State Abbreviations

50 States Abbreviations map
US Map with State Abbreviations

State Abbreviations for the 50 US States

The US has 50 states, a national capital along with commonwealths, and other territories around the world. Each state has its own unique shortened name codes used in written documents and mailing addresses.

The state abbreviations are always in the same format: two letter abbreviations where both letters are uppercase and no periods or spaces between each letter. This format is the official USPS postal abbreviation.

When writing for  text or in references, traditional abbreviations are used. The names of states should be always spelled out when they are written in sentences.  

Traditional Abbreviations

Traditional abbreviations were used before the two-letter postal codes became standard. The abbreviations are sometimes still used in note taking and text writing.  

Eight states are never abbreviated in text though; Alaska, Hawaii, Idaho, Iowa, Maine, Ohio, Texas and Utah. It’s easy to remember that rule. States with five or fewer letters, plus Alaska and Hawaii, are never abbreviated.

Below is a list of state abbreviations, both two-letter and traditional for all of the 50 US states and other territories outside the Union. 

US STATEPOSTAL ABBREVIATIONSTANDARD ABBREVIATION
AlabamaALAla.
AlaskaAKAlaska
ArizonaAZAriz.
ArkansasARArk.
CaliforniaCACalif.
ColoradoCOColor.
ConnecticutCTConn.
DelawareDEDel.
FloridaFLFla.
GeorgiaGAGa.
HawaiiHIHawaii
IdahoIDIdaho
IllinoisILIll.
IndianaINInd.
IowaIAIowa
KansasKSKan.
KentuckyKYKy.
LouisianaLALa.
MaineMEMaine
MarylandMDMd.
MassachusettsMAMass.
MichiganMIMich.
MinnesotaMNMinn.
MississippiMSMiss.
MissouriMOMo.
MontanaMTMont.
NebraskaNENeb.
NevadaNVNev.
New HampshireNHN.H.
New JerseyNJN.J.
New MexicoNMN.M.
New YorkNYN.Y.
North CarolinaNCN.C.
North DakotaNDN.D.
OhioOHOhio
OklahomaOKOkla.
OregonOROre.
PennsylvaniaPAPa.
Rhode IslandRIR.I.
South CarolinaSCS.C.
South DakotaSDS.Dak.
TennesseeTNTenn.
TexasTXTex.
UtahUTUtah
VermontVTV.T.
VirginiaVAVa.
WashingtonWAWash.
West VirginiaWVW.Va.
WisconsinWIWis.
WyomingWYWyo.
Territory/
Commonwealth
Postal AbbreviationStandard Abbreviation
District of ColumbiaDCD.C.
GuamGUGuam
Marshall IslandsMHM.I.
Northern Mariana IslandMPCNMI
Puerto RicoPRP.R. or PUR
Virgin IslandsVIV.I.
Military “State”Abbreviation
Armed Forces AfricaAE
Armed Forces AmericasAA
Armed Forces CanadaAE
Armed Forces EuropeAE
Armed Forces Middle EastAE
Armed Forces PacificAP

Abbreviations for the United States 

The United States may be abbreviated to U.S. when used as an adjective, but in formal writing, it’s customarily spelled out. Most often, and especially in casual writing, remove the periods to spell out the United States as US.