2021 Plan Changes

Private Box is updating our plans to simplify the overall cost of using Private Box. Our plans will include more services, and plan prices will increase, but fees for additional services will be reduced or removed. For many customers the overall cost of using Private Box will remain roughly the same.

Private Box has primarily been a pay-as-you-go service with extra fees for each service used, for example extra fees for scanning, sending mail, or registered office. This is a reflection on how Private Box has grown over the years – adding more features, and passing on the direct costs to users. It has also been the number one feedback from customers, that it was complicated to understand the pricing, and work out the total cost they would pay.


 

Our vision is to transition to plans which have more services included – similar to popular pre-paid mobile phone subscriptions with calling minutes, sms & data included – we will include scanning, mail forwarding & more in our plans. In addition, we are removing many mail handling fees. We hope these two overarching changes will make pricing and the overall cost of using Private Box simpler to understand.

5 Free auto-scans per month were added to all plans in May 2020.

During New Zealand’s COVID-19 lockdown we made automatic scanning free, to help people & business access their mail when the mail service was unreliable, getting to the office wasn’t an option. Following that started including 5 free auto-scans per calendar month for all plans.

For the Business Plan the Registered Office Address required for a registered company in New Zealand will be included in the plan, instead of an additional service.

For Existing Customers

The new pricing will come into effect on 1st Aug 2021 (NZ time GMT +12).

We are grateful for our customers support over the years! We want to give our users a the advantage of new features, while still having the option of using their existing plan pricing.

In some cases, it may be more cost effective to update to the new pricing sooner, in which case existing customers can do so by updating the subscription in their account.

See Future Changes below for information on the service changes to Private Box Plans in 2021.

For New Customers

From today (17th November 2020 (NZ time GMT +12)), new customers who apply for a Private Box account will sign up at the new prices.

New Plan Pricing:

Personal

$19

Per 30 days
  • $54 /Quarter
  • $190 /Year
  • Up to 3 individuals 1
  • Organisation names
  • Suite Number
  • PO Box
  • Street Address
  • Registered Office
  • Phone number
  • Answering service
  • 5x Free Auto-Scans 6

Business

$49

Per 30 days
  • $144 /Quarter
  • $490 /Year
  • Up to 5 individuals 1
  • 1 organisation name 2
  • Suite Number
  • PO Box
  • Street Address
  • Registered Office
  • Phone number3
  • Answering service3
  • 5x Free Auto-Scans 6

Virtual Office

$119

Per 30 days
  • $354 /Quarter
  • $1190 /Year
  • One unique name 4
  • One unique name 4
  • None
  • PO Box
  • Street Address
  • Registered Office 5
  • Phone number
  • Answering service
  • 5x Free Auto-Scans 6

Notes:

  1. Add additional individuals for $2/month
  2. Organisations include companies and trusts. Add additional organisations for $5/month
  3. Services not included in the plan can be provided as add-ons and charged extra.
  4. With a Premium address you can have a single company name across all Private Box addresses, and have up to 25 staff names receiving mail at that company. You can have 1 alternative trading name for your Premium mailbox. Any other business names will require an additional Premium mailbox.
  5. Overseas companies require a “Principal place of business” address which incurs an an additional charge.
  6. Each month get Free Automatic Scans for 5 letters, or 50 pages, whichever comes first. Free scans are for Automatic Scanning rules, and do not include Manual Scan requests. Standard scan charges apply after plan limits are met.

Additional Services included in New Plans:

Some additional services that are being included in plans.

Additional Service Current Pricing New Pricing Plans Date of change Details
Automatic Mail Scanning $0.80 First 2 pages + $0.25 Additional pages 5 mail items (or 50 pages) free per month.
Then, $0.80 First 2 pages + $0.25 Additional pages
All plans 1 May 2020 Read more
Domestic Mail Forwarding via courier $6-10 + $0.50 per item 1 Free Courier per month (Excluding Parcels)
Then $5+ for additional mail forwarding requests, or parcels.
All plans 1st July 2021 Read more
Registered Office Addresses for NZ Company Registration $232/company/year First company free, then $232/company/year Business & Virtual Office plans Existing Customers: 1st August 2021
New Customers: 17 Nov 2020
More info
[Discount] Principal Place of Business Address for Overseas Company Registration $1495/company/year $200 off first company ($1295), then $1495/company/year Business & Virtual Office plans Existing Customers: 1st August 2021
New Customers: 17 Nov 2020
More info

1. 5 free auto-scans (or 50 pages) per month

Each calendar month get 5 free auto-scans, or 50 pages scanned (whichever comes first). This requires customers to turn on automatic scanning rules.

