How To Write An Informal Letter – Format,Definition,Examples, Writing Tips for Good Start
What Is An Informal Letter?
Letter writing is a crucial skill that should be own by each and every student. There is a wide significance of writing, also we can say black and white communication, for both formal and informal aspects. In this entire article, we are going to discuss informal letters and what are the methods to write the most efficient informal letters and all the necessary tips. So here we begin!
The informal letter that is also known as friendly or personal letters that are written by a person to his or her family or friends. The informal letters are always written in personal manner. An informal letter can be written to any person who is sharing a non-professional relationship with you. This can also be written to your co-employees and business partners with whom you share a friendly relationship.
Certain formatting rules are applied to informal letters to draw a line between formal and informal letters. There are varieties of purposes for which formal letters can be used:
- For asking questions
- For requesting information
- To congratulate the recipient
- Forgiving some sort of advice
- Transmitting news, messages, etc.
Informal i.e. personal letters should be written to the person with whom you are close and share a special bond such as parents, siblings, friends, etc. Informal letters can be written in a friendly manner and the writer can use emotional or personal tone. The language that is used to write informal letters is casual. Because it is the means of personal communication, there is no need to pursue any particular conventions, pattern or format. The writer can write these types of letters according to their own wish and necessity of the circumstances. The writing style or pattern of informal letters may vary depending on the country for which you belong to.
Useful topics for writing an informal letter for different school and college students:
- Admitting a mistake
- Requesting for help
- Congratulating a friend or relative
- Reminding a friend or relative
- Thanking a friend or relative
- Apologizing to a friend or relative
- Advising a friend or relative
- Inviting a friend or relative
- Informal letter for birthday wishing
Types Of Informal Letters:
There are certain specific types of informal (application letter) letters and here we will discuss that:
- Type 1 – A Thank-you letter: This letter is written by the person to thank any person for providing a certain kind of help etc. The Thank-you letter should have any of the following starting:
Thank you letter starting Example
- Thank you for….
- It looks/ they look great/ wonderful etc.
- I really needed….
- You are so…
- Type 2 – An invitation letter: This letter is written by the person to send an invitation for any occasion or anything else. An invitation letter should have any of the following starting:
Example of Invitation letter starting
- Would you like to come to …on… (date) at…(time)/
- You are invited to…
- I will be waiting for you…
- I can hardly wait for…
- I hope you will be able to come
- Type 3 – A letter of acceptance: This letter is written in response to an invitation letter or any other letter by the recipient. It shows that the recipient has received the letter and accepted or denied the invitation. A letter of acceptance should have any of the following starting:
Example of Acceptance letter starting
- Your invitation to ….is great!
- Of course, I will be there!
- I will come.
- I am looking forward to seeing you.
- Type 4 – A letter of regret: This letter is written by the person to show sorrow or regret for something or can be written by the recipient in response to the letter of invitation with the regret of not accepting the invitation. A letter of regret should have any of the following starting:
Example of Regret letter starting
- Your invitation to … sounds exciting.
- Unfortunately … (say you can’t arrive and explain why).
- Thank you for the invitation.
- Type 5 – A letter of apology: This letter is written by the person to apologize for some rude behavior or something awful. A letter of apology should have any of the following starting:
Example of Regret letter starting
- I didn’t mean to be rude.
- I am so sorry to hurt your feelings.
- I was in an awful mood.
- I wanted to send this letter to tell you how apologetic I am feeling for my behavior.
- I do hope you can forgive me.
This is all for the types of informal letters. Now we will move forward to understand other aspects of informal letter writings.
Difference Between Formal And Informal Letters:
- A semi-informal letter or an informal letter should be written in a personal manner, whereas formal letters are written in a professional manner.
- Informal letters are written to relatives, friends, and person with whom you are close, whereas formal letters are written to colleagues, bosses, managers and for other person related to office or business.
- Informal letters are written to the person with whom they writers have a non-professional relationship, whereas formal letters are written to the person with whom the writer has a professional relationship.
- The informal letters are used to be crafted in an unprofessional tone and the writer can use the language of their choice, whereas the formal letters are used to be crafted by using a professional tone and the writer should use polite and official language.
- Considering the length, the length of an informal letter is precise that does not include any insignificant information, whereas the length of the formal letter can be lengthier depending on the writer’s wish.
- Informal letters are written to acquaintance, relatives, friends etc, whereas formal letters are written to professionals, college or universities, clients, customers, suppliers, partners, etc.
- There is no prescribed format for writing informal letters, whereas formal letters should be written in the prescribed format only.
- One can write the Informal letters in 1st, 2nd, and 3rd person, whereas formal letters are written in first and third persons.
- Informal letters should be written in the active voice, whereas formal letters are written in the passive voice.
- The sentences to be structured in informal letters should be small and easy, whereas the sentences to be structured formal letters should be lengthy and intricate.
- The length of an informal letter may be either large or concise, whereas the length of the formal letter is concise.
- Contractions and abbreviations can be used in informal letters, whereas it should be avoided informal letters.
