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How does poste restante work?

Travel Forums Australia / New Zealand & The Pacific How does poste restante work?

1. Posted by archester (Budding Member 2 posts) 12y

archester has indicated that this thread is about England

I'm going to Sydney in a couple of weeks (hopefully for a year) and will need a postal address in order to get my Tax File Number but will probably be moving around hostels when I first arrive so won't have a fixed address. As such could I use poste restante? Does anyone know what it is exactly and how much it costs? Are you given a postal address? Is there a website with any information on it?
Thanks for any help

2. Posted by stevieh (Respected Member 612 posts) 12y

Hi Archie,
Check this out

3. Posted by New Guy (Full Member 22 posts) 12y

That might be good advice in the UK Stevieh, but if you want local info here in Australia Archester, try this rather convoluted way of locating "Poste Restantes":

1. Click on this:

2. Select the state or territory where you plan on collecting your mail from the drop-down menu

3. Type in the appropriate state or territory capital from the following in the "Town or Suburb" box:
a. ACT - Canberra
b. NSW - Sydney
c. NT - Darwin
d. QLD - Brisbane
e. SA - Adelaide
f. TAS - Hobart
g. VIC - Melbourne
h. WA - Perth, and hit the "Search" button.

4. In most cases you will now be presented with several alternatives. Select the one that includes the letters "GPO" (General Post Office) in the title by clicking on the "Identifier" icon.

5. You will now be presented with a separate box showing all the relevant details e.g. for Brisbane, QLD it is "Outlet Name: BRISBANE GPO, Address: 261 QUEEN ST, Suburb: BRISBANE QLD, State: QLD,
Postcode: 4000. You're almost there now (!) .....

6. According to the only reference I could find to "Restante" on the entire Australia Post website search function, you should address mail thus:

"Form of address for counter mail delivery -Where Letters are addressed for collection at a post office (or Poste Restante in the International Post), the address must include the FAMILY name and the GIVEN name or INITIALS of the addressee. Initials only, figures, given names only, fictitious names or codes must NOT be used".


4. Posted by stevieh (Respected Member 612 posts) 12y

Hi gents,
The link was supposed to explain the much simpler method of using Poste Restante - anywhere in the world.
You address things

FAMILY NAME (in capitals), First Name
Poste Restante

...and that's it.
There's no need to bother your relatives with detailed addresses.
If you do this, the letters/parcels will be sent to the MAIN Post Office in the given city. All you have to do when you arrive is find out where that is. Piece of cake.
Worked for me in Brisbane.
The Royal Mail does send a few letters outside the UK!;)

5. Posted by fimbria25 (Full Member 120 posts) 12y

So you would write something like this?:

Poste Restante

Does it cost anything at all to collect?

6. Posted by stevieh (Respected Member 612 posts) 12y

Hi Fimbra,
Yes, but if you want to keep it simple for your friends and relatives all you need is 'Sydney'. Then it's down to you to ask which is the main GPO in Sydney to pick it up from.
There's no charge in Oz or UK.:)

Post 7 was removed by a moderator
8. Posted by lynshumack (First Time Poster 1 posts) 5y

Hey, Easy, Australia Post delivers! I rocked in to the GPO in Melbourne, parked the RV out the front (can you believe that at 4pm on a Friday afternoon!), was directed across the road to the general office outlet and Poste Restante counter (opposite the retail shop), showed ID and was gracefully delivered my packaged envelope containing my month's mail. They suggested in future it be addressed NAME, POSTE RESTANTE, GPO Box XXXX, CAPITAL CITY, COUNTRY. But all good. Fabulous secret revealed.