A letter of complaint

A letter of complaint

Learn how to write a letter of complaint.

Do the preparation task first. Then read the text and tips and do the exercises.


Reading text

Dear Sir/Madam,

I am writing to express my dismay at the service at your Eden Hill branch on Saturday 14 January.

I often collect prescriptions from the pharmacy on behalf of my grandmother, Mrs Elaine Bingham. On this occasion there were two prescriptions: one for 10 x 50 mg Kendomol and one for 50 x 100 mg Leoprone. I was served quickly even though there appeared to be only one pharmacist on duty. However, as I was leaving I saw that I had been given 500 mg tablets of Kendomol. This is ten times stronger than the prescription called for.

If I hadn't noticed the difference between the prescription and the actual tablets, my grandmother could have taken a dangerous overdose of Kendomol. I would be worried about getting any future prescriptions at Eden Hill.

The pharmacist apologised and corrected the mistake but I wanted to bring it to your attention. I think it happened because there were not enough staff on duty. I understand that mistakes happen but there needs to be a minimum of two pharmacists at all times so all prescriptions can be checked.

I hope you can take steps to make sure this mistake does not happen again.

Yours faithfully,

Roger Bingham


  1. Focus on the most important facts. Don't give unnecessary background information.
  2. Make sure you include:
    • the reason for writing (e.g. I am writing to ...)
    • what went wrong
    • what you would like to happen now.
  3. Complaint letters are usually written in a formal style.
  4. Use passives to be less direct and more formal, e.g. I was served quickly.
  5. Use Yours faithfully to sign off if you don't know the name of the person you're writing to.

Task 1

Task 2

Task 3


Worksheet100.2 KB

Language level


Average: 4 (41 votes)
Profile picture for user OlaIELTS

Submitted by OlaIELTS on Thu, 07/05/2020 - 00:43

Yes. I had. It's about non receiving of notification for an exam.

Submitted by Huini on Mon, 20/04/2020 - 14:37

Dear Sir/Madam, I am writing to express my dismay at the ride-sharing service I received from Uber on Friday 15 February. I often use your Apps in my daily transportations. I always prefer your Apps over other ride-sharing Apps, due to its well-known, more reliable and trusted services. On this occasion, as like a daily routine, I called on a ride to move Lalbag to Farmgate and finished this ride as like other days. Unfortunately, the apps showed 500 BDT, where the estimated fare was 100 BDT when I started my ride. That's mean Uber Apps calculated 5 times fare than the usual. This is a misleading fare. The driver realized this matter, but he refused to take the usual fare and received miscalculating fare since he has to give the fare shown on the screen. The driver told me that this type of mistake sometimes happened and recommended me to complain to Uber. Therefore, I wanted to bring it to your attention. I think that happened because there was a problem with the Apps during the ride. I would like a refund the difference as soon as possible. Yours faithfully, Huini

Submitted by Valerielegoff on Wed, 15/04/2020 - 16:56

Dear Madame/Sir, I am writing to express my dismay at the cleaning service of the town of Brussels. This afternoon, I was walking in the streets near the royal theater and I needed to put something in the trash. But all the rubbish bins were full ! So the consequences was that many people had put their garbage next to the bin, on the floor. And it was very very dirty ! I always throw my waste in a rubbish bin but this time, I couldn't. Most of time, I'm angry about people who throw their garbage in the streets, but this time, nobody should be blamed for such a behavior. And instead of enjoying my stroll, I felt sad... I think this is a shame in such a town as Brussels ! Our city should be an example for many countries because it's the capital of Europe. What I suggest is to hire more employees to clean the streets and the squares during the day, and to install more rubbish bins all over the town. I hope my letter will reach the target and that people will be proud of been a citizen from one of the most beautiful city in Europe. Yours faithfully, Valérie

Submitted by jazmin marquez on Wed, 15/04/2020 - 12:33

Yes, a couple of years ago when I bought a desk and paid half in advance. Well, the desk was never delivered, so I made a complaint but it was not answered. As a last option, I went with the police to the store, and I was aware that I had been robbed.
Profile picture for user Magedelabd

Submitted by Magedelabd on Fri, 03/04/2020 - 13:48

Yes I just filed a complaint against a nearby hospital. Where my mother had a coma and she hsd to inter the incentive care unit in Semoha hospital . I complained about their very expensive price list and also I complained about their rools where they don't accept any patients unless they pay in advance a big amount of money. Also the service there is vely bad and the staff are very bad . This is a normal thing to happen in such country where there is no low eforcement supporting people to get their rights

Submitted by Vannalack Chan… on Thu, 20/02/2020 - 03:18

Dear sir, I'm writing to express my disappointment with the service at your petrol station last Sunday. I have been a regular customer of your service for two years since I had settled in this town. I often stop by this station every weekend to have my car washed and eat at the cafe. Sometimes I choose this place as a co-working space where I enjoy working and sharing ideas with my colleagues. Last Sunday I visited there with my family and told your filling attendant to fully fill the gas before washing my car. Then I gave the key to him and I went to order my drinks at the coffee shop. Unluckily, my car still wasn't washed even I had been waiting for two hours. He admitted he forget what I had said as he had to manage many things at the same time. I told him next time there should be a queue number for all customers so that he would manage it easier. I would like you to bring this matter into your attention. Yours Faithfully, John

Submitted by Muhammad Yaser on Mon, 20/01/2020 - 07:29

Dear Sir, could you help me with this letter please! if it is right or not. Residents of Sixth district of Kabul Honourble Presidency of Municipality, Subject: garbage collecting It becomes about two months that garbage piles accumulated in the area is not removed, and it caused health and environmental problems for the residents of the area. Thus residents of the area respectfully request from the honourable presidency to take pragmatic steps for solving this problem.
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Submitted by Kirk Moore on Mon, 20/01/2020 - 14:28

In reply to by Muhammad Yaser


Hello Muhammad Yaser

I'm afraid we don't correct our users' texts, but I can say that your letter if completely intelligible. My main suggestion would be to say 'It has been about two months since garbage has been accumulating and not removed'.

All the best


The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by gicandrade on Mon, 11/11/2019 - 09:50

Dear, I’m writing to express my dismay at the services assistant services of Apple in Park Avenue on this Sunday morning. It was terrible. First of all, there wasn’t any customer service to help us with doubts. I spent 2 hours there for nothing. I left the store unattended. I was wondering the new pc and if it is compatible with my old smartphone. However, I remained a long time without service. If I hadn’t read some information on web, I would never have known the correct function of the pc. In other words, I don’t need you for nothing. That my conclusion. Such an expensive product, and you still play with consumers. That’s sounds like a joke! After two hours waiting for your complacency, I left. In other occasion, my friend and I came back to the same store. For my surprise, the manager was a colleague. I told him what happened a few days ago and he said that there was no enough customer service, but the problem had been resolved. I was not happy with the answer and I decided to write this complaint. I hope you can take steps to make sure this mistake does not happen again, Yours faithfully,

Submitted by Maitane on Thu, 18/07/2019 - 12:03

Yes, I have. Two months ago, I bought a mobile phone on a website, but the delivery didn't arrive. So, I decided to make a complaint to the company, and finally, they sent me the order.