Format Of Informal Letter:
There is no predefined format or structure to write an informal letter. But there is normal pattern that is to be followed by the writer. There are also certain conventions to follow. Here we will discuss that pattern to help you draft an effective informal letter:
- Address: The first thing to include in your informal letter is the address. The writer should write his or her address. The appropriate place to include the address is the left corner at the top of the page. The writer should put the exact and full address. Even if you are writing the letter to your close ones, it is necessary to write the address to provide ease to the reader to reply back. If the recipient belongs to another country, also mention your country name in the address.
The address should be written in the following manner:
House number and street number
Town and city
Country (if applicable)
- Date: Mention date just following the address. It helps the reader to get the knowledge that when the writer has written the letter. This can help the reader to generate a better relationship with the contents of the letter.
Write the date in the following manner according to British English;
Day month, year
26 April 2016
The beginning letter of the month should always be in capital letter.
- Greeting: You can write the greeting in an informal manner, as you are familiar with the recipient of the letter. If the recipient of the letter is your friend or any person similar to your age, the greetings can be provided to them by using their first name such as ‘Dear Nishtha’. If the recipient of the letter is any of your relatives such as an uncle, aunt, father, mother, etc you can provide the greeting by using phrases such as ‘Dear Mom’. Similarly, if the recipient of the letter is an elder person, the person you respect so much then you can address them by using Mr or Mrs. As an example, if you are writing an informal letter to congratulate your teacher, you can address by using ‘Dear Mrs. Nishtha’.
- Introduction paragraph: Here we start writing the actual letter. The paragraph of the introduction should be written to create and hold the tone for the entire letter. You can begin writing the letter by asking the recipient about their well-being. Or you might write that your health and spirits will be great when you receive the letter. To begin writing an informal letter, you should use a relaxed and calming tone. The letter should not start formal or direct such as we use in business letters.
- Body of the letter: The entire letter should prefer a friendly attitude. The language and wording might change according to the writer and to whom you are writing. You can be casual and flippant while writing to a friend. But you should use the extreme respect and considerate attitude while writing to an elderly person.
If you are confused about the tone of the letter, then you can decide by remembering how you talk to that person in an oral talk. Put similar sentiments and sentence structure in the letter.
- Conclusion: The conclusion paragraph should contain the overall purpose for writing the letter. You can say it as the summarization of the letter. Say a meaningful and affectionate goodbye to the reader. Always remember to give the replying back invitation to the reader. It depicts that you are intended to keep the conversation going on.
General closing sentences as per British English:
Send my love to…
See you soon!
I look forward to hearing from you…
I can’t hear back from you.
- Signature: There is no need to put a signature in the informal letter. Since they do not follow a strict format, you may sign off as you please. The normally used phrases for signing off the letter are:
Lots of Love,
All the best,
You can select anyone that looks appropriate and then simply sign your name below the greeting.
How Do You Start An Informal Letter:
Pro Tips: There are certain specific things to remember to start an informal letter:
- Address: The first thing to include in the informal letter is the address of the sender. The appropriate place to locate the address top left corner of the page. It is necessary to put the address as if the recipient has your address or not in case they want to reply back. While sending the letter to other countries, including the country of residence too, along with your address.
The appropriate format of the address is:
- Number of the street and its name
- City, state and postal code
1555 N. Grand Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90015
- Date: The place to locate the date is below the address. The general manner to design the date is a month, day, and year. In some cases, writing the only month and date is enough. If you are writing the letter in English, the month’s name should always be in capital letters, but there are certain distinctions in the structure of the date between American English and British English. The format to write the date in both American and British format are:
|Format||British English||American English|
|A||22nd November 2011||November 22nd, 2011|
|B||22 November 2011||November 22, 2011|
How To Write An Informal Letter:
An informal letter is easy to write as compared to a formal letter because in informal letters you need to follow very few rules. Just put your address, address the person to whom you are writing, write the body paragraph, and lastly sign your name at the bottom of the letter, so that the recipient would know that who has written the letter. In case, you are not handling the letter to the person, instead, you are posting then remember to put it in an envelope with proper address and stamp.
Formatting your letter:
- Note down the address and date: Take a clean sheet paper and write the address at the top left corner. Or you can do the same in the new word processor document. Write your latest address by using one or two lines. Right below the address, mention the date of writing. The date should contain the day, month, and year or you should include at least month and year.
- While writing the date, you can either use the full format i.e. ‘Tuesday, April 26th, 2016’ or can use the shortened digit format i.e. ‘26/04/2016’.
- Including such information can help the recipient to understand when and where the letter has been written. It is very helpful if you are residing in distinct parts of the world.
- Put the recipient’s name at the top of the letter: You should start writing the letter by addressing the person to whom you are writing by putting the name at the top.
- It totally depends on the sender to include or exclude the salutation before the name of the recipient. If you wish to include the salutation, you can add the phrases ‘Dear’, ‘Darling’, and ‘Hey’ etc.
- In case, you are writing an open letter and unaware of the name of the recipient, you can give a normal address, such as ‘To whom it may concern’ or ‘To whoever reads the letter’.
