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IELTS General Writing Task 1: Business Letter

IELTS Business Letter is a formal or semi-formal type of letter that is usually written when you need to write a letter to a company or an organisation.

Here is an example how the task may look like:

WRITING TASK 1 (General)

You should spend about 20 minutes on this task.

You work in an international company. You need to take some time off work. Write a letter to your employer. In your letter:

  • explain why you need this time off
  • give details of when you want this time off
  • say who can do your work when you are away

Write at least 150 words.

You do NOT need to write any addresses.

Begin your letter as follows:

Dear ... ,

Note! You will find the IELTS Business Letter Sample with grammar corrections and estimated band score down below.

IELTS Business Letter Structure & Vocabulary

We have listed the structure of a typical IELTS formal letter and a selection of useful language and phrases for you to use. It is important here to use a formal, neutral style, no contractions, exclamation marks, no colloquial language, no direct questions.

man writing a formal letter

BUSINESS LETTER

  • 1
    Dear Sir/Madam, (or name if given)
  • 2
    Explain who you are and why you are writing
  • 3
    Explanation in more detail: describe your situation and make it clear
  • 4
    Suggestions: what you expect, apologise if needed; be polite and positive
  • 5
    Formal ending, name, signature
  1. Dear Sir/Madam, (or name if given)
  2. Explain who you are and why you are writing
    • I am writing in regard to books I borrowed from the library on July 15, 2018 and never returned.
    • I am writing to apologise.
    • I would like to apply for one of the scholarships I saw advertised in …
    • I am writing to inform you that I will be leaving the company.
  3. Explanation in more detail: describe your situation and make it clear
    • At present I am training to be a ... and I finish my course at the end of June.
    • The reason I apply for the scholarship is that ...
  4. Suggestions: what you expect, apologise if needed; be polite and positive
    • I understand that other students may need those books and deeply apologise for the inconvenience. I will return the books as soon as possible.
    • I would appreciate being given the opportunity to ... and would be very grateful if you would consider my application.
  5. Formal ending, name, signature
    • I look forward to hearing from you!
    • Yours sincerely, ... (you know the name of person you are writing to)
    • Yours faithfully, ... (you don't know the name!)

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IELTS Business Letter Sample (Corrected)

You work in an international company. You need to take some time off work. Write a letter to your employer. In your letter:

  • explain why you need this time off
  • give details of when you want this time off
  • say who can do your work when you are away

Begin as follows: Dear ... ,

Dear Mr. Smith,

I am writing to ask for an unpaid holidayleave for two weeks. Unfortunately, my sister had a car crash in Thailand and she needs a kidney donor and since I am her closest relative I might be the only one who could save her.

I would like to fly out as soon as possible, as her condition is getting worse very fast according to doctor Liu's phone call. I have already booked the first available flight to Asia and the return tickets as well. Therefore, the exact period of time of my absence would be two weeks starting from the 21st of January. I will arrive toback in the UK in the early morning of the 7th of February and I would be able to start working atthe same day.

Since my colleagues Mr White and Mr Black both have a full overview of my duties, they could very well do my work during the abovementioned weeks. However, I could be contacted in urgent mattersshould anything urgent arise / in a matter of great urgency.

Please consider this extreme situation I am facing at the moment and allow me to have this time off work.

Yours sincerely,

Jane Stafford

(193 words)

7.5

Band Score Estimate
(prior to corrections)

Brief comments:

  • to be in / to go to a place
  • arrive in/at
  • the UK
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