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Postal Address Example

By 29 April 2024May 2nd, 2024No Comments
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Postal Address Example

If you send and receive mail regularly, you are likely aware of how to write a postal address correctly. Although it seems like something anybody can do, it is not that simple. Even a few minor mistakes can lead to lost mail and delays, hence costing you a lot. The easiest way to avoid this scenario is to look up postal address examples and follow them correctly.

How do you write an address? Before getting to this question, let us understand the two broad categories of addresses used for mailing.

  • The first category consists of the recipient’s address. It is further divided into many types
  • The second category is the sender’s address which is much simpler to understand and write

What Is an Address?

Addresses provide the necessary information for someone to locate a street, plot of land, building, structure, room, etc. It comprises political boundaries, organization names, streets, building numbers, ZIP codes, etc., in a specific format. Though you may use addresses for many reasons, you primarily need them for receiving mail. USPS leverages address databases to route mailers to their correct destinations.

Domestic Address

Domestic addresses are used when mailing to recipients in the US itself. You can use an address verification API like PostGrid to verify your mailing lists. PostGrid is CASS-certified and hence allows you to access fully verified addresses.

While using envelopes, place the recipient’s address right in the center. In case you are sending postcards, the mailing address is supposed to be written on the backside towards the right.

Here’s how to write a mailing address:
  • The first line should have the recipient’s full name
  • Write the delivery address on the second line, including the building/apartment/suite number and the street name
  • On the third line, write the city name, state abbreviation, and ZIP code

Find the mailing address example below to understand the format better:

Cecelia Havens
456 White Finch St.
North Augusta, SC 29860

The USPS automated mail sorting and processing machines read all addresses starting from the bottom and moving upwards. Hence, they first look for the city, state, and ZIP code, and then the street address. If you mention the last line wrong, the USPS might not be able to deliver your mail to the right address, leading to unnecessary delays and misplacements.

Apartment Address

Writing a domestic address is simple until you add an apartment, suite, or floor number to the mix. Though the complete address remains the same, you might require some adjustments. Add the number on the street line—before the street name.

For example, if you live in the 5th apartment on 1st Avenue Street, your street line would look like this:

5 1st Avenue ST

The address format would be:

Recipient’s Name
Apartment Number | Street Number and Name
City Name, State Abbreviation | ZIP Code

You must also follow this format for floors, suites, buildings, and room numbers. Imagine a postman entering a building with ten floors and 50 apartments. How would they know where to deliver the item? Adding all the details down to these numbers would save everyone time, money, and effort.

Business Address

Business addresses are mainly used by B2B companies. Such addresses cannot be written and formatted in the same way as a regular residential address. Geographically, they can be considered to be the same, but there are some obvious differences.

How do you write an address on business mail?

  • The first line should again include the recipient’s full name. Since there are many people working at an organization, make sure you mention the name of the concerned person only. You can write “ATTN:” or “Attention:” before the person’s name. It is not necessary to do so, but it is a popular practice. Moreover, some people also put a title (CEO, VP, and so on) in front of their names. Hence, you can do the same.
  • Mention the organization’s name on the second line. The USPS workers can easily get your mail delivered if you use the same business name as mentioned outside their office.
  • The next line should have the building/apartment/suite number and the street address, similar to a regular address.
  • The last line should have the city, state, and ZIP code.

Find below a business letter address example:

ATTN: CEO David Kenner
Kenner Group Inc.
85 Bradford Lane
Vincentown, NJ 08120

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Military Address

Military addresses are always affiliated with either an APO (Air/Army Post Office), FPO (Fleet Post Office), or DPO (Diplomatic Post Office).

  • Every mail going to an APO/FPO/DPO should have the recipient’s full name, rank, and unit. You cannot replace the recipient’s name with the words “Any Service Member” because it is not permitted anymore.
  • Military mail is handled separately by a dedicated postal channel. Hence, never mention the city and state names in military addresses. It is done to prevent military mail from entering domestic and foreign mail networks.
  • Instead of the city name, mention either of these abbreviations—APO, FPO, or DPO. Similarly, replace the state name with the acronym that indicates the recipient’s duty station. The acronym could be:

AA = Armed Forces of America
AP = Armed Forces of the Pacific
AE = Armed Forces of Europe

  • Always use 9-digit ZIP codes while writing military addresses.

The military postal address example is simple. Mention the service member’s name and title, accompanied by the unit and APO/DPO/FPO number.

PFC Isobel Jones
PSC 5 BOX 7260
APO AE 15069-8873

International Address

Writing international addresses can be tricky. The format depends on the guidelines laid down by the destination country’s post office. You need to take care of these things before sending out international mail. For many countries, you also have to transliterate addresses into their national language. PostGrid’s address verification API can help you do all of it easily.

What is a postal address example for international destinations?

Find below the steps to write an international address. We are using the general format of postal addresses, typically used around the world.

