How many people I can send one email to?

Outlook Hints and Tips

If you intend to send one email to many recipients you may face some restrictions

Bulk Mailing

Let's start with a simple rule of thumb.  If you intend to send one email to thousands of recipients it is best to avoid using your email program (e.g. Microsoft Outlook).  Instead you should use a bulk mailing program like Mailchimp or Constant Contact

The advantages of this include:

  • The facility to personalise each email (e.g. "Hello Mary")
  • Embedding pictures and creating professional layouts
  • The ability to view live statistics on who has opened the email or clicked links
  • To be able to schedule a date and time to send
  • No need to wait whilst it is sending
  • People can unsubscribe themselves from your list (A legal requirement in Europe)

However if you intend to send one email to 20 recipients or less - you might want to consider placing all your contacts in the Bcc field and sending this way.  Why is using Bcc good etiquette and how to use it?

So what are the limits?

It mainly depends on your email provider.

Most email providers will restrict how many people you can send one email to for reasons of security and anti-spamming

So as an example to date (June 2022):

  • Gmail - you can send up to 100 recipients via email client software (such as Outlook) or up to 500 from the Gmail web mail
  • (also known as Hotmail or MSN) - 100 recipients per email, 300 messages per day
  • Yahoo - 100 recipients per email, 500 messages per day
  • AOL - 100 recipients per day
  • Apple iCloud (aka  1,000 recipients per day and 500 per email
  • Xmail - 500 recipients per email - no limit of individual emails per day.

So one work-around is to send your email message multiple times to batches of say 80 recipients.  However, your amil provider may see this as 'suspicious'.

To reiterate.  If you regularly wish to send emails to a large number of people you are best using a mailing list program as listed at the beginning of this article.