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Common paper sizes for printing

Common paper sizes for printing

Common paper sizes for printing

What are the common paper sizes used in printing?

This is a question we get asked a lot. It depends upon the purpose, your budget and who you are targeting, but there are a few standard sizes that are most commonly used in the design and print industry.

A sizes

For most printing applications we use the standard ‘A’ sizes in the UK.

Why? Because they can be cut out of larger sheets of standard printing paper economically.

Here are the main sizes, shown in millimetres.

A0: 841 x 1189 mm
A1: 594 x 841 mm
A2: 420 x 594 mm
A3: 297 x 420 mm
A4: 210 x 297 mm
A5: 148 x 210 mm
A6: 105 x 148 mm
A7: 74 x 105 mm

What’s the best size for a flyer or a leaflet?

A4: 210 x 297 mm
A5: 148 x 210 mm
A6: 105 x 148 mm
DL: 99 x 148mm

The most common sizes for promotional flyers and leaflets are A5, A6 and DL, as these are cheap to post and usually the perfect size for an overview of your main products or services.

Occasionally A4 size is used, but if it’s being used as a quick promotional item, A4 will tend to feature more information, which can put the prospect off reading it if they’re short on time.

What’s the best size for a brochure?

A4: 210 x 297 mm
A5: 148 x 210 mm

The first thing to consider is how you will be presenting the brochure. If you will be handing it out in person, A4 is a popular size, as a bigger brochure can be more impressive visually, contain more information and the recipient may be more likely to keep it.

If you are likely to be posting it out, A5 is the most cost effective size, as all A sizes larger than that will be charged at the large letter rate. Most printing companies offer an alternative size of 148, x 148mm, a square format, which does provide something a little different and still within standard letter posting size. However, envelopes to suit this size are harder to find and the size is quite small so you may struggle to fit what you need into this smaller size.

What’s the best size for a poster?

A0: 841 x 1189 mm
A1: 594 x 841 mm
A2: 420 x 594 mm
A3: 297 x 420 mm
A4: 210 x 297 mm

The first consideration when choosing a poster size is where it’s going to be displayed.

Sizes A0, A1 and A2 are best for being seen in large spaces, but they will need to be printed on a large format printer, which can be quite expensive as the inks aren’t cheap, especially if you want a lot of them printing.

A3 and A4 can usually be printed internally on an inkjet or laser printer. These are ideal if you want to display them in multiple locations, such as notice boards, or where there isn’t much display space available.

What’s the best size for a letterhead?

A4: 210 x 297 mm

This is the most popular size as it is most suitable for printing yourself, using a standard desktop printer.

What’s the best size for a compliment slip?

DL: 210mm wide x 99mm high

Although quirky and unusual sizes are sometimes used for compliment slips in order to stand out in the marketplace, the most widely used size is DL, which is 210 x 99mm. This is a third of A4 size and can therefore be printed economically out of an A4 sheet.

What’s the best size for a business card?

85mm x 55mm

It’s possible to get all sizes and shapes of business cards, but bespoke sizes and shapes can increase your printing costs significantly.

The most popular size for business cards is 85mm x 55mm, which can be used in a portrait or landscape orientation. This size fits easily into wallets, purses and standard sized business card holders.

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