Cancel a Reservation • Example Letters and Guides
Keep in mind that the other party has counted on your participation, so your cancellation will be at least an inconvenience, if not an expense. In this case, offering a reasonable explanation is a courtesy.
How to write this cancellation letter:
- State that you must cancel your reservation and give a reasonable explanation.
- Comment on any actions to be taken as a result of the cancellation.
- End on a positive note.
Example Letter #1
Budgetary constraints dictate that we cancel our reservations for the July conference this year. We trust that the proceedings will be published and that we can purchase a copy. Please reimburse me the registration fee, minus the cost of the printed proceedings, which I trust you will send me in the fall.
We appreciate your efforts in organizing the annual conference and look forward to attending next year.
Example Letter #2
I regret having to cancel my reservation for the weekend of February 12 and 13. Complications at work have forced me to put my personal plans on hold for a short time. Since I plan to make another reservation soon, I hope that you will apply the fee that I paid toward that new one.
Thank you for your kind service and your accommodation.
Example Letter #3
Regrettably, I must cancel my reservation for the orientation seminar on March 21. I will still be on the airplane when the meeting begins at 2:00 p.m. I hope to attend the meeting on March 24 if there is an open chair. In any case I look forward to meeting you and the rest of my new "crew."
Example Letter #4
My company scheduled the Lincoln room at your hotel for a banquet on May 5. I apologize, but I must cancel the arrangements. This morning's headlines tell the reason: Doe International just bought us. Please refund my $500 deposit and accept my sincere regrets. Maybe we can try again once the dust settles.
Write Your Letter Step-by-Step
1 State that you must cancel your reservation and give a reasonable explanation.
Sentences for Step 1
- I regret having to cancel my travel reservations for March 17 to March 30. My company is reevaluating the budget, and all travel privileges have been suspended until further notice.
- My organization was planning to use your banquet hall for its awards dinner on Thursday, June 11. We have just been informed, however, that because of financial considerations, we will not be able to hold the event. Regretfully, we must cancel our reservation.
- My wife and I have reservations at your hotel for the night of August 21, but because of a change in our schedule we will not be able to keep our reservation.
- Because my husband was recently involved in a serious automobile accident, we must cancel our reservations for the St. Thomas cruise departing June 12.
- Because of business commitments, I regret that I will be unable to attend your daughter's wedding on June 15.
Phrases for Step 1
- because of a change in our schedule
- confirm that we have had to cancel
- because of financial considerations
- due to business commitments
- due to my spouse's sudden illness
- due to financial difficulties
- has been postponed indefinitely
- must cancel our reservations
- not be able to keep our reservation
- our plans have been put on hold
- our situation has changed and
- our plans have had to change and
- please cancel our reservation for
- postponing the conference until
- reevaluating the budget
- regret that we must cancel our
- regret that I will be unable to
- request that you cancel our
- serious automobile accident
- sorry to have to cancel
- travel privileges have been suspended
- written confirmation of my phone call
2 Comment on any actions to be taken as a result of the cancellation.
Sentences for Step 2
- My wife is still planning to attend the wedding, so please change our family's reservations from two to one.
- According to my records, I have paid $200 beyond my deposit. Please check your records and reimburse me that amount.
- Would you please credit my account for the amount of the tickets?
- Since I am canceling before the posted deadline, I would appreciate a full refund of my preregistration fee.
- Since my cancellation is late, I understand that my refund will be reduced by $10.
Phrases for Step 2
- according to my records
- apply deposit to a later date
- appreciate it if you would reimburse
- appreciate a refund of my fee
- because this is due to a medical emergency
- before the posted deadline
- early enough to merit a refund
- expect no refund
- had not yet picked up the tickets
- had not yet paid the fee
- have made payments beyond the deposit
- less the processing fee
- less the late cancellation fee
- my records show that
- please credit my account
- please return the amount that exceeds the deposit
- refund my deposit
- return those payments that were beyond the deposit
- the size of the group has been reduced to
- tickets are enclosed
- understand that the deposit is transferable
- understand that the deposit is not refundable
- understand that our deposit is partly refundable
3 End on a positive note.
Sentences for Step 3
- Thank you for all the trouble you went through to make the arrangements. Next time we travel, we will certainly keep your agency in mind.
- Again, I am very sorry for any inconvenience I may have caused. If you have any questions, please feel free to call me.
- Please give your son my best and tell him I am very sorry that my family cannot be at his graduation.
- You have been very helpful. When we do plan our cruise, we will think of you first.
- We appreciate your willingness to work with us. The next time we need accommodations, we will definitely consider your hotel.
Phrases for Step 3
- appreciate the effort you put into our
- are very disappointed that we cannot
- had looked forward to this
- have always enjoyed your
- have appreciated your professional approach to
- have been very impressed by your
- hope to reschedule the
- hope to proceed with our plans in the future
- please feel free to call if necessary
- regret the inconvenience
- relieved to know that you have a waiting list
- sorry for any inconvenience
- thank you for all your trouble
- trust that this is only a postponement
- trust that we will be able to reschedule
- will recommend your service to
- will think of you first
- working with you has been a pleasure
- you have been very helpful
- your willingness to work with us
- your staff has been