Residential and private mailboxes carry the complete address of the homeowner. PO boxes are only identified by their PO number.
A PO box number cannot be used as an official address for your home or business. You cannot use this number as an address for filing paperwork or even find someone’s PO boxes on Google.
PO boxes can give users privacy and security by eliminating the need to give out their complete home addresses.
Using PO boxes instead of mailboxes can give you some peace of mind knowing that people do not know what your actual home address is while still being able to receive mail.
Can You Opt-out of Owning a Mailbox?
There are lots of countries where having a mailbox is not that common.
Take Asia, for example – not every house there has a mailbox, but people can still receive letters. Some countries do not have strict laws about having residential mailboxes.
Generally, owning a mailbox is not necessary.
Even in countries with laws about mailboxes, you can still opt out of owning a mailbox. You need to notify the post office and remove the mailbox if your house already has one.
However, this would mean that you cannot receive official mail.
If you have no mailbox and you lose your credit card or driver’s license, it may be hard for you to get them replaced since banks and government entities only send mail if there is a mailbox.
Some people prefer not to have a mailbox to avoid receiving unwanted mail such as coupons, flyers, promotional letters, and sales brochures.
As long as your address is visible, there is no need for you to own a mailbox in most areas. It is still important to have the address visible in an emergency.
You would need emergency services like the police or firemen to be able to find your house quickly.
If you live in an apartment complex or condominium, you cannot opt out of having a mailbox, as all tenants have a mailbox assigned. The best you can do is to ignore unwanted mail.
Or you can just put a sign that says “No Flyers” or “No Residential Mail.”
Why Do Some Houses Not Have Mailboxes?
While there are countries with strict rules about the postal system, mailboxes are still not mandatory. Of course, not having a mailbox may cause some inconveniences, but it is not illegal to not have a mailbox.
Some houses do not have mailboxes mainly because of the homeowner’s preference.
Some people prefer not to have a mailbox so they will not receive unwanted letters in the mail like promotional letters, flyers, coupons, and shopping brochures.
Some people choose not to have a mailbox for their security. Having a mailbox means assigning your home address to it, and risk random people knowing your complete home address.
Some people choose to have their mail delivered to their workplace or a PO box – which is generally safer and more secure.
So to summarize this, mailboxes still exist but not everywhere. Having a mailbox is not mandatory worldwide, and it is perfectly legal not to have one.