The Art of Writing Thank-You Notes for Dinner and Hospitality (Food, Friends, Catering, AirBNB)

By Billie •  Updated: 04/06/13 •  5 min read

5 Tips on What to Say in a Thank You Note for Dinner

We'd love to have you over for dinner and then wait impatiently for you to leave.

Here are thank you note message examples for hospitality shown by an AirBNB host, by friends who had you over for dinner, and for kindness shown to you while visiting your friends or a host.

Some possibilities of what to include in a thank you note for dinner:

  1. Express your appreciation: Let the host know how much you enjoyed the meal and their hospitality. A simple phrase like “Thank you so much for the delicious dinner” can go a long way.
  2. Mention a specific dish or detail: If there was a particular dish or aspect of the meal that stood out to you, consider mentioning it in your thank you note. This can be a way to show your appreciation and give the host specific feedback.
  3. Offer thanks for the host’s effort: A thank you note is a chance to acknowledge the time and effort that the host put into preparing the meal. Let them know that you appreciate their hard work.
  4. Share a memorable moment or conversation: If you had a particularly enjoyable conversation or moment during the meal, consider sharing it in your thank you note. This can be a way to personalize the message and show your appreciation.
  5. Keep it sincere: Above all, a thank you note should be sincere and heartfelt. Let the host know how much you enjoyed the meal and their company.

A Short Thank You Note Template for Dinner and Hospitality

Dear [Name],
Thank you so much for the delicious dinner and warm hospitality. Your cooking skills are second to none, and I thoroughly enjoyed every bite.
I am so grateful for your generosity and kindness in inviting me over and making me feel welcome. Your friendship means so much to me, and I am so lucky to have such wonderful people in my life.
Thank you again for the tasty meal and for your ongoing support and love.
[Your Name]

Quick Starters

What’s Hospitality Got to Do With It?

What do we consider hospitality? Let’s define hospitality as the welcoming and kind treatment you received from a friend or family member while at their house. Let’s extend that definition to include hospitality shown by an AirBNB host, as home-sharing grows in popularity.

If you crashed at a friend’s home while visiting them in another country, or an old acquaintance invited you over to watch the 7th game of the World Series and fed you the equivalent of a three-course meal over the span of eight hours, that’s hospitality.

So When and How Do You Say Thanks?

Popular etiquette recommends that you bring some wine or a pack of beer as a thanks-for-hosting courtesy. Also, a thank you note after your stay is always appreciated and you will be dearly remembered (and invited back) for doing so.

A Short Note Example Thanking a Food Caterer

Dear [Caterer's Name],
I just wanted to take a moment to express my sincere gratitude for the fantastic food you provided for [event]. The [dishes/menu items] were absolutely delicious and received rave reviews from all of the guests.
Your attention to detail and professionalism made the event run smoothly, and I really appreciate all of your hard work.
Thank you again for everything. I will definitely be keeping you in mind for future events.
[Your Name]

Sample Thank You Note Wording Thanking Hosts for Dinner

Dear Fred and Barb,

happy thanksgiving! may your turkey be moist and may no one use that word to describe it.

Thank you so much for including us in your festivities last Friday evening. Your lavish decorations and Bollywood music made the occasion so authentic that it was about as close to a weekend in Delhi as we could hope for! We enjoyed so much the food and the opportunity to meet new friends, many of whom by the end of the evening we felt as though we’d known a lifetime.

I’ll be looking forward to having you as my guests before too long.


Kim and Jane

Note Example: Thanks For Hospitality While Visiting a City

Dear Dorothy and Linds,

your gracious hospitality perfectly suits my willingness to mooch.

We appreciate so much your hospitality last week in showing us around the city and taking us to dinner. Even with my travel schedule, I believe the prawn tempura at King’s is the best I’ve ever eaten. Their address now appears in my little black travel book.

You were so kind to meet us at the airport –- no whimsical feat with the unpredictable schedules airlines fly these days. From finding a place for Ruthann to buy her medication to driving us to watch the sunrise on the beach, you were such gracious hosts.

We hope to plan an equally interesting agenda for you when you give us the pleasure of returning the hospitality.


Jack and Ruthann

Thank You Message to AirBNB Hosts for Their Hospitality

Dear Host,

thanks for extending your hospitality to someone far too cheap to pay for a motel room.

We very much enjoyed our stay last week, thank you again for sharing your beautiful home with us on short notice. This was our first AirBNB booking experience, and what a great introduction this was to a new way of experiencing new places! Your hospitality and generosity were much appreciated, and we cannot thank you enough for your recommendations for where to go and what to eat and what to do — we felt like real locals. We will definitely consider staying at your home again if the timing works out next year!


The Griswolds

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I like to climb mountains, read Nietzsche, and explore the West Coast. I have a BA from York University and yet on this site I sometimes spell like an American (know your audience). Thank you. Thank you very much.