Gratitude Messages: What to Write in an Appreciation Card

A greeting card that reads

Most of us have written thank-you notes expressing gratitude for a gift, a meal, or a favor. These are the special-occasion gestures we’ve been trained to deem thank-you-worthy.

What we don’t tend to notice or say thank you for as often are the ongoing, faithful acts of service happening around us and for us every day. People like teachers, barbers, dog walkers and mail carriers are absolutely worthy of our gratitude for doing what they do day in and day out. And we don’t have to wait for Thanksgiving or Christmas to thank them.

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If you aren’t sure how to begin, keep reading for tips and inspiration about what to write in an appreciation card. Some of our ideas are general enough to work for helpers in any line of work, while others are tailored to specific professions. Use the links below to jump right to the section you need!

Find tips for crafting your own gratitude message and get some real life examples from Hallmark Writer Courtney Taylor in the video below or skip straight to gratitude message ideas using the links above.

Simple Thanks  

Here are some short but heartfelt messages of gratitude that could go to someone in just about any profession.


  • “Thanks for doing what you do!”
  • “You are appreciated for all you do. Thank you so much.”
  • “The work you do is important and so appreciated.”
  • “Sending a little heartfelt appreciation your way today!”
  • “Just wanted to express our deep gratitude for the dedicated work you do day after day.”
  • “For all you do—and for the kind, thoughtful way you do it—thank you.”
  • “We could never take for granted the hard work you do. We see it, and we appreciate you.”
  • “Thank you for your friendly, dependable service through every season.”
  • “Thank you for going the extra mile for all of us who depend on you. I simply couldn’t be more grateful.”

Pro Tip: A short-and-simple thank-you message can be especially perfect when you don’t know your recipient well and/or when you prefer to let an accompanying gift, treat, or gift card express some of your gratitude for you.


Everybody likes to hear now and then that they’re good at what they do. A sincere compliment is a great way to take your appreciation up a notch.


  • “Has anyone told you lately that you’re great at what you do? Well, you are, and it’s appreciated!”
  • “It’s easy to see how much you care about the people you serve. I’m grateful to be one of them.”
  • “You go above and beyond daily. But here lately, you’ve been going above-er and beyond-er. Thank you!”
  • “You’re someone who makes a difference every day. So grateful.”
  • “Thank you. Your commitment and professionalism mean more than you know.”
  • “When I follow Mr. Rogers’ advice and look for the helpers in this world, I see you and the work you’re doing. Thank you.”
  • “Never doubt the difference you make. It’s huge—and so is the gratitude in this little note.”
  • “It’s a good feeling knowing there are caring, capable people like you working hard for everyone around you. Thank you for all you do!”

Pro Tip: Some helpers may balk at being called “heroic” for what they see as simply doing their jobs. It may actually mean more to them if you describe them as good, great, capable, competent, caring, committed, dedicated, devoted, expert, excellent, hardworking, kind, professional, reliable, smart, or something similarly down-to-earth.


Anytime we get a glimpse into what teachers do on a daily basis, a couple of things become clear: 1) They really care, and 2) They should be getting paid like rock stars. Until that second thing happens, we can at least make a point of expressing our gratitude for them.


  • “Just sending a big thank-you to one of our favorite teachers today. Thank you for doing what you do!”
  • “You’re an outstanding teacher, and you’re appreciated. Just wanted you to hear that today!”
  • “Thank you for being a teacher. Clearly, you were meant to do it!”
  • “I’m so grateful my daughter has the chance to learn from a great teacher like you.”
  • “It’s touching to see the heart you have for each one of your kids. Thank you for teaching.”
  • “It’s easy to see how much you care about your students. So grateful our Colin is one of them.”
  • “We know teaching definitely has its challenges. Thanks for hanging in there with dedication and heart!”
  • From younger student: “Thank you for being a nice teacher! I like that you wear purple fingernail polish and never give homework on weekends.”
  • From older student: “I’ve learned so much from you. I may not remember it all forever, but I’ll remember the way you cared and the way you inspired me to keep learning.”

Pro Tip: As suggested in the examples above, get kids and teens in on thanking their teachers, counselors, paraprofessionals and other education professionals who help them along their way. It’s good for kids’ development—and it will probably lead to the most memorable and meaningful messages for the educators on the receiving end.


Want something to go with your kind words? Check out these teacher appreciation ideas.

Healthcare Professional  

Nurses, doctors, and other health professionals really do put the “care” in healthcare. Expressions of gratitude can be especially encouraging as they carry out their critical and often stressful work.


  • “Just a friendly reminder that you’re an excellent doctor doing much-needed and much-appreciated work. Thank you!”
  • “The people you’re caring for are in great hands. Thanks for doing what you do.”
  • “Your expert caring makes lives better. I know because mine is one of them!”
  • “Thank you for being a nurse. You’re an amazing one.”
  • “It’s a good feeling knowing there are experienced, capable doctors like you out there. Thank you for being there with expertise and caring for the people who need you.”
  • “Sending heartfelt thanks for the dedicated work you do as a nurse.”
  • “Most of the time, I’m exaggerating when I call someone ‘a lifesaver,’ but in your case, it happens to be accurate. Thank you for saving and improving lives every day!”
  • “Being a nurse can be tough, but you’ve risen to the occasion with courage and strength. So grateful for you and the important work you’re doing.”

Pro Tip: Remember the counselors, psychiatrists, or mental health professionals you may know, too. Their health work is often lower profile but still critical and worth recognizing with a message of gratitude.


Get even more ideas for expressing gratitude to healthcare professionals here.

