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The Holiday Season is upon us.  The shops and malls are busy again, your credit card is getting a workout and the mail is actually fun to open again…well some of it.  If you are anything like, me, you enjoy sending out holiday cards to family and friends and the anxiously checking the mail to see who has sent you something.


This fun and simple tradition is said to have begun back in the 1800s meant as a way to wish warm holiday greetings on the family, friends and colleagues that you wouldn’t see for the holidays.  That tradition has changed a little bit but the basic idea is the same. If you are planning to send holiday cards to people in your life, there are still a few things to keep in mind. Below are 5 W’s of sending out those holiday greetings.

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The Who of Sending Holiday Greeting Cards

Of course you can’t send out holiday cards without knowing who to send them to first.  It is appropriate to send cards to family, friends, employees, clients and business associates.  The key however is to keep the cards appropriate. It’s maybe not the best idea to send a family photo card to a business associate or client that you barely know.

It’s also good to keep track of your list from year to year.  If you have sent holiday cards to your cousin Sue and her family for the past four years but haven’t received one back, then it is probably ok to remove them from your list.


The What of Sending Holiday Greeting Cards

Consider those on your list.  Like I mentioned above, you maybe shouldn’t send a personal family photo card to a client you don’t know that well.  It’s also maybe not the best idea to send a religious Christmas Card to a family friend that is Jewish. If you aren’t sure, stay with something more general like a Seasons Greetings or Happy Holidays kind of card.


The When of Sending Holiday Greeting Cards

Depending on the holiday you are sending your card for (Christmas, Kwanzaa, Hanukkah, etc.) the timing may be slightly different but in general holiday cards should be sent no more than a week before Thanksgiving.  Even better, would be to mail the cards so that they would be delivered sometime around the second week of December.

Be careful not to wait too long to mail out those cards.  The Post Office gets extra busy around the Holidays and mail service can take days longer than usual.  The worst thing that can happen is waiting too long and your card not being delivered until January.


The Where of Sending Holiday Greeting Cards

Cards for family and friends should be mailed to their homes of course but what about clients, colleagues or business associates.  Traditionally cards for business associates, clients and colleagues that are not friends should be mailed to their place of business.  It isn’t appropriate to mail cards to their home. On the flip side, coworkers’ cards should be mailed to their home. It is also ok to hand them out in the office but this can cause some hard feelings for those that don’t receive one.  Mailing cards to coworkers’ homes also adds a bit more of a personal touch that they will appreciate.


Bonus Tips

Below are few bonus tips to keep in mind as well.

  • Always be sure to include your return address on the envelope.
  • A hand-written personal message is always best but pre-printed cards are acceptable.
  • Even on photo cards, be sure to always include a signature, hand-written or pre-printed.
  • Return the favor to someone that sent you a card but that wasn’t on your list.
  • With today’s modern technology, many of you may be wondering about email holiday cards.  Snail mail is still preferred but email cards are becoming more and more accepted.

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