A Personal MyUS Review After 5 Years Use
Thanks for stopping by at myus review. My name is Chris and I have been using the mail and package forwarding service of MyUS.com for 5 years now and counting. With this myus review I want to give you a comprehensive overview of the services offered by myus as well as some personal feedback on those services that I have used. But first, I’ll let MyUs.com introduce themselves…
Who Are MyUS.com?
A bit of background on MyUS. They are based in Florida, and presently serve in excess of 30,000 customers who use their US shipping address and international forward packaging service.
First and foremost, MyUS consider themselves to be the best USA mail forwarding companies in the US. And personal recommendations aside, they have acquired over the years an impressive collection of awards from various industry bodies, including ‘Exporter of the Year Award’ from the U.S. Commerce Department and ‘Industry Award for Exporting Excellence’ from the Economic Development Council.
Their success has been reflected by the fact that they have been recognized as one of the 5000 Fastest Growing Private Companies in America.
Within MyUS Review, I’ll explain exactly the what they do (the services they offer) and the how the services are billed.
I think that it is safe to say that MyUS.com aim to offer US expats (US passport holders living outside of the US) and overseas non-US residents (like me) with the shopping and postal & communication benefits of a regular US resident.
Your service is paid for in two ways – a one-off set up fee and a usage fee. Both fees vary depending upon the service level that you need (more on this below). The service features can be broken down as:
- US Address
- Package & Mail Forwarding
- Personal Shopping
- Discounted US Magazine Subscriptions
- US Telephone Number & Voice Messaging
- Scan & Fax Service
Here is how it all works:
1) Your MyUS Address
You get a Florida MyUS postal address. This is not a PO Box but a proper US shipping address (a PO Box will not accept packages, only letter mail). So you can have all mail and packages sent to your personal address.
As deliveries are received they are held for you, waiting to be shipped out to you. And as your deliveries arrive at your US address, MyUS send you an email notification.
If the retailer insists on a US registered credit card as well you might think that you have a problem – but you don’t! You can use the MyUS Personal Shopping service (see below) and they will purchase on your behalf.
Note that together with a shipping MyUS address you are also provided with a US telephone number that you can give out with your order. If the number is called by a retailer, they will be given your email contact details. Alternatively you can subscribe to a US telephone number (with messaging service), but I thought that was over the top and never bothered. (And in any case a retailer has NEVER in 5 years felt the need to contact me!).
2) Package & Mail Forwarding
As part of your administration options you can specify how often you want to receive your goods. Here are your options:
- Immediate Packages are forwarded automatically as they arrive
- Immediate + Urgent Packages are forwarded automatically, on the same day they arrive
- Weekly Packages are consolidated and shipped once every week
- Bi-Weekly Packages are consolidated and shipped once every two weeks
- Monthly Packages are consolidated and shipped once every month
- Hold Shipments only sent when you submit a request (useful when you are going on vacation or a business trip).
For me I find that a monthly consolidated delivery works well.
Naturally you can specify the shipping address in your destination country. And of course you can change this any time you want.
Every time a US mail shipment is sent out to you by myus, you get billed based on the weight of the package. And you get to choose between three shipment services, depending on how soon you want your delivery to arrive.
And this is useful – if for some reason you want to add extra ‘Names’ to your account (perhaps you are sharing it with a friend, or doing someone a favor. Perhaps you run a small business and have a couple of employees / business partners, then you can add extra Names to your account for $20 per name / year).
That’s the basics of the myus postal address and international forwarding service. Other service options that you can take up from Myus.com…
3) MyUS Personal Shopping Service
Using a US Personal Shopper may sound a bit indulgent, but it has a genuine value. Namely that some online retailers will only accept orders when payment is made with a US credit card (I know, bl***y stupid!). I have faced this challenge a couple of times, not often but occasionally.
In this situation, or if you simply want to get someone else to do your shopping for you, then you can resort to your myus shopping service. Can be very handy.