Veterinarians, Groomers, Sitters and Walkers  

The people who take care of our pets are truly special. Without them, owning a pet—and experiencing that one-of-a-kind love—might not even be possible. Sharing a small note of thanks lets them know what a big role they play in your life. 


  • “You treat [Bella] like she’s your own, and we’re so grateful for that.”
  • “Thank you so much for taking such good care of [Jack]. You make enjoying his love paws-ible!”
  • “I know grooming [Dexter] can be a challenge. I’m so glad I can feel confident about leaving him in your expert, caring hands.”
  • “With everything our family has going on, the time and attention you give [Cairo] is such a blessing.”
  • “We’re so grateful for the dedication you show to keeping [Sammie] a happy, healthy member of our family.”
  • “Every time [Charlie] comes to see you, he leaves feeling so happy. Thank you for the compassionate service you provide!”

Pro Tip: Have a little fun and add a cute PS. from your fur-kid. A note like “Sorry I squirm so much during baths” acknowledges the effort required to take care of your pet but in a way that’s likely to make them smile. 

Mail Carrier  

It’s customary to thank mail carriers during the holiday season, but the work they do is year-round, and our thanks can be, too.


  • “Just a little out-of-the-blue thank-you for my favorite mail carrier.”
  • “You’re appreciated! Thanks for always delivering.”
  • “It means a lot having a mail carrier as friendly and dependable as you. So glad we’ve got you to count on.”
  • “Your reliable service always means a lot. Thank you for the work you do.”
  • “TO: One outstanding mail carrier…FROM: One grateful mail recipient…THANK YOU!”
  • “Thank you for all the smiles you deliver.”
  • “Even bills are a little easier to take coming from a nice mail carrier like you. Thanks!”
  • “You probably know some weird things about us based on our mail. Thanks for not judging…and for the important work you do!”

Pro Tip: If you’ve got sidewalk or driveway near your mailbox, you could put your artistic skills to work and sidewalk-chalk your message of thanks.

Stylist, Barber or Aesthetician  

Being a stylist or aesthetician can be a demanding job. So it’s always a nice idea to give your best to the people who help you look your best—and maybe throw in an extra-large tip sometimes, too.


  • “I always walk in here knowing that I’m going to walk out feeling so good about myself. You do that. And I’m so grateful.”
  • “Thanks for always helping me look like I have it all together, haha.”
  • “You’ve seen my hair at its worst, but you never fail to make me feel my best. Thank you so much.”
  • “Every compliment I get on my [hair/nails/skin] is thanks to your years of training and amazing talent.”
  • “Your warmth and professionalism are why I keep coming back. I hope you never leave!”
  • “My [hair/nails/skin] has/have never looked so good. I’m so incredibly glad I found you!”

Pro Tip: Stylists and aestheticians are on their feet a lot of the day. A nice gift idea might be a foot massage or pedicure of their own!  

Retail Worker  

All of us count on the dependable employees who keep grocery and hardware stores, pharmacies, and other busy retailers running smoothly. Your message of thanks to them can be a bright spot in the middle of a stressful workday.


  • “I hope you know just how grateful your customers are for you.”
  • “The work you’re doing isn’t easy, but it’s so needed and appreciated. Thank you.”
  • “Thank you for your cheerful service. Your friendliness makes my day every time I shop here.”
  • “Thanks for showing up and doing good work every day like it’s no big deal. It actually IS a big deal, and you’re appreciated for it.”
  • “Thank you for making a point of telling us about the Wednesday sales. It’s nice knowing you’re looking out for us. We hope you’re looking out and taking good care of yourself, too.”
  • “Thank you for going above and beyond to provide great customer service. All of you are truly appreciated.”
  • “So grateful our neighborhood grocery store is staffed by the best and friendliest employees anywhere. Y’all are the best, and we’re grateful for each one of you!”

Pro Tip: If you know your recipient’s name, address your message to them: “Hi, JoAnn—” or “Dear Mr. Jones.” If not, get creative: “To my favorite cashier:” or “Dear 95th Street Hy-Vee Team,” etc.

Restaurant or Delivery Worker  

After being good and eating in for days on end, takeout can be such a treat. But that deliciousness doesn’t happen magically. It takes a dedicated team to prep, cook, package, and get it to your car window or front door—and that calls for a thank-you.


  • “We hope you’re staying safe out there. Thanks for taking care of us!”
  • “You have no idea how much happiness you’re delivering with every takeout bag. Thank you for keeping the goodness coming!”
  • “Original Pizza night is pretty much like Christmas Day around here. Thank you for continuing to serve up the best.”
  • “Just wanted to tell you what a highlight your new Friday family specials are. We look forward to them all week. Thank you!”
  • “Thanks for delivering the good stuff. You’re so dependable—and fast! It’s appreciated.”
  • “You’re serving more than food—it’s comfort and family fun. Thank you for that!”
  • “Thank you for the good eats and the great service. You have my loyalty forever!”

Pro Tip: Gratitude for a job well-done is always welcome, but gratitude accompanied by a generous tip is likely even more welcome.

Closing Thoughts  

Who are some of the other helpers and service providers you might want to reach out to with a message of appreciation? Consider spiritual leaders (pastor, priest, rabbi and others), public safety pros (fire and police), home and yard maintenance providers or anyone else who regularly crosses your path and makes life better.

Whomever you’re writing to, you can round out your message with one of these grateful closings…or choose one of your own.


  • Warmly,
  • Sincerely,
  • Thank you!
  • Warmest thanks,
  • With thanks,
  • With deepest thanks,
  • With heartfelt appreciation,
  • With gratitude,
  • Gratefully,
  • Blessings,
  • God bless,
  • Beyond grateful,
  • Feeling thankful,