Thanking the Thanksgiving Day Host with a Thank You Note

In the United States, Thanksgiving Day was celebrated by most Americans last week. Most people celebrate by gathering together with friends and family and having a Thanksgiving Day meal (aka feast).

I celebrated with my family for lunch and then with my in-laws for dinner on Thanksgiving day. Other families may have their meal on Friday (if not shopping!), Saturday or Sunday.

If you went to someone else’s home (even if it was your parents) I recommend sending the host a thank-you note to show your gratitude.

Here are some reasons to thank the Thanksgiving host family:

* The host family may have made all of the food like my mom did (thanks, mom!). Feeding 10, 20, or more is not free! Preparing that much food also takes many hours. Also, preparing several dishes and having them all ready at the same time is not as easy as it seems. Crock pots can help with this!

* They will (hopefully) have cleaned their house.

* There will be clean up! Some people may appreciate if you offer to help with clean up with dishes, while others prefer to do it themselves.

* Someone may be missing the football game they wanted to watch to have you at their house.

* They invited you into their home.

* They may have had to make special arrangements for their pets. If they have big dogs, perhaps they had to board them in a kennel. If you are allergic to cats, perhaps they kept their cats sequestered.

* They may have made your favorite Thanksgiving dish that they do not like themselves. I have a hard time making food that I do not like!

* You were able to see other members of your extended family.

* They made you a turkey (or other Thanksgiving favorites)!

To thank someone for bringing pie, cake, or cookies, review the examples here.

Your thank you note will show the host family that their efforts are appreciated.


1. Remember the best thank you note tip is to name something specific in your note that you appreciated.

2. Thanksgiving is an occasion worthy of a three or four-sentence thank you note, but one sentence is better than not thanking them at all.

3. If you will see them at Christmas or other December holidays, you can mention that you are looking forward to seeing them then.

4. If you hated a dish don’t mention that one. Pick a dish that you enjoyed to compliment. Or compliment the house in some way.

Thanksgiving Thank You Note Message Template:

Dear [insert host name],

Thank you for having me [use us if someone in your immediate family also went] over for Thanksgiving. [insert reason 1 for being thankful]. [insert reason 2 or a compliment]. I look forward to seeing you again in December.

Thanks Again!
[Your Name]

Thanksgiving Thank You Note Examples:

Dear Mom,

Thank you for having us over for Thanksgiving and for preparing all of the food. My favorite dish was the corn casserole. We also enjoyed spending time with you and the family.


More examples – only the center section of the note:

#1 We had a wonderful time at your house for Thanksgiving dinner. Thank you for hosting again this year. Your mashed potatoes are the best! And my kids enjoy playing with their cousins.

#2 Thank you for including me in your family’s Thanksgiving celebration. I am happy to have friends to share holidays with when I am not able to travel home. Your decorations were perfect for Thanksgiving, especially that unique orange leaf print tablecloth. I had a lovely day.

#3 We are grateful that you and your family were able to host Thanksgiving this year. We will plan for Christmas at our house. Your house felt very cozy, and the deep-fried turkey was a treat! We appreciate all the effort to get your house ready and make all the food!

#4 Thanks for hosting Thanksgiving. We had a great time visiting with the family and playing Scrabble. The guys were also happy to watch some of the football games since we canceled cable at home.

#5 My family had an enjoyable Thanksgiving at your house. Bob appreciated that you were able to keep your cat in your bedroom since he is allergic to cats. He made it through the day without needing a Benedryl. The pumpkin pie made from fresh pumpkin was the best pumpkin pie I ever had!

I hope you had a great Thanksgiving! Aim to send a thank you note to the host within a week of your gathering. If you were the host, Thank You!

You may also like:

About The Author
Heidi has been writing thank you notes for more thank 30 years and is the author of A Modern Guide to Writing Thank-You Notes. Her goal is to help people write better thank-you notes by provding tips and examples.

2 thoughts on “Thanking the Thanksgiving Day Host with a Thank You Note”

  1. Thanks Heidi. Bet all moms wish their kids were thankful like you are.
    I like cooking so we had many options and will do it as long as I am able.
    The corn casserole is always a hit so I made 2 of those and only one green bean casserole.
    In a different light, some parents may be thankful that one of the children has taken over the feast.

    • I don’t think I can take over with the cats and a smaller house! Maybe one of my siblings will some year :)

      Thanks again for a great meal! My thank you note is being mailed tomorrow.

Comments are closed.