All you have to do is to specify i) what product you want to purchase, ii) which online shop to buy from, and iii) how much to pay. The myus personal shopper will then make your purchase(s) and then arrange the international shipping as usual.
4) Discounted US Magazine Subscriptions
Using Myus as a portal and your MyUS postal address you can get discounted magazine subscriptions. And of course added in to your regular myus shipment.
5) US Telephone Number & Messaging Service
This taken directly from the myus.com website, since I have never used the service, I can’t add to it.
- Enhance your U.S. address with a local, Sarasota Florida telephone number.
- Personalize and change your greeting at anytime.
- Receive and store up to 20 messages
- Messages can be retrieved from any phone, anywhere in the world, at any time.
- Catalog and internet companies can contact you directly with questions or problems regarding an order.
- Correspond with friends or businesses without worrying about the time difference.
There is a set up fee and then a recurring monthly (or annual – it’s cheaper) fee.
6) Scan & Fax Service
A scan and fax service can be very useful, especially if you require visibility of time-critical information that you will receive through the post. Documents and letters can be scanned (or faxed) to you within hours of your request. Scanned documents are sent to you via email as an Adobe attachment. Faxed documents are sent via conventional fax transmission.
MyUS.com Membership Plans – ‘AKA’ What It’s Going to Cost You
Myus operate three different ‘membership plans’ (‘Standard’, ‘Premium’ and ‘Premium + Mail’) which match differing needs of it’s clients. Naturally each plan has a different cost and the cost itself has two components – a one-off set-up fee (between $10 – $35) and recurring fee ($zero – $25 per month (less if paid annually which is what I always do!)).
I don’t need to duplicate the MyUS.com website here, but in summary here is the difference between the different plans:
Standard: allows you to receive forwarded packages, but mail (letters & magazines) will not be forwarded. And packages will simply be forwarded to you internationally, packages WILL NOT be aggregated (consolidated).
Premium: packages WILL BE consolidated and forwarded to you, but mail (letters & magazines) will not be handled.
Premium + Mail: packages AND mail (letters and magazines) WILL BE consolidated and forwarded to you.
It’s a very simple plan; you just need to decide which one suits you best. This guide may help:
a) If you have a requirement for mail (letters and magazines) forwarding or mail + package forwarding then ‘Premium + Mail’ is the way to go. But if you can do without the mail forwarding, then either of the other two options will be fine…
b) If you have a couple of packages per month but no ‘mail’ requirements, then you will benefit from re-packaging, and should go for Premium. Otherwise…
c) If you have occasional package requirements only, AND those are just one or maybe two a month occasionally then the Standard package will do fine.
With any of the three Membership plans you always get a US shipping address and access to the Personal Shopping features should you need them.
And if you sign up for any of the three Membership Plans you are not wedded for life – you can swap between the plans at your leisure. For instance for 4 1/2 years I was signed up to the Premium + Mail plan. But recently, when I realized that I was not buying magazines or receiving any mail these days, I swapped over to the Premium plan – and saved myself $60 a year!
A final few thoughts. Myus offer a good reliable and comprehensive and reasonably priced US mail and package forwarding service for international (non-USA) located people. On the odd occasion that I have had to contact customer service they were very efficient – one time I had to get them to intercept and put a delay on a package that was ‘just about to go’. And they were able to put an emmediate hold on it – and actually got back to me a few minutes later to update me. Very impressive.
And in 5 years of use I have never had any issues at all. The international shipping fees are very reasonable (which gets better the more you buy & consolidate) and delivery swift.
Perhaps one of the best – and unexpected – benefits is that the duties (import tax) that I pay on ‘for personal use’ packages have dissapeared to zero!
My only small issue with myus is that their Live Help (online chat customer service) is only available US day times. Which means that for Europeans like me, we have to wait until lunchtime before we can ask a question real time. Then again, since I hardly ever have to contact them, it’s not really an issue.