Formal Letter Format | How to Write a Formal Letter, Types, Topics and Formal Letter Examples


Formal Letter writing Format

What is a Formal Letter? How to Write a Formal Letter| Formal Letter Format and Examples



What is a Formal Letter?

Formal letters are official letters written to people in their official capacity or written to a firm. They are formal in nature. Nothing in such letters should be personal or intimate. with subjects such as inquiry, orders, transfer of money, reference, request, booking complaints, loss, and apology. What matters is setting out your letter correctly, keeping to the point, and maintaining the formal tone. These are letters that are written in a strict and specific format.



See Video Explanation of Formal Letter


Difference between Formal Letter and Informal Letter

Formal letters are usually written for official reasons. A formal letter, also known as an official letter, and it is written in a formal language with a specific structure and layout.

An informal letter is a personal letter, you may want to ask for something, or communicate with a friend far away.

Language and tone
Formal and polite
Colloquial, friendly
Addressed to
Business, officials, school / college authority, editor
Friend, cousin, siblings, parents, relatives
To be followed strictly
Not so strict, can vary
Word limit
To be followed as given in question
To be followed as given in question


Types of Formal Letters

There are different types of formal letters, as discussed, and they can generally be labelled under the following terms:

  1. Business Letters
  • Enquiry letter
  • Complaint Letter
  • Order placing letter
  1. Official Letters
  • Resignation letter
  • Complaint letter
  • Letter to Principal
  • Maternity leave Application
  • Job application / cover letter
  • Letter to bank manager
  • Letter to police
  • Letter to government
  1. Letters to Newspapers
  • Letter to the Editor

Let us see a brief description of each type of letter-

An enquiry letter or a letter of inquiry is written to inquire about any product or service. It can also be written to get information about a course of study. The writer asks for details like price, availability, course duration, facilities provided, etc.

A Complaint letter can be written to complain against any defective product or defective machinery, asking for service or replacement. It can also be written to highlight a deficiency in service. A citizen can also lodge a complaint or grievance via a complaint letter written to the civic authorities.

Order letter can be written by an individual or an organization to place an order of goods. It must contain necessary details like the description of goods required, quality, mode of payment and expected date of delivery.

Resignation letter is written by an employee to request termination of services. In case the organization has a notice period, it has to be complied at both ends.

Letter to the principal can be written by various people for various purposes. A student can write a leave application to the principal. The parents can also write a leave application for their ward. Parents can write an application to the principal to get information regarding the course of study. Also, any teacher can write a letter to the principal, seeking leave.

Maternity leave application can be written by parents – to – be or new parents who have to take care of the new born child.

Cover letters accompany your application when applying for a new position. The cover letter is a tool to help introduce yourself in a memorable, personal way during a job application. A well-crafted cover letter goes over information on your resume and expands this information for the reader, taking them on a guided journey of some of your greatest career and life achievements.

Letter to bank manager can be written to request for the issue of passbook, issue of new ATM Card, changes in address, transfer of bank account, renewal of Fixed Deposit, and so on.

Letter to police can be written to raise any matter of concern. It can also be written to report any theft or loss of valuable possession like passport, driving licence, etc.

Letter to the government authorities like MLA, Governor, Municipal Commissioner, etc. can be written to raise any complaint or any matter of social concern.

Letter to the editor can also be written to seek help from the publication in highlighting matters of social concern like traffic jams, lack of amenities, water logging, stray dog menace, plastic use, etc.


Format of a Formal Letter

  1. Sender’s address:  Write the sender’s address on the top left side of the page.
  2. Date:  Leave some space after writing the sender’s address, write the date..
  3. Receiver’s address:  Then, write the address of the recipient (the Officer / Principal / Editor) 
  4. Subject of the letter: Mention precisely the main purpose of the letter. 
  5. Salutation: Write Respected Sir / Madam 
  6. Body: 

Leaving another line, start the body of the letter. The body of any formal letter must be divided into 3 parts: 

First Paragraph: Introduce who you are and the purpose of writing the letter in brief.
Second Paragraph: Explain what the issue is and how it impacts you or matters to you and/ or the society.
Third Paragraph: Conclude your letter by mentioning the conclusion or request or solution.

  1. Closing:  End your letter with complimentary regards and gratitude Use “Thanking you/ 

Yours faithfully/ Yours sincerely”.

