Is it OK to say: in a response to?


Suppose I am writing an email and I need a customer to send some information. I want to tell him to reply my email and send the data.

Please send us the required information in a response to this email.

Is the phrase "in a response to this email" valid? Does it make sense the way I intended to?


Posted 2018-10-17T07:10:39.370

Reputation: 348

2Why not use 'reply' instead of 'response'? – amI – 2018-10-17T07:27:25.130

1@amI What difference do you think that would make? – David Richerby – 2018-10-17T13:40:58.640

Your version is perfectly OK, a.toraby. Go with it. – TonyK – 2018-10-17T16:05:46.663

'Reply' is part of e-communication jargon and will elicit a specific type of response. When you avoid the convention, you plant the seed for a different type of response -- maybe you'll get a fax... – amI – 2018-10-18T02:22:03.663



You asked:

  • Is the phrase "in a response to this email" valid? Does it make sense the way I intended to?

The answer to both questions is yes – but that doesn’t mean you’ve communicated the information in the best way possible.

Personally, I’d be in favor of restructuring the sentence:

Please respond to this email to send us the required information.

If you really wanted to begin your sentence the way you did, you could consider using the preposition by instead of using in:

Please send us the required information by responding to this email.


Posted 2018-10-17T07:10:39.370

Reputation: 108 123

4+1. Also, "Please reply to this email with the required information" would work – Kevin – 2018-10-17T13:15:48.633

Why confuse the OP with such irrelevant re-phrasings? They are no better than the original, in my opinion. – TonyK – 2018-10-17T16:04:54.260

No need to mention "this email" really - that's obvious from the content. I'd pare down to simply, "Please reply with the required information". – Toby Speight – 2018-10-17T16:55:58.943

@TobyS - I'm not sure it's obvious. If you sent me an email requesting certain information, and said, "Please reply with the required information," what's to stop me from picking up the phone and calling you? If someone wants all the replies sent to the same inbox, then adding that bit about "to this email" might prove helpful. – J.R. – 2018-10-17T21:07:30.853

1@TonyK - In my experience, rephrasings seem to help learners understand the language better. I'm not claiming that my versions are far superior, but, given how many questions we get about prepositions, I wouldn't be surprised if presenting an option like by helps bring things into focus a bit. – J.R. – 2018-10-17T21:11:02.330


** "Please send us the required information in a response to this email."

You probably want to say instead:

"Please attach the required information in a reply to this email."

Or simply:

"Please attach the required information in your reply."

The words attach and reply are the dominant words used for e-mail software, so using the same vocabulary makes it clearer what you want your reader to do.


Posted 2018-10-17T07:10:39.370

Reputation: 544

2"attach" is used for attachments. If the OP wants the information in the body of the email, that is not the correct term. – Acccumulation – 2018-10-17T14:56:48.517


It makes sense, but it's a bit redundant: anything anyone does as a result of a request is, by definition, a response to that request. If you want to emphasize that you want the information in an email clearly marked by the email software as being part of the email chain, I recommend "Please reply to this email with the required information".


Posted 2018-10-17T07:10:39.370

Reputation: 2 884