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Unit 9: Email etiquette

Don’t be rude! Be sure to follow these fundamental rules on what to write and what not to write in your emails.

Email etiquette

In Task 1, you will see the rules that are left blank in the article below.

Email dos and don'ts

A lot of people still have problems writing emails. I should know – I receive badly written emails every day! So I hope these suggestions will help.

Rule 1:

Always check you've got the right name in the 'To' box. And make sure your email only goes to the people who need to read it. Remember that if you reply to all, then everyone will get your email. Does the whole sales team really need to read your email to one person about something unimportant?

Rule 2:

This sounds obvious, but don't forget to attach them! A word of advice – attach the file you want to send before you start writing. That way, you can't forget to attach it!

Rule 3:

No. If you write 'CAN YOU LET ME KNOW THIS WEEK?' you are basically shouting at your reader. They will think you are very rude. So just don't do it.

Rule 4:

Short emails sometimes sound rude. People won't read very long emails. Keep emails short, but remember to be polite and friendly, too.

Rule 5:

This is important, especially if it's a work email. If you make mistakes in your email, people will think you also make mistakes in your work. So always check everything carefully. Ask a colleague to read and check it before you hit 'Send'.


Language level

Intermediate: B1


hello sir,

I am Issa. I am new the using of this web. i am asking to assist me how write an email with my supervisor when I want to request him on leave ( holiday)

Hello again Issa,

I would suggest you do an internet search for 'example email leave request' or something similar. I'm sure that you can find several good examples.

Depending on your boss, I would suggest making it neither informal nor very formal -- in most business situations, a polite, direct message using simple language is the best option.

If you have any specific question about a sentence you find in the example email, you can ask us here.

All the best,
The LearnEnglish Team

This is an useful website for me to learn and reinforce my English skills. After I went through 9 units, I found that I have acquired a lot of knowledge and more confident on writing email. Thank you very much.


I always use email. So that is useful for me and easy to understand more than earlier.


Pls tell me, How to ask in a polite manner for the right set of information from a client of a company if they have not provided the required set of information/ have sent wrong details.


Hello Ashwini,

I'm afraid we can't write the letter for you, but I can give you some advice.

The key things to remember are to be as clear as possible and to be polite in your request.

Start with a formal salutation.

Then explain why you are writing, using polite expressions. 


Some useful phrases:

  • I'm writing in connection with...
  • I'm afraid there is a problem with...
  • The information we need is...
  • We would be very grateful if you could supply this information at your earliest convenience


Best wishes,


The LearnEnglish Team

Hi ..

When I write email and send wrong attachment, how to appoligize on email ?
Please check this sentence :

Depply sorry for send you wrong attachment.
Please find attached the correct attachment.
Thank you and sorry for this inconvenience.


Hello Astriana,

I would make a few slight changes (see below) but overall that's good!

'I'm very sorry for sending you the wrong attachment. Please find attached the correct one. Thank you and I'm sorry for the inconvenience.'

All the best,
The LearnEnglish Team

this lesson is very useful for me . Thanks for team of BC

This Lesson is very useful for me. Thanks a lot BC Team. Be paid more useful Lessons for us.