How to write the perfect English thank-you letter

In English-speaking countries, there are a number of reasons to send thank-you letters. The most common are when someone has given you a gift or invited you to their house for a party. In both situations, when you want to write a thank-you letter, there are certain things you should make sure to do. Here are five tips for making sure your next English thank-you letter is perfect.

Vary your language

‘Thank you’ is a useful expression but there are other words and phrases you can use to express your ideas more fluently. After saying ‘thank you’ you could use expressions like ‘I really appreciate…’ or ‘I was really grateful for…’ to give a more complete explanation of how much you enjoyed the gift or party.

Be specific

Even if you’ve had loads of gifts this winter and been invited to lots of events, make sure to put a specific reference to the gift the person gave you or the event that you attended in the thank-you letter. This shows that you really did pay attention and appreciate what the person did for you.

Add some detail

Don’t just tell the reader that the party was fantastic or the gift was great — explain why. Going into a bit more detail helps the reader feel good that the effort they put into the gift or party was really appreciated and that you understood why it was so special.

Add some of your own news

Friends always like to know how you are doing. After saying ‘thanks’ in the letter, add some news about you and your family to keep your friends up to date on how you are. It doesn’t need to be a detailed description of your whole year and a few sentences will be enough.

End with a positive action

Finish your letter by letting the reader know when you will be in contact. If it’s someone who lives close by, you could say ‘Let’s catch up and have a drink soon’ or if it’s someone who doesn’t live nearby, you could say ‘I hope we can meet up and have a chat next time you’re in town’. Having a clear positive action at the end of the letter gives you a reason to get in contact again and helps sustain your relationship.

So, next time you need to say ‘thank you’ in English, follow these steps to make sure your letter really impresses the reader.