IELTS Letter Writing Vocabulary: Best Tips & Phrases

Salutation (Informal Letters):

Personal Letter: Dear Rohan, My dear Rex.
Do not write: Rohan, Hi Rex, Hello Nicole, Rini, is everything fine? 

N.B. Personal letters are also called informal letters where you address a friend or relative. You might have built a habit of writing a short email or a message using styles like “Hi Elizabeth, Rohan, Hi Rex, Hello Nicole, Rini, is everything fine?, You would not believe what happened today”, but these are not recommended styles while writing a letter (even not in a personal or informal letter). 

Salutation (Formal Letters):

Official Letter: Dear Sir or Madam, Sir or Madam (If you don’t know who are you writing to; use only sir or madam)
Do not write – My Dear Sir, My Dear Madam, Dear Mr Alex, Mrs Cathy, Sir Rex.

Business Letter: Dear Sir or Madam, Sir or Madam. (If you don’t know who are you writing to; use only sir or madam)
Do not write – My Dear Sir, My Dear Madam, Dear Mr Alex, Mrs Cathy.

Beginnings (Personal/Informal letters)

Thank you for your (recent/last) letter.
Many thanks for your (recent/last) letter
It was nice to hear from you recently/lately.
I’m sorry I haven’t been in touch for such a long time.
I’m sorry I haven’t written you for such a long time.
It’s ages since I’ve heard from you. I hope you’re/you and your family are well.

Beginnings (Formal letters- Describing the Purpose):

Proposed Starting:
I am writing this letter to you … 
I am writing to you …
I am David Moore and writing you to …
I am writing to…
I am writing with regard to…
I am writing on behalf of…

Example: 
1) I am writing you to inform the problem with the library of our University…  
2) I am writing to you for informing you about the problem with our new debate team…
3) I am David Moore, a local resident at the Canterberry area, and writing you to explain the reason I’m against the decision to establish a new supermall in our locality.

Describing the Purpose with Reference:

Proposed Starting: (formal and semi-formal letters)
In response to your letter/ invitation/proposal/ complaint/ advertisement/ written claim ……  
In reply to your letter /invitation/ proposal/ complaint/ advertisement/ written claim ……   
With the reference of your letter/invitation/proposal/ complaint/ advertisement/written claim ……   

Example: 
1) I am writing you in response to your invitation………. 
2) With the reference to your proposal……….

Situation:

Apology: 
• I am very sorry but……….
• I am terribly sorry, but……….
• I must apologise about……….
• Please accept my apologies……….
• I’d like to apologize for……….
• Please accept my sincere apologies………. (very formal)

Request:  
• Could you please……….
• Could you possibly……….
• I would be grateful if you……….
• I would highly glad if you……….
• Would it be possible to……….
• I wonder if you could……….
• Would you be kind enough to……….
• would you mind doing……….

Seeking Help: 
• I would appreciate it if you could……….
• I would be grateful if you could……….
• Could you please……….
• I was wondering if you could help me………. (informal)
• I would like you to……….

Complaint:  
• I feel something should be done about……….
• I must complain about……….
• I can not resist myself to inform you that……….
• I am very much unhappy with……….
• I want you to know that……….
• I’m writing to express my dissatisfaction about/with……….
• I’m writing to express my annoyance with……….
• I am not happy about/because……….
•  ……….was very disappointing.
• ………. was utterly disappointing.

Satisfaction:  
• I was very happy to learn that……….
• I was very happy to hear that……….
• I was delighted to hear that……….
• I was thrilled to find out that……….
• I was glad to hear that……….

Suggestion: 
• Perhaps we could………..  
• Perhaps you can………… 
• I would like to suggest that………..
• May I suggest that………… 
• Could you please………..    
• I would highly appreciate if you……….. 
• Would it be a good idea to………..
• Perhaps it would be a good idea to………..

Asking for Information: 
• I would like to know about/if………..
• I am writing to inquire about………..
• I am writing to find out about………..
• What I am looking for is………..
• I would like you to inform me………..
• I would appreciate if you could provide me………..

Providing Information: 
• I would like to inform you that………..  
• Perhaps you should be informed that………… 
• I guess you would glad to know that………..
• Please be informed that………… 
• For your kind notification………..    
• I should let you know that………..

Giving good news: 
• I am happy to advise you that… (formal)
• I am pleased to inform you that… (semi-formal)
• I am delighted to tell you that… (informal)
• I thought you might like to know that… (informal)
• I am happy to inform you that… (semi-formal)

Giving bad news: 
• I regret to advise you that… (formal)
• I regret to inform you that… (semi-formal)
• I am sorry to tell you that… (informal)
• I am afraid I have some bad news… (informal)

Conveying regards: 
• Please convey my greeting and best wished to your parents.
• Please pass on my best wishes to your wife and children.
• Please give my best regards to your family.
• Please give my regards to your parents.
• My best wishes for your parents.

Concern/sympathy: 
• I am/was sorry to hear about…
• I am writing to express my concern about…
• It breaks my heart to hear that… (informal)
• I wish I could revert it in any way… (informal)

To End the letter:

Apology:
• Once again, I am sorry for any inconvenience caused……….
• I hope I did not cause you too much problem……….
• Please accept my apologies once more……….
• I am so sorry for the whole thing……….
• I hope you will accept my apologies……….
• Kindly accept my apologies ……….

Complaint:
• I expect to hear from you soon……….
• Hopefully, you will pay immediate attention to this matter ……….
• I highly expect your kind attention about the situation……….
• I want you to take immediate action about the misunderstanding……….

Request:  
• Thank you again for your attention to this matter……….
• Could you possibly resend the papers?……….
• I expect to hear from you again……….

Thanking:  
• Thanks.
• Thank you.
• Thanks a lot for.
• Thank you very much.
• I can’t thank you enough.
• I am extremely grateful for.
• No words can express my gratitude.

Wishing Good Luck:  
• I wish you a good trip ahead.
• I wish you good luck with your interview.
• Don’t worry, I’m sure you’ll do well.
• Wishing you all the best.

Providing Information: 
• I would like to inform you that I have already sent the papers you asked me to………..  
• Perhaps you should be informed that the last date has already been over………… 
• I hope this information will be helpful for you, please contact me for any other information ………..
• This is all I would like to inform you.Please feel free to contact me for any information…………

Expecting a reply from someone: 

• I am looking forward to hearing from you …….
• I am waiting to hear from you soon………..  
• I look forward to hearing from you soon………… 
• I am expecting to hear from you soon………..
• I am eagerly waiting for your response………… 
 

Closing the Letter:

• I look forward to hearing from you.
• I look forward to seeing you.
• I look forward to meeting you.
• I look forward to getting a reply from you soon.
• I really look forward to your cooperation in this.

Signing off:

Personal Letter: Yours truly, Yours ever,  Best regards, Best wishes, Many thanks, Love, Lots of love, All the best, Best wishes.
Official Letter: Yours sincerely, Yours faithfully, Yours obedient. 
Business Letter: Yours sincerely, Yours faithfully.

 

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