Kindle logo on the front of the 2015 Amazon Kindle Paperwhite eReader
Justin Duino / How-To Geek
Every registered Kindle has a free unique email address you can use to deliver common eBook and document formats wirelessly to your Kindle.

Have a book from outside the Amazon ecosystem and want to read it on your Kindle? Forget sideloading with an app or tethering with a USB cable. You can just email it right to your Kindle.

Why Do I Want to Email Files to My Kindle?

Whether you’ve recently carefully shopped for the right Kindle model for your needs or you’re trying to get more use out of your older Kindle, you likely want to fill it up with interesting stuff to read.

The most common way to get a book or other document onto your Kindle, such as a digital copy of a magazine, is simply purchasing it through the Kindle store and having it automatically delivered to your Kindle.

That’s great if that’s the method by which you acquired the book, magazine, or document in question, but what if it is from outside the Kindle store? There are other ways to transfer files to your Kindle, like sideloading them with the Send to Kindle app or using the popular eBook management program Calibre to transfer them.

I’m a long-time Calibre user and can’t say enough good things about it, but unless you’re managing an extensive eBook collection, the app can feel like a wee bit of overkill for just firing some books or documents over to your Kindle. It’s a great app for power users, and people who want tricks like turning their favorite internet news feeds into Kindle-friendly magazines, but not everybody needs all that.

Even downloading and installing the Send to Kindle app might seem like a bit much for a one-off file here or there. Thankfully there’s a really simple method that requires no installation of anything and works from practically anywhere. Email.

Emailing a book or document to your Kindle is one of many really handy but underused Amazon Kindle features. In the early days of the Kindle, it was the only network-based sideloading method available (as the Send to Kindle app wasn’t released yet). It’s also the secret ingredient that allows popular read-it-later services like Pocket and Instapaper to send articles and digests to your Kindle.

Despite the old-school vibe, it’s still a fantastic way to get a book or document to your Kindle with minimal fuss. Once you set it up, it’s so trivial to use that you might have a shot at filling your Kindle up to the point that you have to do a little housekeeping.

And the best part about it, you can use the trick along with all the other methods like the Send-to-Kindle app and Calibre. So for those times you’re away from your favorite app, you can just fire off an email.

How Do I Email Books to My Kindle?

Emailing a book or document to your Kindle is straightforward as long as you do a little bit of homework first and follow some basic guidelines. Once you set things up, you’ll be set and won’t have to fuss with it again.

Locate Your Unique Kindle Email Address

Every registered Kindle has a special email address. Even if you’ve never used yours before (or had no idea such an address existed before reading this article), there’s still an automatically generated one waiting for your use. Just log into your Amazon account and navigate Select your Kindle there to get additional information about it, including the unique email address.

You can also find Kindle’s email address in the  Amazon mobile app by tapping the menu button and, from the shortcuts drawer, clicking on the “Account” icon. In the Account section, navigate to Account Settings > Manage Content and Devices > Devices, and select your Kindle for the same information.

The default Kindle email address format is, using the first and last name of the account holder and a two-digit identifier in the XX section of the address.

Add Your Email Address to the Allowed List

Email is, unfortunately, nearly synonymous with spam. Getting spam content automatically delivered to your Kindle would be infuriating, to say the least. Thankfully, there is a mechanism in place to prevent it.

Your Kindle email address will only accept emailed files from your manually authorized email addresses. You can find this list, called the “Approved Personal Document E-mail List” under the “Preferences” tab for your devices when logged into your Amazon account. On mobile it’s located in the same place as the general Devices section we highlighted in the previous section.

There, you need to add the email address you will be using to send the documents to your Kindle. For most people, this will be their primary personal address. For people using a third-party eBook manager like Calibre-web with a free email address set up specifically for the purpose, or configuring their Kindle to accept digest emails from read-it-later services, enter that email address instead.

Send Compatible Files to Your Kindle Email Address

With that basic housekeeping out the way—checking your Kindle’s unique address and authorizing the address you want to send the files from—all that is left to do is send some files.

First,  you need a supported file type. The Kindle email service supports the following format types:

  • eBooks: EPUB, PDF
  • Documents: RTF, DOC, DOCX
  • Web Pages: HTML, HTM
  • Images: JPG, JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMP

If you’re familiar with the Kindle ecosystem, you might have noticed that MOBI and AZW files—two formats long used by Kindle eBook readers—are missing. Ironically, you can’t send either to the Kindle email service, but when you do send any non-PDF book or document file to your address, it will be converted to an AZW file before it is sent to your Kindle. Go figure.

Oh, and if you’re surprised to see that the Kindle Personal Documents emails service supports EPUB files (after not doing so for over a decade), it’s part of Amazon’s partial adoption of the format in 2022.

You can send up to 25 documents to your Kindle email address in a single email. The total size of the email attachments, regardless of the number of attachments, cannot exceed 50MB. The service supports ZIP files, so you may zip multiple documents together to get below the 50MB threshold (although you are still limited to 25 in a single email).

There is no requirement for anything special in the subject line or body of the email, so when firing off documents to your Kindle you just need your address and the files.

And that’s it! Found an interesting PDF online you want to read on your Kindle, but you’re currently looking at it on your phone? No problem, attach the PDF to an email using your phone’s email client, fire it off to your Kindle address, and it will be automatically delivered to your Kindle. Same thing if you’re on your PC. Downloaded free ebooks from Project Gutenburg or bought some DRM-free books from Humble Bundle? Same thing, just toss them in an email and send away.

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Profile Photo for Jason Fitzpatrick Jason Fitzpatrick
Jason Fitzpatrick is the Senior Smart Home Editor at How-To Geek. He has over a decade of experience in publishing and has authored thousands of articles at How-To Geek, Review Geek, LifeSavvy, and Lifehacker. Jason served as Lifehacker's Weekend Editor before he joined How-To Geek.
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