  1. Sender’s name/signature and designation (if applicable)
Sender’s Address


Receiver’s Address


Salutation  (Respected Sir/Ma’am)


— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Complimentary Closing (Yours faithfully, Yours sincerely)

Sender’s Name

Designation (if applicable)


Candidates writing formal letters in the exam must remember the following tips-

  1. Use of colloquial words, short forms, slang language and abbreviations are restricted.
  2. The letter must be to the point, precise and clearly indicating the message.
  3. The subject line is very important in Formal Letters, even when you reply to a letter.
  4. Follow the word limit strictly in order to avoid deduction of marks.
  5. Prevent grammatical errors and spelling mistakes to score full marks.
  6. Format is of utmost importance.
  7. All necessary information must be included in the body of the formal letter.

The CBSE has laid great emphasis on the topic of formal letter writing. It has been included in the syllabi of various classes. Let us check out the details provided in the syllabi regarding the type of formal letter that will be asked , the allocation of marks and the break up of marks for formal letter writing-


CBSE Class 10 (English Language and Literature) Formal Letter Writing details

Students shall be expected to attempt any one out of the given two options of formal letter. The types of letters that can be asked are :


Also check out – 

The letter has to be written within 100 – 120 words and it has been allotted 5 marks. The break-up of marks is as follows-

Organization of ideas


CBSE Class 10 (Communicative English) Formal Letter Writing details-

Students shall be expected to attempt any one out of the given two options of formal letter. The types of letters will be based on the themes from Main coursebook.  They can be – 

Also check out-

The letter has to be written within 120 words and it has been allotted 7 marks. The break-up of marks is as follows-

Organization of ideas


CBSE Class 12 (English Core) Formal Letter Writing details-

Students shall be expected to attempt any one out of the given two options of formal letter. The types of letters that will be asked are – 

Also check out-

The letter has to be written in 120 – 150 words and it has been allotted 5 marks. The break-up of marks is as follows-

Organization of ideas
Accuracy of spelling and grammar



Solved Examples of formal letter-

  1. India is a highly populated country. People lack in maintaining proper sanitation and hygiene as a result of which, they suffer from various diseases. India has a serious sanitation challenge; around 60 percent of the world‟s open defecation takes place in India. Poor sanitation causes health hazards including diarrhoea, particularly in children under 5 years of age, malnutrition and deficiencies in physical development and cognitive ability. You are Nitish /Nikita, head boy/girl of Anand Public School, Jaipur. Write a letter to the editor of a national daily, highlighting the problem and suggesting practical ways to ensure public sanitation and the right to dignity and privacy.

Anand Public School


The Editor
National Daily

Subject: Ensuring public sanitation and the right to dignity and privacy

Respected Sir/Ma’am

Through the columns of your esteemed daily I would like to grab the reader’s attention towards the sanitation and hygiene conditions in our locality. I am Nikita, Head Girl of Anand Public School, Jaipur. There are many students in our school suffering from diseases like diarrhoea, infections etc. because of lack of proper sanitation. 

India is a highly populated country. People lack in maintaining proper sanitation and hygiene as a result of which, they suffer from various diseases. Poor sanitation causes health hazards including diarrhoea, particularly in children under 5 years of age, malnutrition and deficiencies in physical development and cognitive ability

People should dispose off garbage in public dustbins and those who litter must be heavily penalised by the Government. The toilet facilities should be arranged in separate blocks for men and women so that open defecation is minimised.

Every individual has the right to live and the right to avail the basic facilities of life. So, it is my earnest request to look into the matter seriously and ensure each individual proper sanitation facilities and thus reducing health hazards.

I would be grateful if you highlight this matter in your newspaper. Thanking you in advance


Yours truly,
Head Girl
Anand Public School

  1. As Vaishali Nathani of 214, Indrayani Apartments, Vaishali Street, Daipur, you believe that forming Ecology clubs and appointing Eco-minders in your city can aid in the preservation and conservation of nature. Write a letter to the MLA of your city area, in about 120 words, suggesting the need to form such clubs. Share their importance and implications. Recommend the involvement of resident volunteers for implementation of eco-club activities that nurture and protect the local ecosystem.


124, Indrayani Apartments
Vaishali Street, Daipur

21 June 2023

Janta House
Rajajipura, Daipur

Subject: Suggestion Regarding the Need to Form Ecology Clubs

Respected Madam

I’m writing to you to express my concern about the state of the environment in our city and to provide a solution that, in my opinion, might assist in preserving and conserving nature. I think that establishing Ecology groups and employing Eco-minders in our community can help with this goal.