Manually requested scans and additional auto-scans cost $0.80 First 2 pages + $0.25 Additional pages.

When it came into effect:

All Customers 1st May 2020

2. 1 Free Mail Bundle Forwarded per Month (NZ courier only)

Each month get 1 free domestic courier delivered for letters (up to A4 size).

This does not include forwarding parcels.

When it comes into effect:

All Customers 1st July 2021

3. ‘Registered Office’ Address for 1 New Zealand Company now included in Business plan

Our Registered Office service allows New Zealand companies registered with the NZ Companies Office to list their Registered Office as a Private Box address. This is where their company documents are kept, and can be inspected by government agencies & shareholders.

This Registered Office service is now included in both the Business Plan & Virtual Office plans for one (1) New Zealand company registered with the New Zealand Companies Office. Additional Registered Offices are charged at $232/year (or $25/month).

This does not include Principal Place of Business Address service for Overseas companies registering with the NZ Companies Office. See Principal Place of Business info below.

For existing customers, the overall cost is cheaper:

  • Monthly subscription:
    • Old pricing $29.9/month + $232/year = $590.80/year
    • New pricing $49/month = $588/year
  • Annual subscription:
    • Old pricing $299/year + $232/year = $531/year
    • New pricing $490/year = $490/year

When it comes into effect:

Existing Customers 1st August 2021
New Customers 17 Nov 2020

Existing customers can take advantage of the new pricing earlier by changing their subscription in their Private Box account: secure.privatebox.co.nz/billing/subscription. When you do this please send out customer support team an email (support@privatebox.co.nz) to make sure the old additional charges for registered office are removed correctly.

4. Overseas Company ‘Principal Place of Business’ Address – Discount for first company

The Principal Place of Business Address service is for Overseas companies registering with the NZ Companies Office.

The price for this service is discounted by $200 for the first company to become $1,295NZD/year. Additional companies are still charged at $1495/year.

Existing Customers 1st August 2021
New Customers 17 Nov 2020

Additional Services Price Reductions:

Over the next year we will be rolling out changes to the additional service charges. The majority of the changes are a reduction or removal of fees.

Additional Service Current Pricing New Pricing Plans Date of change Details
Handling Fees for Domestic Mail Forwarding $1 + $0.50 per item Free All plans 1st July 2021 More info
Handling Fees for International Mail Forwarding $2-15 + $0.50 per item Free for non-parcels
$10/parcel
All plans 1st July 2021 More info
Storage fees for Letters First month free.
Then $0.30/month/letter
25 letters free
Then $0.30/month/letter
All plans 1st July 2021 More info
Receiving Parcels $1 Free All plans 1st July 2021 More info
Incorrectly Addressed item fee $4 each time $4 per sender All plans 1st July 2021 More info
Mail Collection from Private Box Offices $1 Free All plans 1st July 2021 More info
Legal Address (Address for Service) $232/company/year $500/document served Business & Virtual Office plans Existing Customers: 1st August 2021
New Customers: 17 Nov 2020
More info

Below are the changes in detail:

1. No Mail Handling Fees for Domestic Mail Forwarding

Forwarding mail in NZ will only cost the price of postage.

Currently domestic handling fees are $1.50NZD for the first item, plus $0.50NZD per each additional item.

When it comes into effect:

All Customers 1st July 2021

2. Simpler Mail Handling Fees for International Mail

International handling fees are being simplified. A $10 handling fee is applied for any mail that requires a customs declaration.

Customs declarations are required for all parcels, and letters weighing more than 200grams. The $10 fee remains the same regardless of which shipping service used – Air Mail, International Courier, or International Express Courier.

For letters and small bundles of letters under 200 grams, there are no handling fees.

When it comes into effect:

All Customers 1st July 2021

3. Free Storage for Letters – first 25 letters are stored for free

The first 25 letters are stored for free. The 26th + letters will be charged at the current rate.

Currently all letters are charged $0.30 per letter per month for storage after the first full calendar month.
For example, a letter which arrives on 15 Jan 2021, will charged a $0.30 fee for storage on 1st March 2021, and on the first of the month for each additional month it remains at Private Box. In this example February is the first full calendar month.

This change is for letters only. Parcels will still charged for storage after the first full calendar month.

When it comes into effect:

All Customers 1st July 2021

4. Receiving Parcels Free

Parcel volumes are on the increase, so to help keep costs down we are removing this fee. Currently $1 per parcel.

