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Snail Mail Writing Tips
Read these simple tips and tricks for successful snail mail letter exchange

You don't have to be an English major to write successful letters to your pals. All you have to do is write from your heart and use your creativity. Here are a few suggestions for writing snail mail...

  • Hand-write your letter as neatly as you can and always use your own words.
  • Don't just answer your pals questions, ask a few of your own so you can keep the letters flowing between you.
  • Always tell your pen pal a little bit about yourself and why you think you would be a great pen pal
  • Never tell someone that you expect to hear back from them soon. Invite them to write you back if they are interested in being your pal.
  • Talk about what is going on around you. A pen pal from another country will not have the same access to the things you do.
  • Grab an envelope and add some character to it. You can use doodlings, stickers, gift wrap, pictures, glitter or more. Just make sure the address is clear and is easily found and read by the postal service.
  • Print out some unique stationery or create your own. If you want, you can purchase stationery that reflects your personality.
  • Make your letter colorful by using different colored pens or markers. Make every other line a different color, highlight feeling words with color, colorize ever fourth word, etc.
  • Use Hieroglyphics in your letter. For example, draw an eye for the letter I or draw a horse instead of writing out the word.


    I am going to share my years of pen pal experience with you and tell you how I add flare to all my snail mail letters. You don't need to send all of these at once. Purchase a small package or medium sized envelope and choose one or two of the following to include with your letter. These are all relatively inexpensive to make and send through the mail.

    What To Send In A Small Package

  • Postcards From Home
    Choose a postcard that reflects a major attraction in your city. If you don't have a major attraction, choose a postcard that reflects the beauty of your city.
  • Newspaper Clippings
    Did something unique happen in your home town? Are you featured in your school newsletter or local newspaper? Send your pen pal the clipping.
  • Local Folklore and Jive
    If your home town has a unique history, share it with your pal. Send them a local ghost story, tale or tidbit of real history. Write down all the local slang phrases with their meanings.
  • Tapes & CDs of Local Entertainers
    This was always a big deal with my pen pals. They loved it. Your pal will not be able to have access to this kind of entertainment unless your local talents become famous.
  • Tape Your Letter
    Purchase a 60 minute tape and record your letter. Have your family say, "Hi" to your pal. Even have your pet vocalize on the tape. Why not tape a minute or two of your favourite TV program or music tape.
  • Photos
    Only with your parents permission, send your pen pal a picture of you and your family. How about sending a picture of your beloved pet? Vacation pictures are always fun too. You can even doodle on your picture and make it funny.
  • A Piece Of You
    How about sending your pal a locket of your hair. If you died your hair, send them a locket of before and after the dye. Or, send them a sample of the perfume you wear.
  • Confetti
    Confetti is always fun to add in your envelopes. When your pen pal opens their letter, the confetti usually falls all over the place. It's fun. There are hundred's of different types of confetti.
  • Stickers & Patches
    Send your pal stickers that reflect your city, interests or hobbies. International pals love to receive stickers that have your countries flags or symbols on them. Same goes for patches they can sew on clothing or bags.
  • Doodles & Drawings
    Something made just for them. Find out what their interests are and then sketch a picture or cartoon for you pal. Print out and color a picture. How about sending your pal some coloring pages to pass their spare time away.
  • Literature/Poetry
    Write a poem about your pal and type it on pretty paper. Make sure you sign it with a pen. Your pal can frame it and put it up in their room. How about sending them a passage from your favourite book or a copy of a friendship poem.
  • Bookmarks, Clips, Bracelets and More
    Why not make a small craft and send it to your pal. There are a lot of little things you can make and send out. Friendship bracelets, bookmarks, paper dolls, etc.
  • Homemade Cards
    Create an unique greeting card to send your pal. This takes care of all the hassle of finding, "just the right card". You can even send them blank cards to fill in themselves and send to their friends.
  • Coupons
    Print out a coupon and send it to your pal. Tell them they can redeem it whenever they want or give them a time limit.
  • Recipes
    One of the best things we traded as kids was recipes. My pals had the best snack recipes for summer. Print out a recipe card and write in your favourite treat, snack, drink or meal.
  • Gift Tags
    Print out some gift tags for holidays and special occasions. Send the tags to your pal so they can use them during the holidays.
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