How To Address a Large Envelope


January 10, 2023

Do you want to know how to properly address a large envelope? This article will serve as a guide on how to address this type of envelope. 

The article will also discuss the things to keep in mind while addressing an envelope and how the return address of a large envelope is formatted.

If you are sending a large envelope and need to know the location of your local post office, you can visit

The website provides information about all 31,330 post offices in the United States and gives you the location of the nearest one in your area.

How To Mail Large Envelopes

You can send large envelopes without going to the post office if you have stamps. You can get a postage meter or print stamps online.

After writing your letter, address your envelope and attach the postage stamp upper right-hand corner. Then drop the letter in a mailbox or hand it to your mail carrier.

When you send a large envelope within the United States, it generally takes three business days to arrive.

Things To Keep In Mind While Addressing an Envelope

If you are still familiarizing yourself with the guidelines for addressing a letter, you will need to consider some important factors.

Here are some things to consider when addressing an envelope:

  1. Write your complete address. Begin addressing the envelope by printing or writing your address in the upper-left corner on the front side.

The sender’s address is also called the return address. The post office will use this address if the recipient’s address is undeliverable.

  1. Write the recipient’s address correctly. Center the address on the envelope.

While it is not necessary to measure the exact center of the envelope, try to get as close as possible.

You should write the address in the center of the envelope, not near the edge.

  1. Affix the correct postage stamp. Postage stamps are an essential part of every mail to ensure it’s successfully delivered.

Different stamps are available at the post office, or online prices vary according to postage value, shipping costs, and delivery time frame.

What Are the Costs of Mailing a Large Envelope?

The cost of a stamp for large envelopes is $0.70. If the mail you are sending is large enough to qualify as an envelope, it will only cost you postage.

Large envelopes have an 11 ½ length, 6⅛” height, and ¼” thickness.

An envelope weighing more than 13oz will be considered a package and subject to parcel shipping rates.

What Information To Include

The U.S. Postal Service requires that all letters and packages include specific address information to be delivered successfully.

Return Address

Place your address in the upper left corner of the front of the envelope. The return address on the envelope includes your name and complete mailing address.

Some mail can be delivered without a return address. However, services like Priority Mail Express requires you to have this address printed on your envelope.

Postal services suggest you include a return address on any package you mail, including large envelopes, to ensure that your letter or parcel will be returned to you if it cannot be delivered or is damaged during shipping.

Envelope Format for Return Addresses

Place the return address in the upper-left corner of your envelope and include a secondary line for the address and PO box number.

Abbreviations such as ST (street), AVE (Avenue), RD (Road), or PO(post office) are acceptable. Note that periods are not needed after these abbreviations.

Mail is scanned and sorted electronically. Therefore, it is best to use only capital letters and eliminate punctuation.

Put the city and state in a separate line, usually the third line. Write out the city’s full name, like “Los Angeles,” instead of using the abbreviation “L.A.”

You should also use a standard two-letter abbreviation for the state. Below is a sample of a Return address:

[Your full name]

[Your street number and your street name]

[Your city, state, and ZIP code]





Recipient Name

Write the recipient’s address, as you would on an envelope for a letter. To make the address easier to read, write it legibly.

Always check to ensure that you have correctly written the recipient’s name and address, so your letter arrives at its intended destination.

Envelope Format for Recipient Addresses

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, you will write the recipient’s name, street address, city, and ZIP code. Here is 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 residences with street numbers.

When you mail your letter, add additional information in the secondary address line.

Here is 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

Name of Organization

When writing to a department rather than 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

Mailing to a Specific Individual

If you are mailing a letter to a business but want the letter delivered directly to one person who works there, you should place the person’s name in the first line of the address block.

You may use the abbreviation “ATTN,” but it is not required. Here is a sample format:

[Recipient Name]

[Business’s name]

[Recipient street number and name]

[Recipient city, state, and ZIP code]










Extra Services

Extra services should be placed with the address labels at the top of the recipient’s address. This information should be to the right of your return address or the left side of your stamps.


Attach the correct postage amount to each mail you send using stamps or a postage meter. 

