Where to put the address on the envelope

Your letters will only get delivered if you write the address correctly on the envelope. The location of the addresses and postage stamps on German letters are the same as in North America and the rest of Europe.

The address of the recipient goes in the middle. The return address goes in the top left and the postage stamp in the top right. The section at the bottom must be left empty for the postal services.

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How to write the address on the envelope

Simple example

If you want to write to your friend Max Mustermann, this is how you would write his address on the envelope:

Max Mustermann (the person you are writing to)
Musterstraße 17 (street and door number)
12345 Berlin (postal code and city)
Deutschland

If the name is not on the mailbox

German apartments do not always have door numbers, so if the person's name is not on the mailbox, they will not receive your letter. You must include the name of the main tenant on the envelope.

For example, if you want to send a letter to Max at his girlfriend's Monika's address, you must address the letter like this1:

Max Mustermann (the person you are writing to)
c/o Monika Schmidt
(Monika has her name on the mailbox)
Musterstraße 17
12345 Berlin
Deutschland

If you sent a letter to Max's workplace, it would look like this:

Max Mustermann (the person you are writing to)
c/o BigBusiness GmbH
(Max works here)
Banhofstraße 1A
10115 Berlin
Deutschland

How to send letters by email

If you live in Germany, the Deutsche Post lets you send post by email. It's a lot faster than going to the post office. More information here (in German).