Formal vs Informal letters
NOTE: This topic is for IELTS General Training test ONLY. If you are taking the IELTS Academic Training test then skip this post.
Use the following in INFORMAL letters
- Beginning: Dear + first name
- Friendly greeting: I hope you are in the pink of health
- Contractions: I'm, didn't, couldn't, don't, you've etc.
- Questions: Do you remember ...? Why don't you ...?
- Exclamation: I can't wait to see you!
- Connectors: Well, anyway, so, and
- Phrases: had a great time, couldn't have asked for more, working flat out, back to normal
- Ending: hope to see you soon + first name
Use the following in FORMAL letters
- Beginning: Dear Sir or Madam
- No greeting necessary
- Do not use contractions: I am instead of I'm, could not instead of couldn't
- Avoid direct questions: "I would like ..." instead of "Can I have ...?"
- No exclamation marks (!)
- Connectors: Consequently, However, although, also, and
- Phrases and vocabulary: with regard to, failed to, he assured me, I reported the issue, contacted, under warranty
- Ending: I await your prompt response, Yours faithfully + full name
In today's IELTS playlist, you will learn how to recognise the type of letter and write in a consistent tone.
Click on the playlist below to start learning NOW!
General Writing Task 1
As always, if you have any questions about this topic, ask them in the comments below or contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org.
For unlimited feedback with speaking and writing tasks sign up for IELTS Twenty20 Correction Pack today!
Best of luck.