Etiquette for Sending Thank You Cards

by Henry L. on July 6, 2009

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Throughout the years I have found it very rewarding, and still is, to send and receive words of appreciation and/or gratitude in thank you cards. I have often been asked when it is appropriate to send thank you cards and would like to share the following suggestions with you.

A thank you card is an expression of appreciation for a thoughtful act, gift or gesture and should be sent as quickly as possible, generally within a week of receipt of a gift or gesture. In the case of a gift, always make a specific reference to the gift received, such as, “Thank you so much for the blue sweater. How did you know blue was my favorite color?”

A thank you card is appropriate in the following situations:

• After being hosted as a house guest
• After receiving gifts/visits during a hospital stay
• Gifts that were received by mail
• Wedding gifts
• Baby shower gifts
• After receiving sympathy letters, flowers or mass cards
• Notes or gifts of congratulations
• Having been given a party in your honor
• Having accomplished a commendable task
• Having received a job referral
• Volunteered services
• That special teacher
• A helpful co-worker

Select thank you cards that reflect your personality and keep a supply on hand. It is important to personalize your thank you cards with a hand written message.

If you receive a gift you dislike you should still show appreciation for the thought that went into selecting it for you. You might say, “Thank you for the gift. I will always think of you whenever I use/wear it.”

I’m hoping this has been helpful to those of you who care enough to send thank you cards.

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