Street Address

You should include a street address or the P.O. box number, but not both. If there is also a directional in the address, such as NW for Northwest, include this information.

Apartment or Suite Number

You can ensure that your letter is delivered by providing the correct suite or apartment number.

City, State, and ZIP Code

Visit or call 1-800-ASK-USPS to find the proper spelling of a city name or ZIP code. This code identifies the correct delivery point for your mail.


The accuracy of your address determines how long it takes for the mail to reach its destination.


Use the front side of your envelope and print the return and the recipient’s address. You should write the addresses parallel to the longest side of the envelope.

Landscape Orientation

For large envelopes, the post office prefers them in landscape orientation.

The return address should go in the top left corner of a larger envelope, just as it would on a smaller envelope.

Write your 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 an envelope.

The final line of the delivery address should be no more than half an inch from the bottom edge of an envelope.

Portrait Orientation

Postal services prefer that delivery addresses be near the top of the large envelope when mailed in portrait orientation. Your address is placed in the upper left corner.

Put the delivery address at least one inch below and to the right of where you put your return address.

On vertically oriented business envelopes, the delivery address should be near the top of the envelope while keeping a one-inch space between it and where you would place your return address.


Write or print legibly enough that the address is readable from a distance of at least one arm’s length. Remember not to use commas or periods.

Using Labels

Large envelopes have spaces for return and delivery addresses.

For some types of mail, the post office requires you to use a specially labeled form with room for both addresses.

When you are writing on labels on envelopes, put your address in the upper left corner and the delivery address in the lower right section.

Most labels indicate these placements with “From” and “To.”

Put the recipient’s address at least one inch to the right and below the return address. 

Attach the label as neatly as possible to an envelope where you usually write a recipient’s address.

Military Mail

Military addresses must be written in a specific format and manner. Specific codes are used instead of city and state.

While the ZIP code remains unchanged, a four-digit code is often necessary. 

The first line should contain the recipient’s title, name, and department. The number written on the second line is their unit or squadron designation.

The third line of the address should designate where the individual is stationed, such as APO (Air/Army Post Office), FPO (Fleet Post Office), or DPO (Diplomatic Post Office).

The third line should also include the country name or abbreviation of the nation in which their duty station is located.

The last line should contain a complete postal ZIP code, which may or may not include four extra digits.

Here is an example:

[Recipient’s rank and full name]

[Unit or squadron number]

[APO or FPO, abbreviation of nation and postal code]



UNIT 123 BOX 34

DPO AA 11223


A list of standard abbreviations for state names, street names, and other terms can be found online.

Affix a Postage Stamp

Postage stamps are essential to the mailing process, as they ensure that mail is delivered. Several stamps can be bought from the post office or purchased online at a discount.

The amount of postage varies depending on the type of stamp used, the distance shipped, and other factors such as the weight or size of the letter.

You can use Forever stamps to your mail piece and place an additional ounce of postage if you need to get the right amount.

What Are Large Envelopes

Flats or large envelopes usually contain transport magazines, CDs, marketing materials, and legal documents.

These envelopes can also hold a standard size piece of paper (8½ x 11) unfolded.

Any envelope larger than 12” tall, 15” long, or ¾ inches thick is considered a package by the United States Postal Service. The package is then subject to prices depending on its weight.


  1. Can I put a 9×12 envelope in the mailbox?

Mail pieces that weigh more than 10oz or are more than half an inch thick and contain only postage stamps should be dropped off at a retail counter in the post office.

Postal regulations require that envelopes for mailing letters should be rectangular and made of paper.

  1. What is the right way to address a 9×12 envelope?

When addressing an envelope that measures 9 inches by 12 inches, write the recipient’s address in the center, and in the upper left corner of the envelope, print your mailing address. 

  1. How to address Manila envelopes

On a Manila envelope, address it as you would any business letter.

Remember to write your address and the recipient’s address on the same side of the envelope.

  1. How do you address an oversized envelope?

Flats or oversized letters are considered large envelopes. 

Although they may seem larger than a standard envelope, they are still addressed similarly.