How to Write a Letter of Apology

We all make mistakes from time to time.  When that happens, it is worthwhile to mend the situation.  One way of patching things up is by writing a letter of apology to say you’re sorry.  But how should you go about writing an apology letter?  Keep reading for more about how to write a letter of apology, and then see a free sample apology letter that you can use as a guide for writing your own. 
You may need to write a personal apology letter or a formal or business letter of apology.  In either case, send the letter soon to show that you really value your relationship with the other party.  But wait!  The only thing that could be worse than sending a letter of apology late or not at all is sending one with mistakes, because it will look like you really don’t care.  To prove that you’re sincere in saying sorry, check your spelling, English grammar, and punctuation.

When writing a personal letter of apology…

1. Begin the letter by saying you’re sorry.
2. Admit what you did wrong and take responsibility.
3. Ask if there is any way you can help resolve the situation, and offer to do that.
4. Reassure the other party that you will do your best to prevent the problem from happening again.
5. Suggest meeting in a neutral place to apologize in person and start to rebuild the relationship.
6. Apologize again to close the letter.
7. Consider handwriting the letter instead of typing it on the computer and printing it, for a more personal feel.
8. be sincere!

When writing a formal or business apology letter…

1. Type the letter in a conventional font like Times Roman and print on high-quality, white paper. Use a formal block or semi-block format.
2. Begin the letter by saying you’re sorry.
3. Clearly state the problem and explain as much as possible what went wrong.
4. Try to solve the problem, and give examples of how you can do this.
5. Apologize again to end the letter.

Apology letter example for business:

  • Your address
  • Date
  • Name of Addressee
  • Title, organization
  • Address
  • Dear [name]:
  • I am writing to apologize for the confusion surrounding transaction # 765-989.  We recently began using a          new packaging system, which still has a few small bugs.  This morning we straightened out your order and        sent it.  To compensate for the inconvenience, we have enclosed coupons for you to enjoy on future                  purchases at any of our retail stores. Again, I apologize for the mix-up in your order and any trouble this            may have caused you.
  • Sincerely,
  • Signature
  • First name Last name
  • Customer Service Manager