How to address an envelope: Your guide to sending a letter through the US Postal Service

Sending mail can be quite a task.

Maybe you want to put a personal touch on your communication with a handwritten letter to a loved one. After all, 70% of consumers say direct mail is more personal than interacting digitally.

Whatever your reason for sending mail, here’s how to make sure your letter doesn’t get lost in the 143 billion pieces of mail the U.S. Postal Service says it sorts each year.

How to address an envelope to mail within the United States

Even if seems tedious, addressing an envelope is simple.

On the side without the fold tab, write the address to which you’d like to send your mail in the center of the envelope in this format:

  • RECIPIENT NAME
  • STREET ADDRESS
  • APARTMENT/PO BOX NUMBER (if applicable)
  • CITY, STATE, AND ZIP CODE
  • COUNTRY

If you’re sending mail within the United States, it’s not required to put the country, but it never hurts to include this information.

On the same side of the envelope, write your return address with your own information in the top left corner in the same order as the recipient information above.

The Spruce suggests using black or blue ink and not using cursive writing. Print clearly to avoid having your letter go to the wrong address.

Your stamp goes in the top right corner. According to USPS, you can send any envelope weighing 1 ounce or less with just one Forever Stamp. Heavier parcels may require more stamps.

How to address an envelope for a business letter

To address a business envelope, simply add the name of the business between the recipient’s name and the street address, according to The Spruce.

It should look like this:

  • RECIPIENT/DEPARTMENT NAME
  • BUSINESS NAME
  • STREET ADDRESS
  • APARTMENT/PO BOX NUMBER (if applicable)
  • CITY, STATE, AND ZIP CODE
  • COUNTRY

As always, your return address should go in the upper left hand corner of the envelope.

According to Indeed, it is also customary to include your return address, email address and phone number, as well as the recipient’s address, in the top left corner of the letter.

How to address an envelope being sent outside the USA

According to the United States Postal Service, addressing an envelope for international mailing is very similar to mailing domestically. The information should go in this order, in all capital letters, written legibly with a pen or typewritten, according to the USPS.

  • RECIPIENT’S FULL LEGAL NAME
  • STREET ADDRESS OR PO BOX NUMBER
  • CITY/TOWN, AS WELL AS ANY OTHER SUBDIVISION (province, state, county, etc.) AND THE POSTAL CODE IF YOU KNOW IT
  • COUNTRY NAME (in English)

In the top left corner, you need a complete return address in the same format.

This article written by Jacob Livesay, USA TODAY

Source: How to address an envelope: Your guide to sending a letter through the US Postal Service (msn.com)

Author: Dennis Hickey

There are no limits to success to those who never stop learning. Learning will also nourish your personal growth. I hope you enjoy this website and visit often so you keep learning and growing too!

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