updated 5/11/2005 7:11:37 PM ET 2005-05-11T23:11:37

A new premium mail forwarding service for people away from home for long periods will be launched in August, the Postal Service said Wednesday.

The service is designed for people who will be away for more than two weeks and up to a year, officials said.

They expect the service to be valuable to traveling business executives, military personnel, college students, summer renters and "snow birds" who spend their winters in warm locations.

The new service doesn't replace traditional forwarding or change-of-address procedures, but provides a temporary way for people to get their mail quickly at a new location.

With premium mail forwarding, postal workers collect the individual's mail, box it and send it to the temporary address once a week by priority mail. Express mail, first-class mail or priority mail packages too large to fit inside the premium forwarding service package are rerouted separately at no additional charge.

Individuals must register for premium forwarding at the post office serving their primary address. There will be a $10 enrollment charge and a $10 charge for each weekly shipment of mail.

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