There are times when a pre-printed thank you note isn't enough to express your appreciation for an act of kindness. If someone takes you out to dinner, forget the drugstore cards and write your own thank you note. Before you panic over your lack of writing skills or creativity, just remember that a written note allows you to express your gratitude with a personal touch.
Choose the paper you'd like to use for the thank you note. Though plain copy paper is fine, try to pick a basic stationary piece of paper. This gives the note a personal touch.
Decide whether you'd prefer to hand write the note or use a computer or typewriter. Handwritten notes show a greater appreciation since you're actually taking the time to write the note. Even if your handwriting is sloppy, try your best to write a legible note.
Start by addressing the person who took you out to dinner. For example, "Dear Mr. Brian Smith," or "To the Generous Ms. Doe."
Emphasise your appreciation for the dinner. You could write, "Thank you so much for taking me out to dinner on Tuesday night." Point out why you liked and appreciated the dinner, and why it was so thoughtful. For example, if the dinner was with a co-worker or boss, you could write, "Not only was the food and service spectacular, I really enjoyed being able to connect with you on a professional level over dinner." Or, if the dinner was with a close friend, you could write, "Having dinner with you really brightened my spirits."
Mention that you'd like to return the favour, and then end the note. You could write, "I would love to take you and your family out to dinner to my favourite local restaurant next week." Then, end by writing, "Best regards" or "Thanks again." Sign your name in a legible way so the note receiver knows it's from you.
Thank you notes should be short, sweet and to the point. Don't mention any unnecessary information, such as how much your kids have grown or the huge raise you got last week. The focus should be on thanking the person who took you out to dinner.