punctuate sentences ending with period

When it comes to punctuation, periods are one of the easier ones to use. But what happens when you have a sentence like this: “We’re going to leave for the airport at 6:30 a.m.”? How do you punctuate it? Do you add an extra period to the end of the sentence? Or does the second period in “a.m.” do the trick? In this post, we’ll talk about how to punctuate sentences that already end with a period.

What are your options?

So how do you punctuate sentences that already end with a period? Let’s start by returning to our example sentence, the one about heading to the airport:

  • “We’re going to leave for the airport at 6:30 a.m.”

Now let’s think about what your options are here. You’ve got two of them: Option 1 is to add a period to the end of the sentence. Option 2 is to let the final period in “a.m.” serve as the period that closes the sentence. Here’s what these options look like in action:

  • “We’re going to leave for the airport at 6:30 a.m..” (Option 1)
  • “We’re going to leave for the airport at 6:30 a.m.” (Option 2)

Which one is the correct option?

If you had to guess which option is correct, which one would you choose?

Did you chose Option 2? If so, you’re right!

When you already have a period at the end of a sentence, don’t add an extra period at the end. Just like when the word or phrase at the end of a sentence contains a question mark or exclamation point, leave out the final period. Want to see more examples of period collision in action? Here you go:

  • “Karen applied for a job at Mighty Media, Inc..” (Incorrect)
    “Karen applied for a job at Mighty Media, Inc.” (Correct)
  • “Their new house is on Chestnut Dr..” (Incorrect)
    “Their new house is on Chestnut Dr.” (Correct)
  • “The European retail chain just opened its first store in the U.S..” (Incorrect)
    “The European retail chain just opened its first store in the U.S.” (Correct)

It isn’t hard to remember how to punctuate sentences that end with a period

Punctuating sentences that already end with a period may feel weird. After all, we’re so used to closing off sentences with that final, satisfying period. But at least it isn’t hard to remember what to do. If your sentence ends with an abbreviation or phrase that ends with a period, leave that final period out.


How would you punctuate this sentence: “Michelle works at Yahoo!”? (Remember that the “!” is part of the brand’s name). We explain it all in this post on how to punctuate sentences that already end in question marks or exclamation points.





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How to punctuate sentences that already end with a period
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