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How to Make Addresses

Each mail piece must have a clear space for the address, postage, postmarks and postal endorsements. Put the address on one side of the mail piece only.

The address must include: the name or identification of the recipient, followed by the delivery address (including number, street, directional and if any, apartment or suite number; or P.O. Box number; or route and box number), and on the last line, the city, state, and ZIP Code or ZIP+4 code. The attention line is the line above the recipient/firm name.

Line 1: Information / Attention John Doe
Line 2: Recipient / Firm Name ABC Company
Line 3: Complete Street, P.O. or Route Address 123 Ace ST. NE APT 4
Line 4: City, State & ZIP Code Ames, NY 10802-1551


Print the delivery address in the middle of the envelope, with line 4 at least 3/4 from the bottom. Place the return address in the upper left corner. Postage will be placed in the upper right corner.

Return Address

You should put a return address on all mail pieces; you must put your return address on:

  • Mail of any class requiring return or address correction
  • Priority Mail
  • Mail with Permit Imprints
  • All Standard Mail
  • Registered, Insured and C.O.D. mail
  • Certified mail or Express Mail if a return receipt is requested
  • Periodicals in envelopes or wrappers
  • Official mail

The return address should not extend more than half the length of the mail pieces to the right and no lower than one-third of the height of the mail piece from the top.

Print forwarding, return, and address correction endorsements directly below the return address.