In this lesson I’m going to show you the strategy and plan you need to follow in order to write a formal letter for the IELTS General Task 1. First of all, let’s take a task as an example:
You have seen an advertisement in the newspaper for a job working as a receptionist in a big hotel during the summer season. You decide to apply for the job. Write a letter to the manager of the hotel. In your letter,
- introduce yourself
- explain what former experience and skills you have in relation to the position
- explain why you’re interested in the job
Write at least 150 words.
You do NOT need to write any addresses.
This is your task. It is obviously a formal letter. Firstly, you have to begin your letter with “Dear”. If you don’t know the name of the person you’re writing to, you will write:
“Dear Sir / Madam,”
After that, things are pretty simple; you don’t need to feel anxious or confused about this task. Simply, you will use one paragraph for each of the points in the task. So, let’s read the first point again: “introduce yourself”.
So, in your first paragraph you will introduce yourself and of course you will state the reason of your writing this letter. So, let’s see:
I am writing to apply for the receptionist’s summer job in your hotel which was recently advertised in the newspaper. I am twenty four years old and I have graduated from the West London College where I studied Hotel and Tourism Management.”
As you can see, you both state the reason of your writing and you introduce yourself. Obviously, you will have to make some things up, but it won’t be difficult. Just use your imagination. The important thing is your grammar. Also, notice that I didn’t use contractions (I used “I am” instead of “I’m”) and I preferred passive voice because it is a formal letter.
Accordingly, you will write one paragraph for the second point and so on. Let’s read it: “explain what former experience and skills you have in relation to the position”. You will talk about your former experience and skills. After that, your last paragraph is going to be about the third point (explain why you’re interested in the job).
Lastly, you’re going to close your letter with these phrases:
“I am looking forward to hearing from you”.
Note that when you know the person’s name–for example, “Dear Mr. Jones” instead of “Dear Sir/Madam”–you will end your letter with “Yours sincerely” instead of “Yours faithfully”.
That’s all! Now you just need to practice and improve grammar, syntax, vocabulary and your spelling. If you’d like to see the rest of the essay you can do it here.
For extra help, you can also watch the video lesson: