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How You Should Be Flying US Flags

How You Should Be Flying US Flags

A Guideline to Flag Flying

Why should we treat the American flag with so much respect? The U.S. flag is a symbol of our country’s patriotism and a reminder of the men and women who fought and died to protect our country and our freedom. Correctly flying the American flag is a great way to show respect and support to our country, and those who fought for it. Are you doing it the right way?


  • The flag should be hoisted briskly and lowered ceremoniously.
  • The flag is never permitted to touch the ground or the floor.
  • Whenever hung over a pavement on a rope advancing from a building to a pole the institute stars are always away from the building.
  • Once vertically hung over the center of a road, the flag always has the union stars to the north within an east/west street, and the east in a north/south street.
  • The flag of the United States should be at the center and the highest point of the group when multiple flags of the states, localities, military, etc. are grouped and displayed on the same flagpole.
  • The flag should never be festooned, driven back, nor up. Inside the fold but always permitted to fall free.
  • Under no circumstances should you fly the flag the other way up except as a transmission of distress in circumstances of extreme danger to life or property.


  • When over a speaker’s podium, the banner should be either above and behind the audio, or to the speaker’s right as he looks the audience.
  • When shown either horizontally or top to bottom against a wall, the union (blue field) should be uppermost and the flag’s right, that is, the observer’s left.
  • In a window, or hanging above a corridor, the flag should hang with the union on the viewer’s left.


  • The flag should be held to the marcher’s right side during a parade (observers left).
  • If there is a line of flags, the U.S. flag should appear in front of the center of the line.
  • If the U.S. flag is grouped together with other flags, it should appear furthest to the right side (observers left).
  • All nearby military members (in uniform or not in uniform) should perform the military salute to the flag.
    • All other people should give the flag their undivided attention by removing their hats and placing their right hand over their heart – similar to National Anthem etiquette.
  • The flag should not be draped over a car, train, or motorboat. When displayed with a car, the flag’s personnel should be attached to the right fender or the chassis.
  • The U.S. flag should be held straight and should not be dipped to any person or thing. Regimental, express, or organizational flags may be dipped.

Keep in mind that there are also parade podium flag sets that are used to properly display a flag when the parade is finished.