You know that wonderful, warm-fuzzy feeling that comes over you when someone goes out of his or her way to spoil you, feed you, treat you, welcome you, bless you, support you or help you out? Of course you do. The feeling is gratitude, and it feels even better when you express it!
A handwritten card or note of thanks is one of the most heartfelt and meaningful ways to express gratitude. Maybe you can’t repay your recipient for the nice thing he or she has done, but you can reflect the thoughtfulness with the time and care you put into writing and sending a warm, gracious note.
If you need a little help getting beyond, “Thanks so much…,” you’re in the right place. Our “What to Write in a Thank-You Card” guide is full of thank-you-writing inspiration and message ideas from Hallmark writers. Whether you read the whole guide or skip to your specific thank-you situation, we hope it adds to the feel-good factor of putting your thanks in writing.
If you’ve chosen a card with a printed sentiment (more than just “Thank You”), then you don’t have to add very much. Briefly mention the specific gift or kindness you’re thanking the recipient for. Then add a warm thought like one of these…
- “You’re the best.”
- “I’m humbled and grateful.”
- “You knocked me off my feet!”
- “My heart is still smiling.”
- “Your thoughtfulness is a gift I will always treasure.”
- “Sometimes the simplest things mean the most.”
- “The banana bread was fabulous. You made my day.”
- “I’m touched beyond words.”
- “All I can say is wow! (Except, of course, I’m grateful.)”
- “My heart just keeps thanking you and thanking you.”
- “You’re a blessing to me.”
- “Thank you for being my angel.”
Writing tip: Sign and send your thank-you card while the gift or event is still fresh in your mind. Within three days is ideal, but in most situations a “thanks” will be appreciated no matter how late it arrives.
Birthday, holiday and just because
Here are some questions you could try to answer when writing a thank-you for a birthday, holiday or just-because gift: What was the gift? What do you like about it? Why was it a good choice for you? What do you plan to do with it? How did you feel when you opened it? How did it make you feel about the giver?Below are some message examples that answer one or several of those questions.
- “Thank you for the bling hanger for my marathon medals. You know me so well!”
- “I love the milk-glass vase. I’ll think of you every time I see it on my table.”
- “Thank you for the fun and funky purse. I don’t know where you find such unique things!”
- “The table runner you sent for my birthday is perfect! I can tell you spent a lot of time picking it out, and it makes me smile to think about how thoughtful you are.”
- “I was so thrilled when I opened the new hiking boots. You knew exactly what I wanted.”
- “Thank you so much for the new alarm clock. I’d been needing one, and the one you chose is perfect to use with my phone!”
- “Bless your big and generous heart!”
Writing tip: Here are a few words to describe gifts: fabulous, perfect, touching, beautiful, unique, appreciated, awesome and much-needed. Some words to describe gift givers: generous, thoughtful, creative, sweet, considerate and caring.
Graduation, wedding, baby and other life events
The challenging thing about these life-event thank-you notes is that you likely have several of them to write. It’s fine to develop a general formula for what you’ll write, but anytime the task starts to become burdensome, put down your pen and come back to it later. You want to sound appreciative and enthusiastic, and you’re more likely to come across that way if you write five thank-you cards a day over 10 days, rather than 50 all at once.
- “Wow! We are so touched by your generous wedding gift. The place settings will be used and enjoyed often—and we’ll think of you every time.”
- “Thank you for adding to the joy of our wedding with your warm wishes and thoughtful gift. We love the candlesticks and how they look on our hall table.”
- “Thank you for the adorable fire engine sleeper and bib for Ben. You put a smile in our hearts. Can’t wait to send you a picture of him wearing it!”
- “From the bottom of my heart, thank you for organizing the group gift of the car seat and stroller for my baby shower. You shouldn’t have. (But it’s so nice you did!)”
- “Thank you for the e-reader! I’m already using it and loving it. I really appreciate you thinking of me on my graduation.”
- “I so appreciate your thoughtful graduation gift to me. The watch is beautiful, and it almost makes me look like a real grown-up when I wear it 😉 Thank you so much. You’re the best!”
Writing tip: You get a little more time to write thank-you cards for graduation, wedding, shower and baby gifts. It’s still best to write and send a card as soon as possible, but for a wedding gift, you have up to three months to send it. And if you have a new baby, people will understand if it takes that long or longer.
Money and gift cards
You’re not hard to buy for—you’re easy to love because you write such a nice thank-you when someone gives you money or a gift card! Here are some ways to make a giver feel great about choosing that option for you.
- “Thank you for the generous gift card to REI! It will be such a big help in getting ready for my big camping trip. It’s much appreciated.”
- “Thank you for the birthday $5! You’d be surprised at how happy this little tradition of ours always makes me. Burger and fries, here I come!”
- “I just used the birthday money you sent toward a new power sander. I’m really excited to start using it. Thanks so much for making it happen!”
- “Just wanted to say a big THANK YOU for the coffee shop gift card. Do you know me or what?”
