A letter is a traditional form of communication between people, in which a sender writes a text and sends it to a receiver. Letters can be formal or informal according to their function and the relationship between the sender and the receiver.
In a formal letter, the relationship between the two people is distant because it is usually between people who do not know each other personally. A formal language is used, then, and they are letters that usually have a predetermined structure. They may have business or commercial purposes, among others.
On the other hand, the informal letter is one in which both parties to the communication have an affective or close relationship. In this case, the sender is allowed to choose the structure and elements of the letter and informal language is usually used. They are written for different purposes such as: invitations, greetings, thanks, among others.
They are sent in an envelope with the name and address of the recipient on the front and the name and address of the sender on the back. They are usually sent by mail or can be hand delivered by a messenger or by the sender himself.
How to write a formal letter
The general letter is a functional text used to communicate ideas, thoughts; to relate real or imaginary experiences; to express emotions or sensations; to inform about events that have occurred; to describe a situation, objects, people, and so on. In short, all kinds of communicative intentions can be expressed in a letter; its wording will depend on the objective of the sender and the addressee to whom it is addressed.
There are two types of letters, informal and formal. The informal letter is used to maintain communication with close and trusted people. The content of these letters is personal and the language used can be relaxed.
UEAH (2007). The formal letter. Social, personal, and work-related functional texts. Retrieved August 15, 2016 from http://repository.uaeh.edu.mx/bitstream/bitstream/handle/123456789/9533/LEC11.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y
Structure of a formal letter
Formal letters are an instrument of communication widely used in different fields and that is why it is important to know the singularities of this tool and that is why, through this publication, we will talk about the singularities it has and we will give you all the relevant guidelines with examples and we will even try to provide you with some editable formats in case it is necessary.
These documents are absolutely different from those related to the structure of recommendations and requests, using to their credit a completely formal language, having distinction next to different writings that can be elaborated for correspondence purposes. Like other structures, letters of this type have a high level of quality according to their elements and characteristics.
It is not necessary to have a wide repertoire of writing skills to write a formal document. However, what is necessary is to have a basic knowledge of spelling and writing; to know how to spell words correctly and to separate paragraphs according to their line limit.
Sample formal letter for children
For our task, we must be clear about the differences between a formal letter and an informal one? A priori there are not as many as it may seem at first glance, but, although they are few, you should know them very well to avoid making mistakes in either of the two modalities. We will now look in detail at the main differences between formal and informal mail:
This form is timeless, that is, you can use it at any time. Instead of the first name you can also use the surname of the addressee, if you choose this option you have to put before Mr.(man) or Mrs.(woman), for example: Dear Mr. Garcia.
Informal: introduction and open structure. Example: How are you, Maria? I hope you are well, I was going to ask you about what you told me the other day, I don’t know if you remember it, how are the courses at the academy?
In this part of the mail we must remember the polite treatment we are using. The mails allow us to write a little bit more compared to the traditional letter. However, if we write a letter, we should not overdo it with our message. On the contrary, the post and the informal letter give us the full freedom to write whatever we want.