How to Fill Out an Envelope

The Proper Way to Address and Fill Out an Envelope

Dear Asensio,

For many of us, filling out an envelope seems like a straightforward task. However, it is crucial to do it correctly to avoid delays or even the loss of your precious mail. Whether you are sending a letter to a friend, family member, or business, this journal article will guide you on how to properly fill out an envelope.


Envelopes are essential items that help us convey messages to our loved ones or deliver important documents. Filling out an envelope may seem like an easy task, but there is more to it than writing the name and address of the recipient. In this section, we will discuss the different types of envelopes and their uses, the importance of proper envelope address formatting, and the materials you will need to fill out an envelope.

Types of Envelopes and Their Uses

Envelopes come in various sizes and shapes to meet different needs. The type of envelope you choose depends on the type of mail you are sending. The most common types of envelopes are:

Envelope Type Size Use
Standard White Envelope 4 1/8″ x 9 1/2″ For general correspondence, such as letters and bills.
Window Envelope 4 1/8″ x 9 1/2″ For mailing letters that require the address to show through a window.
Manila Envelope 9″ x 12″ For mailing manuscripts, photographs, and small packages.
Bubble Mailer Varies For mailing items that need extra protection, such as CDs, DVDs, and small fragile items.

Proper Envelope Address Formatting

Address formatting is crucial to ensure your mail gets to the intended recipient on time. The following are the standard address formatting rules:

Recipient’s Name: Write the recipient’s name in the center of the envelope. Use the full name, including title (Mr., Mrs., Miss, Ms.).

Street Address: Write the street address on the next line. Use proper abbreviations for words like “Street” (St.), “Road” (Rd.), and “Avenue” (Ave.).

City, State, and ZIP code: Write the city, state, and ZIP code on the third line, with the state abbreviated to two letters and the ZIP code at the end.

Here is an example of a properly formatted address:

Mr. John Doe
123 Main St.
Anytown, CA 12345

Materials You Will Need to Fill Out an Envelope

You will need the following materials to fill out an envelope:

  • An envelope
  • A pen with black ink
  • The recipient’s name and address
  • Return address (optional)
  • Stamps

How to Fill Out an Envelope

Now that you know the basics let’s dive into how to fill out an envelope correctly. Follow these simple steps:

Step 1: Write the Recipient’s Name and Address

Write the recipient’s name and address in the center of the envelope. Make sure you follow the proper address format.

Step 2: Include a Return Address (Optional)

If you want the receiver to know who sent the mail, include your return address’s name and address in the upper left corner of the envelope.

Step 3: Affix Stamps to the Envelope

Affix the necessary amount of stamps to the upper right corner of the envelope. Make sure the stamps cover the cost of mailing the letter or package.

Step 4: Seal the Envelope

After you have written the recipient’s name and address, included a return address (if desired), and affixed postage, you can seal the envelope. Lick the glue on the flap or use a moistened sponge to seal the envelope.

Step 5: Mail the Envelope

Write your return address on the back of the envelope (optional), then take it to the post office or drop it in a mailbox.


Q: What do I do if I make a mistake on the envelope?

A: If you make a mistake while filling out the envelope, do not try to correct it by crossing it out or using correction fluid. Instead, use another envelope to avoid any confusion.

Q: Can I use pencil to fill out the envelope?

A: No, use black ink when filling out the envelope. Pencil is not suitable as it may smudge or fade over time.

Q: Can I reuse an envelope that has been previously used?

A: It is not recommended to reuse envelopes that have been previously used. It may cause confusion about the destination or cause delays in delivery.

Q: Can I use decorative or colored envelopes to mail my letter?

A: Yes, but make sure that the recipient’s name and address can still be read clearly. It is recommended to use light-colored envelopes with black ink.

Q: How do I know how many stamps to use?

A: The number of stamps required depends on the weight, size, and destination of the envelope. The post office can help you determine how many stamps you need to send your mail.

Q: Where can I buy stamps?

A: You can buy stamps at the post office, online, or in some stores that sell postal items, like grocery stores or pharmacies.

Q: How long does it typically take for my mail to be delivered?

A: Delivery times vary depending on the destination, the type of mail service you use, and other factors. For example, First-Class Mail typically takes 1-3 business days for delivery within the United States.

Q: Can I track my mail?

A: Yes, you can track your mail by using tracking services provided by the post office or private shipping companies.

Q: What should I do if my mail gets lost or damaged?

A: If your mail gets lost or damaged, you can file a claim with the post office or shipping company. Make sure you keep a copy of the receipt and all other relevant documents.

Q: Can I send cash or other valuables through the mail?

A: It is not recommended to send cash or other valuables through the mail. Use a more secure method, like a money order or certified mail.

Q: Can I send a letter without an envelope?

A: It is not recommended to send a letter without an envelope as it may get lost or damaged. Use an envelope to ensure that your letter reaches its destination safely.

Q: Can I use abbreviations when filling out the envelope?

A: Yes, you can use proper abbreviations for words like “Street” (St.), “Road” (Rd.), and “Avenue” (Ave.).

Q: What is the difference between registered mail and certified mail?

A: Registered mail is the most secure mail service and requires a signature upon delivery. Certified mail requires a signature upon delivery and provides a record of delivery.

Q: How do I address an envelope to a business or organization?

A: Write the name of the business or organization on the first line, followed by the street address, city, state, and ZIP code.


In conclusion, filling out an envelope correctly is essential to ensure that your mail reaches its destination safely and on time. In this article, we have covered the different types of envelopes and their uses, the importance of proper envelope address formatting, and the materials you will need to fill out an envelope. We have also provided step-by-step instructions on how to fill out an envelope and answered some frequently asked questions. We hope this article has been informative and helpful.

So, Asensio, the next time you need to send a letter or package, use these tips to make sure your mail arrives at its destination safely and on time.

Closing Statement with Disclaimer

This article is for informational purposes only. While we have made every effort to provide accurate and up-to-date information, we make no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, about the completeness, accuracy, reliability, suitability, or availability with respect to the information contained in this article. Any reliance you place on such information is therefore strictly at your own risk.

In no event will we be liable for any loss or damage, including without limitation, indirect or consequential loss or damage, or any loss or damage whatsoever arising from the use of this article.

Lastly, we encourage our readers to follow all postal regulations when mailing anything.