Ecology clubs can be run by resident volunteers who may undertake activities such as making bird-houses, planting native trees, water harvesting and creating compost piles to nurture and protect the local ecosystem. We may increase citizens’ understanding of the value of protecting the environment and foster a sense of responsibility towards nature by including them in these activities.

The establishment of ecology clubs may have several effects, including a decrease in pollution levels, an increase in biodiversity, and the promotion of sustainable practices. This initiative will enhance the quality of life of the residents by providing them with a green and healthy environment. 

Madam, you are requested to kindly consider this suggestion to ensure better preservation and conservation of nature.

Yours sincerely,
Vaishali Nathani

(A concerned resident)

  1. As Armaan Khan, the School Literary Captain of Ujjwal Academy, Old City, Kiladerabad, you believe that languages can help bridge regional divides and promote unity. Write a letter to the Editor of a national daily, in about 120 words, suggesting the introduction of an online regional language learning programme managed and run by student councils and language clubs in the city. The programme aims to help residents who have recently relocated to a new region in picking up the local language organically. Share the importance and credibility of such a programme and suggest a feasible way to execute it along with possible activities.


Ujjwal Academy
Old City, Kilandarabad

30 June 2023

The Editor
India Samachar
Jamnagar, Kilandarabad

Subject: Introduction of Online Regional Language Learning Programmes

Respected Sir

As someone who believes that languages can help to bridge regional divides and promote unity, I’m writing to suggest the establishment of an online regional language learning programme in our city to aid the recently relocated residents (of all ages) in establishing a positive connection with the local residents and fostering mutual understanding. 

The residents may learn the local language naturally with the aid of this online service, which is planned and operated by student councils and language clubs. This programme may only be held on weekends for three months, allowing participants to attend without interfering with their employment or academic obligations. To make this curriculum more interesting, initiatives such as language exchange programmes, cultural gatherings, and online group discussions might be undertaken.

I hope that publishing this letter in the columns of your Daily shall urge the community to support this project for its potential to unite people, promote language learning, and build a sense of brotherhood.

Yours truly
Armaan Khan
(Captain, Literary Club)


  1. You are Neha/Nihal Singh, Computer In-charge of Army Public School. Your school wishes to buy 20 computers and computer accessories from Apple Inc., Nehru Place, New Delhi. Draft a letter placing an order for the same.


Army Public School



27 February 2023


The Sales In Charge

Apple Inc.,Nehru Place

New Delhi


Subject: To place an order for computers and its accessories.


Respected Sir/madam


Our school needs computers and its accessories. We have selected your company for the order of 20 computers and its accessories. Terms and conditions regarding the order are enclosed with this letter.


Items required are as follows-


20 Computers with 1 GB RAM, High resolution, fast speed processor, 20 Mouse pads of high quality rubber, 6 Printers (colour) of HP, latest model, 1 Projector with LED screen measuring 50 inches.                      


Following the delivery of the products, the money due for the purchases will be paid via cheque. Please provide discount as per the terms agreed upon earlier. Please ensure the delivery by 10 March at the following address – 

School office, Army Public School, Daryaganj, New Delhi,

Between 10 AM to 2 PM.


Thanking you in advance. Looking forward to keeping up our commercial ties with your company in the future.


Yours sincerely,

Neha Singh

Army Public School


  1. You are Sujal /Sujata of Pragya Public School, Nangal, Punjab who had arranged a trip for fifty students to Nanital in summer vacations for ten days with ‘Mount Travels and Tourism’. The arrangements done by the travel agency were far below the standard .The accommodation and food facilities were inferior in quality. Write a letter of complaint to the director of the agency to stop duping tourists with false promises as it tarnishes the image of locals .


Pragyan Public School

Nagal, Punjab


The Director

Mount Travels and Tourism



Subject: Substandard services provided to Pragyan Public School.


Respected Sir


I, the programme coordinator of Pragyan Public School write to you to throw some light on the substandard services provided during our recent trip to Nainital

Since the team arrived in Nainital, it has been really difficult for us to deal with your subpar services. Nobody came to receive the students at the station on time. After calling your guide for half an hour, he turned up with a bunch of excuses. Second, I should point out that the lodgings you provided were quite shabby. The food provided by you made many students sick.