  • The recipient’s full name is supposed to be mentioned in the first line.
  • The second line should have the house number and street address. This line can differ widely from country to country.
  • The next line should mention the name of the city or town.
  • Write the state or province name on the following line.
  • Mention the correct postal code format on the next line.
  • The last line should always have the country’s name. Some countries require you to write their full names, while some of them prefer abbreviations.

Find below two international address examples:


Jacob Tomlinson
75N Southern Street
London NW5 9XE


Noah Tonkin
86 Baker St.
North Sydney NSW 2156

Also Read: ZIP Code Lookup

Return Address

It is not mandatory to mention a return address, but it is always advisable to mention it. If your mail is not delivered due to some reason, the USPS will be able to return it to you only when a return address has been mentioned. In fact, the USPS has made it essential to mention return addresses on all international mail. Therefore, both individuals and companies should normalize writing return addresses on every outgoing mail piece.

Related Article: Where to Write Return Address on Letter

While writing postal addresses on envelopes and postcards, take care to differentiate between the mailing address and return address. You need to mention the sender’s address in the top-left corner of the envelope. The address format for return addresses is the same as the format used for regular mailing addresses.

  • Mention your full name on the first line (this is optional; you can rather mention your department name)
  • Write your company’s name
  • Mention your building number and street address
  • Name your city and state along with your ZIP code

Return address example:

Jamie Bower
157 Windfall Rd.
Tampa, FL 32506

If you wish, you can include your phone number below the address. It is a smart option when you want the recipient to contact you.

Also Read: Bulk Batch Address Verification Services

How to Write a PO Box Address?

What is a postal address for example? Sometimes, you need to mail to a PO box and not an individual mailing address. Here, you can omit the building or apartment number and the street address altogether. Find below how to write a PO box address:

  • As usual, write the recipient’s full name on the first line.
  • On the second line, you need to mention the prefix “PO Box.” Add a space and continue writing the box number.
  • You can write your city name, state abbreviation, and ZIP code in the same way as you write for regular addresses.

PO box address example:

Georgia Labonair
PO BOX 523029
West Chester, PA 18630

Never mention the apartment number and street address if you are mentioning the PO box number. Elsewise, you can mention both, but on two different lines.

Also Read: How to Write Invoice and Payment Letters: Templates, Requirements, and Delivery

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Without stamps, your mail will be declared useless. Even though you would have mentioned the mailing and return address correctly, USPS cannot deliver your mail without the right stamps.

You can stick your stamps on the top-right corner of your postcards and envelopes. Affixing stamps is easy, but it is difficult to ascertain the right amount of postage and the number of stamps to be used.

For standard one-ounce envelopes to be sent locally or nationally, it is recommended to use Forever stamps as you can always use them despite any future price changes.

Every ounce after one will cost you 15 cents. Hence, you will need to use the additional ounce stamps for every ounce over one. Otherwise, you can use two-ounce stamps.

Also Read: Direct Mail Examples

USPS Address Guidelines

After understanding so many postal address examples, it is better to have a look at some of the USPS address guidelines that you need to keep in mind:

  • Your mailing address and stamps should be on the same side
  • Never use any punctuation marks
  • Write in capital letters
  • Using black ink on light or white paper is recommended
  • Leave one space between the city name and state abbreviation
  • Leave two spaces between the state abbreviation and ZIP code

Some other things to follow are:

  • Use the right street suffix abbreviations. Some of the popular ones are ST (street), CT (court), AVE (avenue), and BLVD (boulevard).
  • Mention the right street directionals: N, S, E, W, NE, NW, SE, SW.
  • Don’t use the # sign for writing apartment or suite numbers. Use abbreviations like APT (apartment), STE (suite), FL (floor). Hence, a proper street address example would be—STE 10, NW Main St.
  • Use at least a 10-point font.

Address Normalization: Why Should You Pay Attention

The US address format shows you that you must follow USPS-prescribed guidelines to write your address on letters, cards, or packages. Similarly, all countries have specific rules around mentioning delivery addresses. You must reformat all addresses to ensure you follow them.

We call it address standardization. However, you must also look into address normalization. It helps you consider the qualitative aspect of addresses.

Normalization lets you consider missing data, typos, misspellings, obsolete elements, etc. Sending mailers with addresses having such errors can result in delays, misplacements, reshipping, etc. Thus, investing in it is crucial.

Address normalization ensures you translate or transliterate delivery addresses without mistakes so the postal carrier in foreign countries can deliver your items hassle-free. Luckily, PostGrid helps you with it with its verification solutions. You can check and update your databases within minutes.

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Learning how to write an address and manually doing the task for a few mail items makes sense. But what if you need to mail in large volumes? It can get extremely boring and tedious. Plus, you are likely to make mistakes while doing something manually. Therefore, businesses can rather use PostGrid’s address verification API to autocomplete, parse, standardize, validate, and verify addresses at lightning speeds.

:bulb: Also Read: Zip Code Validation

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