Writing an out of office English email

Finally time for your summer holiday? Before you leave the office, write a clear out of office English email so your business partners have the information they need while you’re gone.

Here are some steps to help:

  1. Be clear about the dates you are away, and what date you will return.
    • For example: “I will be out of the office from 10 July to 14 July inclusive.” or “I am out of the office from 10 July to 14 July, and will return to the office on 17 July.”
  2. State whether or not their message will be forwarded.
    • For example: “Due to data protection laws in Germany, your message will not be forwarded.” (Since many countries do not have data protection laws like those found in Germany, it’s probably a good idea to say why their message won’t be forwarded.)
  3. Give the name and contact information of a colleague who can help them.
    • For example: “For urgent matters, please contact ((colleague’s name)), who can be reached at ((phone number)), and by email at ((email address)).
  4. Add a friendly closing
    • For example: “Thank you in advance.” or “I look forward to communicating with you upon my return.”

By following these steps, you can be sure that your out of office English email will keep your business partners informed while you’re away.

Mindy Ehrhart Krull
About the author

Originally from the US, Mindy Ehrhart Krull holds a master's degree in journalism and has been teaching English and working as an author, editor and proofreader in Germany since 2008.

At DELS, she leads a team of several English trainers and language professionals.

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