We had a terrible experience with you, and I can guarantee that I won’t ever suggest your tours and travels to anybody again, least of all avail it in future. Stop misleading customers in this manner so that the honesty of service providers is not called into doubt.


With deep regret


Programme Coordinator

Pragyan Public School, Punjab


  1. You are Sonal/ Samkit of Vidyanjali Public School, Lucknow . You have seen an

advertisement in ‘The Times of India’ related to new batches of ‘Astronomy Club’ initiated by National Science Centre, Lucknow starting from the coming fortnight. You wish to join the Club. Write a letter to the Director, enquiring about the venue, duration, fee- structure, activities, transportation etc. Invent other necessary details.


155 – A Green Enclave

Model Town, Lucknow


1 July, 2023


The Director

National Science Center



Subject: To enquire the details of Astronomy Club


Respected Sir/Madam


I am Samkit, a 10th-class student at Vidyanjali Public School in Lucknow.I’m interested in joining the astronomy club that the National Science Centre in Lucknow will be launching. I would appreciate it if you could provide me with some details on the Club, specifically:


  1. Venue
  2. Duration
  3. Fee-structure
  4. Activities
  5. Transportation


I shall be grateful if you could provide me with the above mentioned details so that I can do the formalities to join the club. Looking forward to your prompt response.


Thank you.


Yours faithfully



  1. Drinking water is becoming a rare commodity. Industrial development is filling our rivers, seas and oceans with toxic pollutants which are a major threat to human health. You are deeply saddened to see water pollution as an appalling problem, which is powerful enough to lead the world on a path of destruction. Write a letter to the Editor of Express News to make the public aware about the causes of water pollution and also suggest the measures to prevent water pollution.


ABC Colony

New Delhi


20th January 2023


The Editor

Express News

New Delhi


Subject- Public awareness towards water pollution.


Through the columns of your esteemed newspaper, I would like to draw the attention of the public towards the dire situation caused by water pollution. Our natural resource, water, is being neglected as a result of man’s increased focus on creating big structures, big roads, and modern factories. Severe water contamination is a result of the burning of fossil fuels, widespread mining operations, industrial and sewage waste, accidental oil leaks, growing urban expansion etc.

As suggestive measures to curb water pollution, river water must be prevented from getting polluted. Any waste should be treated before being dumped into a river. Routine cleaning of the water systems and treatment of drainage water should be made compulsory.Rain water harvesting and various other techniques must be used to conserve water.


I request you to publish the issue of water pollution in the columns of your newspaper to draw the attention of the public. I hope for a positive response from your end. Let us resolve to make our waters clean and safe.


Yours faithfully



  1. You are Tarun/Taruna studying in Excellence School, Bhopal. Write a letter to the Principal of your school complaining about the quality of food in the school canteen. 


ABC Colony



30 June 2023


The Principal

Excellence School



Subject- Complaint against the poor quality of food in canteen


Respected Ma’am


My name is Taruna. I study in class 10th in your school. This letter is to inform you about the poor quality of food being served in the school canteen for the past three months. I wish to inform you that the chef uses expired food products because of which the food usually smells bad. The quality of food which is being cooked in the school canteen is totally ignored and it is affecting the health of students in the school.


I request you to look into the issue and speak with the canteen staff and urge them to cook nutritious and healthy foods and maintain proper hygiene standards.


Thanking you


Yours faithfully



  1. You are Tanay Jain of B-26 Saket Nagar, New Delhi. Write a letter to the General Manager, Bharat Electric Supply Company, complaining about the frequent break-down in the supply of electricity in your locality.


B-26 Saket Nagar

New Delhi


5th March 2023


The General Manager

Bharat Electric Supply Company

New Delhi


Subject:- Frequent breakdowns in electricity supply in Saket Nagar


Respected Sir


I write to you to bring to your notice that the frequent failures in the electricity supply affects Saket Nagar’s residents. Electricity goes off three to five times during the day and sometimes it is restored only after several hours. High voltage fluctuations are also seen when the supply is being made. This harms the appliances as well.

It has been discovered that a malfunctioning transformer in our region is to blame for the frequent power outages. We have often complained about this irregular electricity supply to the local officials, but to no avail.

I would appreciate it if you could please take the required steps to make sure our region has a reliable electricity supply.


