IELTS Sample Letters for Writing Task 1

Here is a collection of sample letters to help you prepare for IELTS writing task 1 for the General Training Paper (students taking the Academic Paper will not get letters for writing task 1). The IELTS sample letters below are a range of personal, semi-formal and formal which are all common in task 1.

Letter of Instruction

You have just spent a week with a friend on holiday. When you got home, you realised you had left your wallet there.

Write a letter to your friend. In your letter:

  • thank your friend for the holiday
  • explain that you left your wallet in their house
  • give them instructions of how to send it back to you


Asking for a Letter of Reference

You are applying for a job and need a letter of reference.

Write a letter to a former teacher. In your letter:

  • give details of the job
  • explain why it is important to you
  • suggest what information your teacher could put in the reference


Letter of Advice

A friend has written to you asking for advice about a problem at work. You have had a similar problem in the past.

Write a reply to your friend. In your letter:

  • tell your friend you understand the problem
  • explain what happened to you in the past
  • suggest possible solutions to the problem.


Letter of Complaint

Work is being done on the street where you live. The noise is disturbing you.

Write a letter of complaint to your local council. In your letter:

  • introduce yourself
  • explain what the problem is
  • suggest solutions to the problem


Letter of Application

You saw an advert in the newspaper asking for volunteers to help run a charity event.

Write a letter of application to the organisers. In your letter:

  • explain why you are interested in helping
  • give details suitable past experience
  • suggest ways you might help with the event


Letter of Request

You need to take leave from your work of over one month for personal reasons.

Write a letter to your boss. In your letter:

  • explain the reason for the leave and the length of leave you need
  • explain how you will keep up-to-date while you’re away
  • suggest how your work could be covered while you are away


Letter of Resignation

You have decided to resign from your work in order to try a new field.

Write a letter of resignation to your boss. In your letter:

  • tell your boss of your decision and explain why you are leaving
  • explain what you have learnt from your current job and how you feel about leaving
  • ask for a letter of reference


Letter of Arrangement

You have organised to go on holiday with your friend. However, you must change your plans.

Write a letter to your friend. In your letter:

  • tell them how much you are looking forward to the holiday
  • explain why you must change your plans
  • suggest alternative arrangements


Letter of Complaint

You recently ordered something online. When the delivery came it was not complete.

Write a letter to the company. In your letter:

  • explain what you ordered and what was missing from your delivery
  • explain the importance of this delivery
  • ask for a replacement item to be sent


Letter of Acceptance

A friend has offered you some work in his company. You are currently employed and not able to start for three months.

Write a reply to your friend. In your letter:

  • give details of what you know about his company
  • explain your current situation
  • give your answer to the offer and explain why
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