Writing a thank you note to wedding guests should be the first thing you do when you get back from your destination wedding. The folks that attended the event took several days out of their lives to celebrate your event so the least you can do is spend five minutes writing out a thank you note letting them know how much you appreciated them being there.
While most brides write thank you notes after their destination wedding, many don’t do it well. Here is an example of a terrible thank you note submitted by a reader.
Thanks for attending our wedding. I had a great time and enjoyed having you with us. And thank you for the gift too. We both really loved it. Since I am not that good at writing notes, I will end it here before I write something that I won’t be able to erase and so I will have to re-write this one 🙂
Thanks for attending.
So what’s wrong with this note?
Let’s just start with how generic this note is. Right away, you know that the bride simply wrote out the same note fifty or sixty times, and sent them all without a thought. Not only is the thank you note above not memorable, they show each recipient that you did not even care to personalize them. It would be better to not send one instead.
Instead of writing a generic note over and over again, there is a proper way to write thank you notes that will truly convey your gratitude towards your wedding guests. Listed below are what is common in the best thank you notes we could find.
What are the ingredients of a great thank you note?
Good thank you notes are hand written, highly personalized and have specific qualities that you should be aware of. Here are some things to include in yours:
Thank guest for taking time out of their schedule to attend
Start the note off with a thank you. That might sound obvious to some of you reading this, but it needs to be mentioned. A “thank you for taking time out of your lives to attend our wedding” has to be said right at the beginning because it sets the right tone.
Follow that up with a memorable incident
We all want to be remembered in one way or another. Guests feel the same way when they attend your wedding. In your thank you note, try to relay an incident that was particularly memorable.
Try to use something that your wedding guest was involved in so it’s relevant to the reader of your note. Make sure the incident was either funny or thoughtful and avoid anything that was embarrassing for the guest. The last thing you want is to remind someone of something they would rather forget.
Thank them for any gift they may have brought
Regardless of how you felt about the gift, mention it in the note. Let them how you are planning on using it and how much you appreciate their thoughtfulness.
Here is a sample thank you note:
It was so exciting to us that your family was able to share this special day with us. Having you there truly made my wedding that much more special. I especially loved the prank we played on Joe and I am certain he will remember it well for the rest of our lives. Even to this day, he is conjuring up a way to get us back.
In addition, we loved the gorgeous coffee/cappuccino maker you gave. It was so thoughtful of you! In fact, we have been using it to brew our own coffee since we got back. We absolutely love the fact that we can make both cappuccinos and coffee with just one machine. Makes it so much simpler and saves counter space (you’ve seen my apartment so you know how much I value the little real estate I have!).
We had a wonderful time in Boston and hope you enjoyed it as much as we did. Once again, thank you for attending our wedding. You are a great friend in every way.
Reading the sample note above gives you the sense that there is a lot more to writing thank you notes than just a few sentences. But who has the time to write a note this detailed?
Uhh. You do.
You have the time to hand write every hand written note yourself. If guests voluntarily spent an entire weekend to attend your destination wedding, you can spend a few minutes handwriting thank you notes.
Even if you only spend one hour every day, all your notes will be done in less than a week. And finding an hour a day is not that difficult. Just watch an hour less of TV. Or, better yet, get your spouse to help write half the notes and you’ll be done in half the time.
Thanking people for coming to the wedding (and for the gift) is a great way to let them know how much you appreciated their attendance. But it isn’t the only way.
You can make a “thank you for attending” phone call instead.
When you get back from the destination wedding, rather than hand writing notes, call each guest and thank them for attending the wedding and for the gift. Let them know that you wanted to make personal calls instead of sending out thank you notes.
A great thank you note will let people know how much you appreciated them attending your destination wedding. Just make sure you follow the guidelines in this article and you will be done writing yours in no time at all.
What should you read next?
Why not take a look at some of our destination wedding planning articles.