If you're using the Verdana typeface in your printed documents, stop now.

There is no need and it is helping destroy the planet.

Verdana takes up about 19% more horizontal space than Arial. So a switch away from Verdana could reduce your paper costs by up to 19%. For further savings, switch to duplex printing at the same time.

If you need a font designed for readability, try the granddaddy of readable fonts - Helvetica - or at a pinch Arial.
Back in the olden days of the interweb, we didn't have nice big screens with fantastical resolutions. We didn't have nicely anti-aliased, easily readable text. To fit enough information on a small screen, the fonts used were blocky and tiny. At small font sizes, text displayed in Arial typeface would huddle together and become difficult to read. Not Verdana, with it's "generous width and spacing". It was open and easy to read. Soon everyone wanted a bit of the action. All the sans-serif web pages started using Verdana it spread like a virus.

Roll forward to the present and it seems that 1200 pixels is now the minimum screen width that people have. With larger screens, the font can be larger and so easier to read. We no longer need such generosity in our width and spacing. A return to classic typography is due.


To make a difference, check through the list below and help eradicate Verdana font from the planet.

  1. Do not use Verdana in your web pages

    • Simply don't use it. Replace it with Helvetica or it's bastard offspring Arial
    • Educate your clients why its bad
    • Change corporate identity guidelines. If you really, really, really, really have to use it on a website, have a print stylesheet which uses something else more elegant

      Here's how to add a separate print stylesheet:

      			<link rel="stylesheet" href="/print.css" type="text/css" media="print"  />

      Here's the basic content for print.css:

      			body { font-family: helvetica, arial, sans-serif; }

      Helvetica before Arial please. That's the correct order.
  2. Do not use Verdana in reports, presentations etc

    Verdana was designed as a screen font for small displays. It just doesn't look good in printed material or displayed big on projectors.

  3. Remove it from your computer

    • Remove it from your computer
    • Remove it from all computers in your organisation
    • Make sure that your base install image for new PCs in your organisation does not have the Verdana font included.

Further Reading