How to Properly Address a Large Envelope

Are you unsure about the correct way to address a large envelope? Look no further! This comprehensive guide will walk you through the process, ensuring that your envelope is addressed correctly. We’ll also discuss important tips to keep in mind while addressing envelopes and cover the correct format for the return address on a large envelope.

How to Send Large Envelopes

Did you know that you can send large envelopes without even stepping foot in the post office? That’s right! If you have stamps, you can easily send your envelope from the comfort of your own home. You can either use a postage meter or print stamps online. Once you’ve written your letter, simply address the envelope and affix the postage stamp to the upper right-hand corner. Then, drop your letter in a mailbox or hand it to your mail carrier. It’s that easy! And when sending a large envelope within the United States, you can expect it to arrive within three business days.

Important Considerations for Addressing an Envelope

If you’re still getting the hang of addressing envelopes, there are a few key factors to consider. Let’s go over them:

  1. Write your complete address: Begin by printing or writing your address in the upper-left corner on the front side of the envelope. This is also known as the return address. The post office will use this address if the recipient’s address is undeliverable.
  2. Write the recipient’s address correctly: Center the recipient’s address on the envelope. Although you don’t need to measure the exact center, try to get as close as possible. Remember to write the address in the center of the envelope, not near the edge.
  3. Affix the correct postage stamp: Postage stamps are crucial to ensure successful delivery of your mail. You can purchase different stamps at the post office or online, with prices varying based on postage value, shipping costs, and delivery time frame.

What Does It Cost to Mail a Large Envelope?

The cost of a stamp for large envelopes is $0.70. If your mail qualifies as an envelope, you will only need to pay for postage. To be classified as an envelope, it should have dimensions of 11 ½ inches in length, 6⅛ inches in height, and ¼ inch in thickness. If your envelope weighs more than 13 ounces, it will be considered a package and subject to parcel shipping rates.

The Importance of Including the Right Information

To ensure successful delivery, every letter and package must include specific address information. Let’s take a look at the different types of addresses.

Return Address

Place your address in the upper left corner of the front of the envelope. The return address includes your name and complete mailing address. While some mail can be delivered without a return address, services like Priority Mail Express require it to be printed on your envelope. Including a return address on any package, including large envelopes, ensures that your letter or parcel will be returned if it cannot be delivered or is damaged during shipping.

For the return address format, place it in the upper-left corner of the envelope. You can use abbreviations like ST (street), AVE (Avenue), RD (Road), or PO (post office), but remember that periods are not needed after these abbreviations. Use capital letters and eliminate punctuation since mail is scanned and sorted electronically. Put the city and state in a separate line, typically the third line, and write out the city’s full name instead of using abbreviations. Here’s a sample return address format:

[Your full name]
[Your street number and street name]
[Your city, state, and ZIP code]



Recipient Name

Write the recipient’s address as you would on a letter envelope. Ensure that you write the recipient’s name and address legibly to ensure accurate delivery.

For the recipient address format, imagine a rectangle in the center of the Manila envelope. This is where you will list the name and address of the receiver of your letter. On three consecutive lines, write the recipient’s name, street address, city, and ZIP code. Here’s a sample address format:

[Recipient Name]
[Recipient street number and name]
[Recipient city, state, and ZIP code]


WYLIE, TX, 97860

Student Mailing Address

College dorms have unique addresses similar to those of residences with street numbers. When mailing your letter, include additional information on the secondary address line.

Here’s an example of how to format an address for college dormitories:

[Recipient name]
[Recipient college street number and name]
[Dormitory hall name and room number]
[Recipient city, state, and ZIP code]


BOSTON, MA, 03222

Addressing an Organization

When writing to a department instead of an individual, the envelope should read:

  • Company name
  • The abbreviation “Attn” may be followed by a colon and the department name
  • Company’s mailing address


[Attn: department name]
[Recipient street number and name]
[Recipient city, state, and ZIP code]


REDDING, CA, 99556

If you’re mailing a letter to a business but want it delivered directly to a specific person who works there, place the person’s name on the first line of the address block. You may use the abbreviation “ATTN,” but it is not required. Here’s a sample format:

[Recipient Name]
[Business’s name]
[Recipient street number and name]
[Recipient city, state, and ZIP code]




Extra Services, Postage, Street Address, Apartment or Suite Number, City, State, and ZIP Code

To include extra services, place the information with the address labels at the top of the recipient’s address. Affix the correct postage amount to each mail using stamps or a postage meter. Include either a street address or a P.O. box number, but not both. If your address includes a directional (e.g., NW for Northwest), include this information. You can ensure successful delivery by providing the correct suite or apartment number. Visit or call 1-800-ASK-USPS to find the proper spelling of city names or ZIP codes, which identify the correct delivery point for your mail.

Addressing Your Envelope

The accuracy of your address is crucial for prompt mail delivery. Here are some essential things to keep in mind:

  • Use the front side of your envelope and print both the return and recipient’s address. Write the addresses parallel to the longest side of the envelope.
  • For large envelopes, the post office prefers a landscape orientation. Place the return address in the top left corner, just like you would on a smaller envelope. Write the delivery address one inch underneath and to the right of your address. Ideally, the delivery address should be positioned about one inch from the right edge of the envelope, with the final line no more than half an inch from the bottom edge. However, if mailing in portrait orientation, place the delivery address near the top of the envelope, keeping a one-inch space between it and the return address.

Remember to write or print legibly enough that the address is readable from at least one arm’s length away. Avoid using commas or periods. If using labels, put your address in the upper left corner and the delivery address in the lower right section, as indicated by “From” and “To.” On large envelopes, place the recipient’s address at least one inch to the right and below the return address. Neatly attach the label to the envelope where you would usually write a recipient’s address.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Can I put a 9×12 envelope in the mailbox?
    Mail pieces weighing more than 10 ounces or exceeding half an inch in thickness and containing only postage stamps should be dropped off at a retail counter in the post office. Postal regulations specify that envelopes for mailing letters should be rectangular and made of paper.
  2. What is the right way to address a 9×12 envelope?
    When addressing a 9×12 envelope, write the recipient’s address in the center and print your mailing address in the upper left corner of the envelope.
  3. How do you address Manila envelopes?
    Address a Manila envelope just like you would any business letter. Remember to write both your address and the recipient’s address on the same side of the envelope.
  4. How do you address an oversized envelope?
    Flats or oversized letters, which are considered large envelopes, are addressed similarly to standard envelopes. Although they may be larger, the format remains the same.

Remember to follow these guidelines for properly addressing large envelopes. With the right address and correct postage, your mail will reach its intended destination smoothly and efficiently!