How to address mail

Make sure your post gets exactly where it needs to go

When posting something to someone in the UK, write the address like this:

Addressees' name
House number and street name
Locality name (if needed)
Town (please print in capitals)
Full postcode (please print in capitals)

Handy tips

  • Don’t use full stops or commas
  • Start each line on the left (don’t centre the lines)
  • You don’t need to write the name of the county if you’ve included the town and postcode


Return address

If you want to make sure your post can get back to you, don’t forget to include your UK return address on each item. Items that cannot be delivered will be returned to you.

How to address an international item

The way you write international postal addresses may vary between countries, but here's a good guideline:

Addressee's name
House number and street name
City or town
Province, state or department and postal code

COUNTRY (please print in capitals & use English name)

Handy tips for international post

  • Include the right international postcode
  • If your item is going to Europe, put the postcode to the left of the town – eg 11780 ATHENS
  • Always write the town and country in capital letters, with the full country name appearing last in the address (no abbreviations)
  • Don’t forget the Air Mail sticker – unless you’re using International Economy
  • Remember to include your return address


Return address

If you want to make sure your post can get back to you if undelivered, don't forget to include your UK return address on each item.

Just remember that your return address needs to be in the UK. If you include a return address that’s in the destination country, it won’t be accepted.


If you’re sending a package outside the European Union, you’ll need a customs label. You can get all the customs forms you need at the Post Office.

  • Is your package worth up to £270? Make sure you attach a completed and signed CN22 label. Put it on the front of the item, as near as possible to the top left hand corner - just don't cover up the address.
  • Is your package worth more than £270? Remember to attach the top part of the CN22 and a CN23 form in a plastic wallet (SP126).
  • As well as your customs label, you'll need to sign to confirm that the item doesn't contain anything restricted by postal regulations.  For more info on international post restrictions, click here.
  • Make sure that you've written the name and address of the person who signed the CN22 on the front of the package once it's attached.
  • If you have any questions please ask in your Post Office branch - our staff will be happy to help.CN22 and CN23 customs labels are available from your local Post Office® branch.
  • Under customs law, the sender is legally responsible for the information on the declaration; therefore it is in your own interest to ensure that the declaration is completed accurately and in full.

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