Yours faithfully

Tanay Jain


  1. Write a letter to the Police Commissioner (Traffic) about the inadequate parking facilities in the commercial street area of Bangalore, which is causing a lot of inconvenience to the people. You may also offer your suggestions to solve it. You are Rakesh/Radhika, No. 12, Jayanangar, Bangalore.


12 Jayanangar



12 March, 2023


The Police Commissioner (Traffic)



Subject- Inadequate Parking Facility


Respected Sir


I am writing to draw your attention to an essential civic amenity that is lacking and is troublesome for both the general public and car users. The lack of parking spaces in Bangalore’s commercial street area has resulted in a sea of disorder, confusion, and panic. Through the evening, the issue deteriorates. People are stranded because they are unable to park their automobiles in designated parking areas. They also find it difficult to move out of the parking places and onto the road.

I would like to offer some practical suggestions:


  • Smart Parking Lots with multiple storeys must be set up. 
  • Parking vehicles in No-parking Zone must be heavily penalised. 
  • Odd-Even rule must be implemented to ensure fewer cars on the roads. Even-numbered vehicles should be permitted on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday, whereas odd-numbered vehicles should be permitted on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.


I hope my suggestions will be implemented for public benefit.


Thanking you


Yours faithfully




Practice Questions on Formal Letter Writing

  1. You are the In-charge of the Medical Section of Gyanodaya Public School, Nehru Vihar, Alwar. Your stock of medicines is about to finish.nWrite a letter to the Director of Jambo Medicare, Delhi, ordering medical items like glucose, crocin, bandages, tincture, pain-healers, ointments etc. Ask for a discount on bulk order. Invent other necessary details. 
  2. You are Ajeet / Anika, a student of S.M. Public School, Delhi. You are concerned about the water crisis which has become very dangerous. Write a letter to the editor of a newspaper highlighting the need to provide water in drought hit areas and the dire need of creating awareness about the conservation of water.
  3. You are Neetu / Neelansh of Angel Public school, Delhi. You are concerned about the cleanliness in your school, as the students waste a lot of paper and do not use dust-bins properly. Write a letter to the Principal of your school, highlighting the possibility of diseases and the dire need for creating awareness about the prevention of such diseases through informative posters in the morning assembly and giving suggestions to maintain cleanliness in the school.
  4. Tourism being one of the biggest and fastest growing industries globally, affects the economic, socio-cultural, environmental and educational resources of nations. Improving tourism industry in India would thus lead to national development in many spheres. As Ankit/ Ankita, write a letter to the Editor of The Times of India expressing your views on the same. You may like to take ideas from the unit- Travel and Tourism besides your own ideas.
  5. You are Mr. Rajneesh Mishra, Senior Department Head of Blooms Public School, Jaipur. The water coolers of your school are now very old and exhausted. There is an urgent need for replacement. You have finalized on the quotations sent by M.G. Coolers Pvt. Ltd., Jawahar Industrial Area, Jaipur. Draft a letter placing an order for five water coolers of five hundred liters capacity each. Invent all other details like reference no., quotation, detail of order, date of delivery, mode of payment etc.
  6. Your school has decided to add a few books to the library. The school wants to encourage reading habits amongst students. As the Librarian of the Venkateshwar International School, write a letter to Pearl Publishers to place an order for books for all age groups. Give all necessary details. 
  7. You are Shyam Murari, President Welfare Association, Mayur Vihar. Write a letter to the Health Secretary, NCR Government, Delhi complaining against the menace caused by monkeys and stray dogs in your colony.
  8. You are Sachin /Sakshi, the President of the students’ council of your school. Write a letter to the S.H.O., Police Station Daryaganj, Delhi, drawing his attention towards the increasing incidents of eve-teasing and crimes against women and young girls in your area.
  9. Your sister has just passed the All India Secondary School Examination of CBSE. She is keen on joining some institute which may help her in her personality development. She consults her language teacher on the subject who advises her to join the Centre for Creativity and Development for this purpose. Now write a letter to the Director of the Centre, seeking necessary information about her admission to their 8-week summer course in leadership.
  10. The Pre-board. The English exam of Happy Valley School, Secunderabad is on the same day as the All India Entrance Exam, for the Indian School of Languages. As Kiran Seth, the Prefect of Class XII-A, write a letter to the Principal of her school requesting him/her to change the date of the school English exam.


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