How to write a meeting cancellation letter

Updated February 21, 2017

Life does not always go according to schedule. If you find you cannot host a meeting at the time and date you thought you could, sending a meeting cancellation letter is the proper etiquette. It shows you respect the time of your fellow members, and you care enough to tell them there has been a change of plan. You do not have to be self-revealing; if you want to share the reason the meeting is cancelled, you may do so. If not, that's O.K., too.

Write the letter to allow as much advance notice as possible. Unless the meeting needs to be cancelled at the last minute, compose the letter announcing the news at least a week ahead.

Head the letter formally. Include the date, name, address and official title of the recipient. Begin the letter with "Dear", and follow with the addressee's first and last name.

Get to the point immediately. Put the news about the cancelled meeting in the first sentence, including the date, time and location where it would have been held. For example, "The meeting scheduled for Friday, July 1, 2014, at 2 pm in the county library has been cancelled."

Include details regarding why the meeting was cancelled, provided the reason is appropriate for print. For example, "The club president had to attend an out-of-town funeral this weekend, and the meeting needs to be rescheduled." If the reason for cancelling the meeting is inappropriate for print, be vague. Say the meeting has been cancelled for any number of reasons, including private, technical or financial.

Express remorse and best wishes. For example, "We hope this cancellation has not caused anyone any inconvenience. Our sincerest apologies if it has."

Leave further instructions. If the meeting has been rescheduled, include the new day, date, time and location. For example, "The meeting has been rescheduled for Tuesday, July 5th, at 2pm, at the community centre." If you do not know when the next meeting will be held, say so. For example, "A new meeting has not yet been scheduled. You will be contacted with the information in a timely manner. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Sally Wheeler at ext 228."

Apologise again. For example, "Again, we apologise for any convenience this might have caused."

End the letter with a formal signature. Include your official title and contact information under your signature.

Cite this Article A tool to create a citation to reference this article Cite this Article

About the Author

Oubria Tronshaw specializes in topics related to parenting and business. She received a Bachelor of Arts in creative writing from the Santa Fe University of Art and Design, and a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing from Chicago State University. She currently teaches English at Harper Community College in the Chicago area.