- Fill the body of the letter with your message: Just below the name of the recipient, write your message that you want to convey. The body paragraph of an informal letter as long as your requirement. So never hesitate to write if it goes beyond one page. Write every feeling of our heart!
- As your first page is finished with your thoughts, you can use another one and continue with your writing process.
- To write neat and organized with good handwriting, it is beneficial to use the lined kind of paper such as notebook, journal, etc.
- Write a brief closing to wrap up the letter: Once you have finished writing your body paragraph, leave a little room below the last sentence to put a short sign-off. The closing line of an informal letter should have phrases such as “Sincerely,” “Yours truly,” or “With love.”
- The closing line acts as the signal for the recipient that this is the end of the letter.
- As this is an informal letter, so if you don’t want to include the closing, there is not any necessity to include. You can always just sign off with your name.
- Sign your name at the bottom of the letter: The name should be signed just following the closing line. The name can be signed either in cursive or as a formal script that depends on your wish. If you wish, you can also simply type of print the name.
While signing the name, you can use either full name, first name or nickname on the basis of your relationship with the person to whom you are writing or according to your wish.
Adding Some Style While Writing Formally:
- Keep your language conversational for a more personal feel: The informal letters should be written in a relaxed and casual manner, so that the reader feels comfortable to read it. Freely use the inside jokes, hypothetical questions, contractions and other figures of speech. It can depict your natural voice to the reader.
- If you are feeling confused about what to write or whatnot, imagine that you are having a face to face conversation with the person and write in a similar manner in the letter.
- Use colored ink or fonts to liven up your correspondence: People use black inks for newspapers and tedious, stiff formal letters. To write the informal letter, you can use any ink of your own choice or if you are typing the letter in a word processor, you can change the default text color. Blue, green, red, and other funky shades can all be fun attention grabbers, especially if you’re writing to a close friend.
- Using different colors for different keywords or phrases can make the letter more interesting for the reader.
- Remember to select the color that contrasts with the paper to make it clearly able to be seen.
- Draw in the margins of handwritten letters to lend a little visual flair. Take advantage of the extra space on either side of the page by filling it with doodles, symbols, or quirky notes. Such features can help to articulate your feelings artistically and make your reader feel fascinating to read.
Mailing Your Letter:
- Fold your letter twice vertically so it will fit in an envelope: Fold the letter up 1/3 of the paper, by taking the bottom two corners of the letter. Again fold the doubled section to generate a tidy wrap that can fit in any business envelope. This approach is best if you use standard 8.5 inches (22 cm) x 11 inches (28 cm) printed paper. But it can be used for other papers too.
- Place your letter in an envelope and seal it up: Slide the letter breadthwise into the envelope until it fits the envelope. To seal the envelope, lick the glue strip lining the inner edge of the flap to moisten it. After that, lower the flap and put little pressure for a few seconds until the adhesive sticks. Remember that there are varieties of envelopes available in the market with different shapes and sizes. If the envelope is not the best fit for your letter, then look for another and a better one.
- Print your recipient’s mailing information on the face of the envelope: At the middle portion of the envelope, but certain facts about the recipient such as:
- Name of the recipient
- Complete address
- City, state or province
- Postal code of their place
If your recipient does not stay in a house, remember to mention the apartment number just following the street address. In case you want the person gets aware who has sent them the letter before they open it, then include your address at the top left corner of the envelope.
- Stick a stamp in the upper right-hand corner of the envelope: Put the stamp directly across from the recipient’s address, in the position where mail handler can easily grab it. After applying appropriate postage to the letter, now you can drop it to the mailbox to continue with the sending process.
Tips To Write An Informal Letter:
- Always remember to check the letter, again and again, to make it free from grammatical errors and other forms of errors.
- Leave proper lines between the paragraphs of informal letter to make it look clean and tidy.
- It is beneficial to underline the main points. Underline by using pencil and scale.
- It is very important to present the letter more effectively.
- Go through more and more letters to gain more idea.
Example of the informal letter:
April 26, 2016
It’s been a long time since I wrote to you. You are also quite busy, it seems. Hope you are doing well and having better health. A few days back I came to know that you have got a new job. I am really very happy to know. Congratulations!
I can understand it is very hard to get a preferred job in this competitive job market. It becomes more difficult if you are fresher and don’t hold any work experience. I really appreciate the ingenuity you showed to find a job. I am still struggling to find a better job. Now I am feeling really inspired by your success.
I am very sure that your interest and creativity in writing and your writing skills will lead you to a better position. With the expectation of hearing more blissful news from your side in the upcoming years, I am closing the letter.
Best wishes for success,
Hope! Now You Understood Informal Letter Very Well:
Here we have discussed everything related to informal letters. There are very few people wish to write an informal letter in this world of mobile technologies. Mobile messages take the place of informal letters. But instead, it holds its own significance. There is not any proper format to write an informal letter but still, there are certain facts that need to be understood by the sender. Hope this article helps you to clear all your confusion related to writing an informal letter.
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