Post office

Post office
A post office in Oxford, England, UK

A post office is a facility forming part of a postal system for the posting, receipt, sorting, handling, transmission or delivery of mail.[1]

Post offices offer mail-related services such as post office boxes, postage and packaging supplies. In addition, some post offices offer non-postal services such as passport applications and other government forms, car tax purchase, money orders, and banking services.

Automatic sorters inside a major postal facility

A post office may have a main customer service and point of sale area and many offices were directly assigned[clarification needed] to Postal code, ZIP code.

In a "sorting office" or "delivery office", mail is sorted or processed for delivery. Large open spaces for sorting mail are also sometimes known as a sorting hall or postal hall. Over time, sophisticated mail sorting and delivery equipment has been developed, including Mail Rail.

A post office in Hanga Roa, Easter Island, Chile

In Commonwealth countries, many of the larger post office buildings in capital cities used the official title of General Post Office. In parts of Europe, special Postal censorship offices were known as Cabinets Noirs. In wartime, Post Office Rifles were sometimes sent from post offices into battle to deliver messages[citation needed].

After 1900, dedicated mail exchange facilities became common and postal services colocated customer services with businesses such as newsagents or railway stations for the convenience of customers and to cut costs. As a result, many purpose-built post offices became redundant and either fell into disuse or were adaptively reused; sometimes retaining the title of Post Office prefixed by Old or Former for historical and heritage reasons.

See also

A village post office at Shere, England


External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

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