- “Thank you for your thoughtful and generous gift. I haven’t decided how I’ll use it yet, but I wanted you to know how happy and grateful I am.”
Writing tip: There’s no hard-and-fast rule on whether to mention the specific amount of money you were given in your thank-you message. If it feels tacky or wrong to you, then skip it. But if you feel like it highlights or helps identify the gift, it’s perfectly fine to include.
House or pet sitting, yard work or housework, help during a busy or difficult time, above-and-beyond assistance with a project at work…anytime someone steps in and makes your life a little easier, call it out with a thank-you note.
More general examples
- “This has been a challenging time, and I appreciate you so much.”
- “You have no idea how much your help has meant.”
- “For all the little and big ways you’ve pitched in…thanks!”
- “There was nothing random about your acts of kindness. Thank you for all you have done.”
- “I can never thank you enough. But this is a start.”
- “You always know how to make life brighter for everyone you know.”
- “I can’t possibly repay you.”
- “You are always so helpful.”
- “You make the world a nicer place.”
- “You went above and beyond, and I am touched and grateful.”
- “You took common courtesy to an uncommon level. We’re so grateful for your help.”
More specific examples
- “Thank you for taking care of the lawn while Kevin was in the hospital. I don’t know what I would’ve done without you.”
- “For my burden-bearing, laughter-sharing, forever-caring friend…a very happy, hug-filled, heartfelt thanks.”
- “The best way to thank you for your work on my project is to keep you informed of the outcome—and I promise to do that. Meanwhile, you have played such an important part and your help won’t be forgotten.”
- “It’s harder and harder these days to get the number of volunteers we need—but you made time in your busy schedule to step up. That means even more as every year gets busier.”
- “I’m using you as an example to my kids of someone unselfish, giving and ready with a can-do spirit. I hope they turn out just like you.”
- “Thank you for the wonderful meals you brought and arranged during Emily’s bed rest. Our hearts have been deeply touched by your kindness.”
Writing tip: If writing a thank-you takes you back to high school and turns your writing awkwardly stiff or formal, then relax and try to write like you speak. If you’re a person who would say, “Thanks so much for watching our dog!” then say, “Thanks so much for watching our dog!” Just exactly like that.
When someone opens his or her home to you for a meal, a party or an overnight stay, that definitely calls for a written thank-you.
- “A big thank-you to you both for letting me crash at your place (again) during the conference. You always make me feel just like family.”
- “Thanks for the great time…and the great memories.”
- “Thank you so much for hosting my shower. I felt like a total VIP.”
- “My heartfelt thanks to you for opening your home to me during my visit. I loved every minute of my stay.”
- “What a great party! You really know how to make good times happen. Thank you for letting me be part of it.”
- “Thank you for a lovely evening filled with laughter and good conversation. I’m still smiling.”
- “Thank you for the unforgettable meal. You’re incredible.”
- “Your home is so warm, welcoming and delightful. I felt so pampered.”
- “I didn’t want to leave. Don’t let that scare you—I promise not to show up all packed and ready to move in. It’s tempting, though.”
- “You spoiled me rotten! The delicious food. The comfy bed. The company. The fun. Thanks for everything!”
- “I felt like Goldilocks. Everything was JUST RIGHT.”
Writing tip: Thank-you advice from a longtime Hallmark writer: “I think about what has touched me in the notes I’ve received from people. I try to just let my heart speak and not worry that I’m being ‘gushy’ or ‘over the top.’ When you’re sincere, I don’t think you can be.”
It’s good business to send a handwritten thank-you note for the courtesy of an interview, for referrals or opportunities, for above-and-beyond work done for you, for mentoring and many other professional situations. After an interview, a gracious thank-you card can distinguish one candidate from another. More generally, it makes the sender memorable, leaving a positive impression and paving the way for a lasting business relationship.
- “Thank you so much for inviting me to interview for your open account specialist position. I truly appreciate the time you took to talk with me about this opportunity and the company. I enjoyed learning more about your work group and how I might fit into that team. Please don’t hesitate to contact me with any follow-up questions you might have. I hope to talk with you again soon.”
- “Thank you for your invaluable mentoring these past three months. I’ve had fun getting to know you better, and I’ve learned so much from talking with you and seeing how you work. You are amazing at what you do! I’m grateful to have had the chance to work with you so closely.”
- “I can’t thank you enough for advising me to send my résumé to your colleague Dana Evans. I now have an interview scheduled with her next week to discuss some freelance work, and I’m really excited about the assignment she’s describing. It was very kind of you to refer me to her. I hope I can find a way to return the favor soon!”
Writing tip: In business communication, it’s all about relationships—establishing them, keeping them strong and making them work for you. Sending a written thank-you is a standout way to do all those things!
- With love,
- Lots of love,
- Love always,
- Much love to you,
- Love and thanks,
- Warmest thanks,
- Beyond grateful,
- Feeling spoiled,
- With gratitude,
- God bless,
- God bless you,
- God bless you now and always,