122 Addressing

122.1 Destination Address

  1. At least the entire right half of the address side of the envelope, package, or card should be reserved for the destination address, postage, labels, and postal notations.
  2. Addresses must be printed in ink or typewritten. Pencil is unacceptable.
  3. The name and address of addressee must be written legibly with roman letters and arabic numbers, all placed lengthwise on one side of the item. For parcels, addresses should also be written on a separate slip enclosed in the parcel.
  4. Addresses in Russian, Greek, Arabic, Hebrew, Cyrillic, Japanese, or Chinese characters must bear an interline translation in English of the names of the post office and country of destination. If the English translation is not known, the foreign language words must be spelled in roman characters (print or script). See 292.41 and 293.91 for an optional addressing procedure that applies only to direct country sacks of International Priority Airmail (IPA) or International Surface Air Lift (ISAL) mail, respectively.
  5. Mail may not be addressed to a person in one country “in care of” a person in another country.
  6. The name of the sender and/or addressee may not be in initials except where they are an adopted trade name.
  7. Mail may not be addressed to Boxholder or Householder.
  8. The following exceptional form of address, in French or a language known in the country of destination, may be used on printed matter: the addressee’s name or Occupant.
  9. Example: Mr. Thomas Clark or Occupant

  10. The house number and street address or box number must be included when mail is addressed to towns or cities.
  11. The address of items sent to General Delivery must indicate the name of the addressee and the country of destination. The use of initials; figures; simple, given names; or fictitious names is not permitted on articles addressed for general delivery.
  12. The delivery address should be printed in all uppercase letters. The name of the place of destination and the name of the country of destination must be written in capital letters together with the correct post code number or delivery zone number, if any. The last line of the address must show only the country name, written in full (no abbreviations) and in capital letters. If possible, the address should have no more than five lines. For example:
  13. Formatting table


    Exception: To Canada, there must be two spaces between the province abbreviation and the postal code, as shown below between “ON” and “KIA 0B1”:

    Formatting table

122.2 Return Address

Due to heightened security, many foreign postal administrations require complete sender and addressee information in roman letters and arabic numerals on postal items. The complete address of the sender, including ZIP Code and country of origin, should be shown in the upper left corner of the address side of the envelope, package, or card. Only one return address may be used. It must be located so that it does not affect either the clarity of the address of destination or the application of service labels and notations (postmarks, etc.). Unregistered items bearing a return address in another country are accepted only at the sender’s risk. In the case of bulk mailings, the return address must be in the country of mailing. For the purpose of this section, a “bulk mailing” is 200 or more pieces mailed at the same time by the sender.