How to Address Wedding Invitations

How to Address Wedding Invitations

For most of us, hand-addressing snail mail seems like a foreign task, much less formally addressing wedding invitation envelopes. The etiquette and protocol for different household situations can be confusing, but we're here to help uncomplicate it. In the United states, wedding invitation addressing tends to look like this:

Attendee's Full Name with Title
Street Address (written out, no abbreviations)
Apartment/Unit Number (if necessary)
City, State (written out, no abbreviations)
5-digit Zip Code
Mr. John Smith
123 Palmetto Boulevard
Apartment 4D
Miami, Florida


A Guide to Invitation Address Etiquette

One of the most difficult parts of addressing your wedding invitation is figuring out the first "Addressee" line. If it's an individual or a more traditional household, that part may be easier, but what happens if someone s nonbinary, or if both partners are doctors or if two married partners have different last names? Here's a quick guide:

Addressing Envelopes to Individuals

To a male identifying guest, 18+ years old Mr. John Snow
To a female identifying guest, 18+ years old Ms. Rachel Smith
To a nonbinary guest, 18+ years old Mx. Taylor Anthony


Addressing Envelopes to Unmarried Couples

If your primary guest is in a relationship, but they don't live together Mr. John Snow and guest
If your primary guest is in a relationship and they do live together (each name receives its own line) Ms. Rachel Smith
Mx. Taylor Anthony
If the couple is engaged

Mr. John Snow
Ms. Jane Geller


The Future Mr. and Mrs. John Snow
(though, some think this is bad luck)


Addressing Envelopes to Married Couples, Same Last Name

Cisgender, Heterosexual Couples Mr. and Mrs. John Snow
LGBTQ Couples Ms. Rachel and Mx. Taylor Anthony
Cisgender, Heterosexual Couples, when the husband is a doctor or has an honorific title (Judge, Sargent, etc.) Dr. and Mrs. John Snow
Cisgender, Heterosexual Couples, when the wife is a doctor or has an honorific title Dr. Jane and Mr. John Snow
LGBTQ Couples with the same last name, when one or both are doctors or have honorific titles Dr. Rachel and Sgt. Taylor Anthony
Cisgender, Heterosexual Couples, when both have are doctors or have honorific titles Rev. Jane and Dr. John Snow


Addressing Envelopes to Married Couples, Different Last Names

All Married Couples regardless of gender, sexual orientation, or profession Mrs. Jane Geller and Mr. John Snow


Addressing Envelopes to Families

Non-traditional Style Mr. and Mrs. John Snow and family
Traditional Style (parents' names one first line and children's name on second line

Ms. Rachel and Mx. Taylor Anthony
Miss Sally Anthony

Male child under 18, receives no title Phillip Snow
Female child under 18 Miss Sally Anthony


NOTE: Etiquette states that children over the age of 18 should receive their own invitation, whether they still live at home or not.

Key Takeaways

The most important things to know when addressing your wedding invitation are:

  • What is your guest's relationship status?
  • How do your guests like to be addressed? What are their pronouns?
  • Do your married guests share a last name?
  • If your married guests don't share a last name professionally, do they prefer to be addressed by a singular last name personally?
  • For families, what are the children's names and ages?
  • Do the children still live at home? If no, you'll need to get their address.
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