General Rule

Spell out the numbers one through nine. Use numerals for 10 and above.


  • Percentages that include decimals – 8.9 per cent
  • Fractions – 8¾
  • Currency – $5
  • Addresses – 7 Killdeer St.

Avoid starting a sentence with a number. If there is no way around it, then the number should be spelled out.

Numbers with Four or more Digits

Commas are used to separate three-digit groups, except for house numbers, phone numbers, years, and other serial numbers.

  • 4,000 not 4000 or 4 000

Avoid using too many zeros.

  • 338.4 billion
  • 8 million (not 8,000,000)


Use “per cent” (with a space between) to express all percentages. The % symbol is acceptable only when space is limited (in headlines, for example) or in tables, charts, or on the web.

Number Ranges

Use an en dash (slightly longer than a hyphen) between two numbers to indicate a range.

  • pages 13–42

When number ranges are preceded by “from” or “between,” use “to” or “through” and “and.”

  • from 1956 to 1983
  • between 80 and 100

Telephone Numbers

The following is Queen’s style for telephone numbers.

  • 613-533-6000 ext. 75697
  • 1-800-234-5678


Do not use full-sized numerals separated by a slash to express fractions. Use fraction characters (or superscript/subscript).

  • 1¾ not 1-3/4

Spell out and hyphenate simple fractions.

  • Amelia is two-thirds of the way through the book.


Use numerals and the appropriate symbols to represent currency. There is no space between the symbol and the numeral

  • $4.99, €200

Very large sums of money can be expressed using a mixture of numerals and words.

  • $7 million, not $7,000,000
  • Do not write $7 million dollars
  • Use a hyphen when it appears as a compound adjective
    • a $7-million construction project
  • $7M can be used sparingly if space is limited – for example, in headlines or article titles.

School Grades

Grade 8, but eighth grade

Dates and Times


Spell out the first nine as words; use digits for 10 and above.

  • the fourth century, the 19th century (do not use superscript)


Spell out decades (twenties, thirties, eighties, etc.) when the century is clear. When using numerals, do not use an apostrophe before the “s.” An apostrophe precedes the shortened numerical form of the decade.

  • 1940s, the forties, the mid-1940s


Abbreviate the following months: Jan., Feb., Aug., Sept., Oct., Nov., and Dec.

Spell out all months when they stand alone or with a year alone.

  • January, January 2002, but Jan. 14, 2002


Do not abbreviate days of the week unless they appear in tables. In that case, Sun., Mon., Tues., Wed., Thurs., Fri., and Sat.


Show dates with the month first, date second and year third

  • Nov. 17, 2006


Do not include periods in am and pm with a space after the number.

  • 9 am (not 9 a.m. or 9:00 a.m.), 6:30 pm
  • 1–5 pm; not 1 pm – 5 pm, but 11 am – 2 pm
  • use noon and midnight (not 12 am or 12 pm) to avoid confusion


When writing dates, do not use the ordinal form

  • June 7; not June 7th

Range of Dates

For periods of time in years, write the numbers out with an en dash (slightly longer than a hyphen) between

  • 2004–2007 or 1995–1998
  • For academic years, the form 2013–14 is acceptable.

Range of Times

Use “from” and “to” when writing a range of times in running copy but an en dash in short notes (often at the end of a news story about an event)

  • The conference went from 9 am to noon.
  • Reception, 8–10 pm

See Punctuation for more information on en/em dashes.