8 Formal Ways to Say “And/Or”

Are you looking for a more suitable formal alternative to “and/or”?

Perhaps you’re worried that the slash in the phrase is unprofessional. Or maybe you simply think it doesn’t fit your formal writing.

Whatever the case, we’re here to help.

This article will explain how to say “and/or” formally.

Can “And/Or” Be Used in Formal Writing?

You can’t use “and/or” in formal writing. The slash is not correct in formal writing, which means it’s not something you should include in essays, newspapers, or other formal outlets.

Technically, the word is grammatically correct.

It shows that you can choose one of two options or both if that’s more relevant.

It can’t be used professionally, as APA Style discourages the use of and/or. After all, it won’t add much to your writing that other more formal phrases can’t.

Still, you can review this example to learn more:

It can come in black and/or gold. It’s up to you to decide.


  • It’s a good way to give people as many options as possible.
  • It’s quite effective at getting a lot of information out quickly with only a few words.


  • It’s unprofessional.
  • Most style guides discourage its use.

So, it might not be wise to use “and/or” in your writing. Still, that doesn’t mean you can’t explore some alternatives that do the same job and make your writing more formal.

Keep reading to learn how to say “and/or” in an email or other professional situation. We’ve gathered a helpful list of alternatives to show you what might work.

What to Say Instead of “And/Or”

  • As well as
  • Either … or both
  • In addition to
  • Both
  • Or
  • In conjunction with
  • One of … or both
  • And

1. As Well As

One of the best ways to replace “and/or” in professional writing is “as well as.”

This works really well in most academic writing cases.

After all, it shows that you can choose from one of two different options.

Generally speaking, you don’t need to include both “and” and “or” when showing that the reader can choose one or two things.

Instead, “as well as” shows that it’s up to the reader to decide which works best for them. So, you can use this in an essay if you’re wondering what to say instead of “and/or” that works professionally.

Check out these essay samples if you still don’t understand how to use it:

You can choose option one as well as option two. Of course, you can choose both if that’s more suitable for you.

It’s clear that they wanted to decide between figure three as well as figure five. Nobody could decide which was more potent, though.

2. Either … or Both

Next, you can include “either … or both” in a paper. This works well when you want to use “and/or” without the slash.

After all, instead of the slash, we’ve included space for you to write other words. Sure, it makes your writing wordier, but it also makes it more professional and streamlined.

For example:

  • You can choose either white or black or both.

As you can see, something should come between “either” and “or both.” This will allow the reader to see that they have two options.

From there, the reader can decide whether they want to use one or the other or both, if that’s more suited to what they need.

Overall, the phrase makes a lot of sense. When you include something after “either,” it’s clear and direct, making it a great option to include.

Feel free to review these examples if you still need help with it:

It’s worth picking either one or three, or both. However, this is entirely up to the person drafting the response.

I looked into either time or temperature or both, depending on which was going to be most beneficial for each experiment.

3. In Addition To

Next, we recommend using “in addition to.” This is a professional way to say “and/or” that removes the need for the slash.

This time, we recommend writing it in a formal email. You can include it in business deals when discussing options that might appeal to the recipient.

For the most part, this works when contacting a client.

It gives them a better way to understand what you’re offering to them. From there, they can decide whether you’re providing them with quality information or if they’d rather go elsewhere.

You may also review this email sample to learn a bit more about it:

Dear Ms. Dean,

You can take the profits in addition to the projected earnings.

If it suits you, it might be worth taking both into account before moving forward.

Kind regards,
Jonathan Bennett

4. Both

Next, you can simplify things by using one word. And that one word is “both.”

“Both” is an inclusive word. It gives people two options to choose from, and it also often suggests they can choose both options.

Therefore, you can use something like this in legal writing. It’s a simplified and straightforward way to use “and/or” that removes the need to include the slash.

Most readers will prefer how streamlined this word choice is.

It also helps that it keeps things more professional when used in this way.

You may want to review these examples to learn a bit more about it:

We could look into both instances to figure out which is the most important factor here. It’s up to the jury.

It’s clear that both options were included, but the agency lies with the affected party to determine what they investigate.

5. Or

Are you still confused about how to use “and/or” professionally? It can be tricky, but it doesn’t have to be!

That’s where “or” comes in.

Have you noticed how simple this synonym is? After all, we’ve removed “and” and the slash from the term.

Leaving “or” on its own gives you, as the writer, more options.

After all, “or” can be an inclusive or exclusive word.

But what does that mean?

Well, an inclusive “or” means you can choose one of two options, or both, if that’s better for you.

For example:

  • You can choose either option or both.

However, an exclusive “or” means you’re given two options, but you must choose between them.

For instance:

  • You can choose one or the other.

Since “or” is replacing “and/or” here, we recommend sticking to the inclusive sense of the word! This allows it to be more versatile and direct.

So, here are some examples showing you how to use “or” in more professional settings:

You can pick that one or this one. It’s up to you, and you may also choose them both if that’s more realistic.

They could choose between black or white. However, it’s possible that both options can be picked.

6. In Conjunction With

We want to return to an email context for a second. After all, this next synonym works really well in most formal email situations.

You can use “in conjunction with” as a formal way to say “and/or.”

It’s an excellent choice that keeps things professional and sincere.

So, you can use it when contacting an employee to give them an idea of some choices they might have to make moving forward.

Also, it’s worth reviewing the following email sample to find out how it works:

Dear Barry,

You can refer to this in conjunction with the previous information I sent.

However, it’s up to you to decide whether you’d like both pieces of information or only one.

All the best,
Rita Vaseline

7. One Of … or Both

You may also want to write “one of … or both.” Again, we’re using the ellipsis here to highlight that something should come after “one of.”

For instance:

  • One of this or that or both.

As you can see, “one of” is another way to say “either” that gives the reader an option between two things.

So, you can use something like this as a more professional and unique way to highlight that the reader has a choice.

Feel free to review these examples if you need a bit more help with it:

You can choose one of the following or both. However, your decision will be very important for what’s to come.

It’s clear that the choice lies between one of the two variables or both. I’m still trying to figure it out.

8. And

Finally, we recommend using “and” instead of “and/or.” Yes, it’s another useful synonym that helps to streamline your writing by removing one of the two words in “and/or.”

This time, we’re removing “or.”

You can use “and” on its own when giving someone two things to choose from.

It suggests that they can choose from two options, and it’s up to them to decide if they’re both good choices or if only one is relevant.

It works well in an essay. Also, it helps that it’s one of the most common words in English. So, it’s clearly quite a versatile choice!

Here are some essay samples to help you with it:

I had to choose between money and time, but I had the option to choose both if I played my cards right.

It’s clear that there were pictures and videos to choose from. However, I had to make the distinction clear.