Apologize For Missing an Event or For Overlooking or Forgetting Someone • Example Letters, Plus Guides and Samples
Write this brief letter as soon as possible after the incident. Focus your comments on what you are doing to rectify the situation rather than on the damage you may have caused. A sincere, well-worded apology coupled with action can go a long way toward patching up a damaged relationship.
How to write this apology letter:
- Begin with a straightforward apology.
- Mention any action taken to remedy the situation. You may wish to explain, but do not excuse, your offense. End with a positive statement.
Example Letter #1
I feel terrible about not mentioning the contribution your group made to our fall festival last month. In my attempt to single out the newcomers for some recognition, I simply overlooked the chorus.
Your group has always been such a major part of the event that I guess I have almost taken them for granted. I apologize. Please forgive me and accept my sincere thanks for all you and they have done to make our festival so successful.
I plan to mention your continuing contribution in our next monthly newsletter. Please accept my personal thanks and apology.
Example Letter #2
I am sorry that I was unable to attend your retirement open house, but I was at the hospital greeting our new arrival.
I wanted to tell you how much I appreciate the help you have given me over the past fifteen years. You have been a wonderful mentor, and I hope I can be as caring and helpful to others as you have been to me.
My best wishes to you in your retirement.
Example Letter #3
I am so sorry we overlooked you on our guest list. Of course we were looking forward to seeing you at the wedding, and were very upset when we realized we had forgotten to invite you. Allow us to assure you that this was a simple oversight, and that if we could turn back time, you would be the first to receive an invitation. We will be sending you a copy of the professional videotape we had taken at the wedding. We look forward to seeing you soon after the honeymoon.
Example Letter #4
Please accept my sincere regrets for being unable to attend your daughter's wedding last weekend. Due to a family emergency I had to go out of town suddenly and was unable to let you know in advance that I would not be able to come. I am sure it was a lovely occasion and I am very sorry to have missed it. Please convey my disappointment to Jane, and wish her and John much happiness in the years to come.
Write Your Letter Step-by-Step
1 Begin with a straightforward apology.
Sample Sentences for Step 1
- I am so sorry I missed your high school play. I was very much looking forward to it, and I was extremely disappointed when I could not come.
- I am sorry I didn't get time to chat with you at John's reception.
- I hear we missed out on a great event. I am so sorry that we were not able to attend your birthday party.
- It looks like I made the blunder of the year. I am sorry that I forgot to mention your important contribution to the Doe project at the awards banquet.
- I am sorry that I forgot to send you a birthday card.
- I am sorry that we forgot to send you an invitation. It was just an unfortunate oversight.
- Jane, I am sorry that this thank you note is overdue, but I want to express my appreciation for your help with the arrangements for the family reunion.
Sample Phrases for Step 1
- can't believe that we missed
- does not adequately express
- embarrassed that I forgot
- how could I have possibly
- how could I have forgotten
- just an unfortunate oversight
- my dismay when I realized that I had overlooked
- so sorry that I didn't realize that yesterday was
- so involved that
- so sorry that we were not able to attend
- sorry that we forgot to send
- sorry that I forgot to mention your
- sorry that this thank you note is so late
- sorry I didn't have time to
- sorry I missed your
- sorry that I forgot to send you a
- what can I say other than
- what could I have been thinking
- what was on my mind that day
2 Mention any action taken to remedy the situation. You may wish to explain, but do not excuse, your offense. End with a positive statement.
Sample Sentences for Step 2
- When I get off work Saturday let's order a pizza and watch the video of your performance. The worst part of my job is occasionally missing important events like this one. Thanks for being patient with your dad.
- As I nervously read the script for the presentation, I missed some names--including yours. Your skill and expertise were invaluable to the project, and you deserve great credit. I am very sorry for my mistake.
- My wife and I had conflicting engagements. Otherwise, we both would have enjoyed helping you celebrate. I hope you had a happy birthday. We wish you all the best.
- This card is a little late, but it is sent with love and thankfulness for your friendship. I hope you had a wonderful birthday.
- Our party was just not complete without you and John! I wish we would have found out sooner that you didn't get the invitation. I had checked you off on my list of invitations sent out. I thought I had sent you an invitation!
- Our party just would not be complete without you and John! I hope you haven't made other plans for Saturday.
- Since I knew I was going to be in town for only a short time, I wanted to be sure to talk with you. I couldn't get away from a previous engagement, so I only had time to make a quick appearance at the reception before catching my plane. That's why I was so rushed. I was disappointed that we had so little time. When I come back we will spend the day together.
Sample Phrases for Step 2
- after work, let's go out for
- appreciate the work you do at
- are you free for lunch on
- glad to count you as a good friend
- glad to have you with us
- have reservations for this weekend at the
- hope there will be no conflict
- hope to have you with us for many more years
- hope you had a wonderful birthday
- hope you haven't made plans for
- it is sent with love and thankfulness for your
- just would not be complete without
- just you and me
- look forward to seeing you soon
- must let me make it up to you
- our party was just not complete without
- please accept our belated good wishes
- sincere thanks for a super job
- the whole weekend to ourselves
- this card is a little late
- when I come back we will spend the day together
- will recognize you in a special section of
- will call you to confirm a time
- will definitely include you in the next
- wish you all the best