When it comes into effect:

All Customers 1st July 2021

5. Bad Address Fee – 1 Free Badly Addressed item per sender

Everyone hates badly addressed mail, it’s a pain for the postal system & couriers, and it takes time for our mailroom staff the find the right account to add mail to.

We realise that some senders may get it wrong, so we will be updating our notifications to let you know when it happens for a sender, so you can contact the sender to make sure they have your address correct. If mail continues to come from that sender with the wrong or incomplete address, the the $4 Badly Addressed mail fee will be applied.

When it comes into effect:

All Customers 1st July 2021

6. Free Mail Collection from Private Box’s Office

We like to meet our customers, so we are mail making collection from our mailroom in Johnsonville, Wellington free. Currently $1 per pickup.

When it comes into effect:

All Customers 1st July 2021

 

7. Legal Address (Address for Service)

Address for Service is an address that legal documents can be served, for example serving court documents & summons.  Address for Service is used by NZ Companies, Pilots, and IP registrants.

The Private Box pricing will change to a per-use basis. The Address for service will be free to list with the NZ Companies Office (previously $232/year).

However, a $500 fee will be charged when legal documents are served at the Private Box address.

When it comes into effect:

All Customers 18 Nov 2020

Current Address for Service customers will receive an pro-rata account credit for the amount remaining on their term as of 1st Jan 2021.

8. Ending the 30-Day Trial for New Customers

With Parcel forwarding between countries, more users are signing up to use Private Box to forward one or two pieces of mail. The last 5-years have brought more legal requirements on Private Box to complete identity checks on customers. This has increased the cost of creating a new account, and is not recouped if users do not keep their Private Box account beyond the 30-day trial.

When it comes into effect:

New Customers 2021

All times & dates for the changes stated above are in New Zealand time (GMT +12).

Current benefits that are staying the same

While there are many changes happening, some of our current benefits are staying the same.

• Easy to contact customer service

All customers can contact our friendly customer service team (see our contact details here). We are just an email or phone call away. Unlike other mail providers we love to hear from our customers and help them get the most out of their Private Box account.

We also provide many support articles on our support website, and some “how to” videos on our YouTube channel.

• Affordable domestic courier prices

We buy NZ courier tickets & bags in bulk, and pass on some of the discount to our customers. The price for shipping with NZ domestic courier via Private Box is the same or lower than New Zealand retail prices.

• Affordable phone services

Additionally, we source phone lines and answering services in bulk. We pass on the discount for these services to our customers. See more about our Phone Services.

• Regular updates & feature releases

We regularly release updates to our online mailroom portal which we develop right here in Wellington, New Zealand.

 

Charles D2021 Plan Changes

Comments 6

    1. Gareth Foster

      It is 5 free auto scans per month!

      We find most customers get 2-4 mail items per month so if you have auto scanning enabled you can get digital copies for these for free.

      Please do note it is up to 50 pages free per month as well or 5 letters (which ever comes first). So if you get a very large document you may exhaust the included allocation.

      On average most letters are 2 pages so we have tuned this that for most people in most situations you won’t see any extra charges for auto scanning.

  1. Jill and George Mate

    For personal mail does “No PO Box” mean PO Box 13240 Johnsonville will no longer be a valid address?

    1. Gareth Foster

      Thanks for the question.

      Anyone who uses a PO Box now can continue to do so.

      At some point in the future we will stop offering PO Box service to new personal customers. We find about 95% of our customers opt for a street address so its about making things simpler for new customers.

  2. T

    Hey guys, I what’s one of your first customers and I’ve been with you all the way – it seems, possibly up until now (?).

    I rarely get mail, but what mail I do I have really appreciated being able get through you guys.

    One of the main reasons I joined up with you in those first days was because I have a history of having been stalked (by my step-father, a remarkably unpleasant person) for many many years, since 17 years old, I’m 51 now).

    Your service allows me a sense of safety. Looking at the new pricing structure however, unless I’m misreading the situation I’m pretty certain I won’t currently be able to afford that safety anymore.

    Is there still an affordable place for me in your new structure Gareth?

    1. Gareth Foster

      Thanks for your comment & question.

      Are you still using your account for business purposes? If so – you will be charged the current business rate of $490 per year.

      If you are no longer receiving business mail it would be a good idea to change your mailbox type to personal (which is $190 per year).

      A quick review of your account does look like you will get benefit from:
      – The additional free storage allowance for letters
      – Free auto scanning
      So there will be *some* savings to be had.

      Please do note as this is a public forum I have edited your comment to remove some details.

      Perhaps get in touch via https://www.privatebox.co.nz/contact-us/ if you would like to make any changes to your account type (or discuss further).

Leave a Reply to markp Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *