Write the Perfect Reschedule Meeting Email: Guide and Templates

Have you ever been in a situation where you are supposed to attend a meeting, but need to reschedule it due to unexpected issues? 

This could be a conflict with another meeting, a change in the company's schedule, or someone’s sudden illness. Rescheduling often means lost productivity – so it's important to handle the situation professionally.

Sending a reschedule meeting email with ample notice is the most courteous way to let colleagues/clients know you won’t be able to make it.

In this article, we’ll clarify how to write an excellent meeting rescheduling email with 2 ready-to-use email templates. 

Let’s dive in!

Common Reasons to Reschedule a Meeting

A reschedule meeting email is a polite message sent to notify attendees of a change in the date, time, or location of a previously scheduled meeting invitation. Sending a reschedule team meeting email as soon as possible is a vital workplace etiquette to ensure that all attendees have the most up-to-date information.

Common reasons for rescheduling include:

  • A prior engagement, a conflict with another meeting.
  • With bad weather forecasts for the day of the meeting, it may be safer to delay it until the weather clears. 
  • A power outage or other emergency in the workplace makes it difficult to hold the meeting as planned.
  • The agenda for the meeting has changed and requires more time than initially planned.
  • You have an urgent issue at home that needs your attention.
  • You are feeling ill or have a doctor's appointment. 

How to Craft a Reschedule Meeting Email?

A well-written email to reschedule a meeting will help you convey your regret for any inconveniences caused and encourage colleagues to respond fast to agree on a new meeting time. 

To get these results, follow along to write an effective reschedule meeting email. 

Start with a clear subject line

The subject line is arguably the most important part of the email, as it will determine whether or not the receiver opens it. 

A good subject line should be clear and concise while still conveying its importance. For example, "Rescheduling our Meeting" is much better than "I'm so sorry, but can we reschedule?" 

If it’s a meeting with someone you are not familiar with or outside of your company, be sure to include your name and your organization. This helps the receiver immediately place who you are with no added confusion. 

Provide an apology and a credible reason  

Begin with a simple greeting, apologize sincerely for the inconvenience, and explain why you request to reschedule the meeting. If there is a specific reason for the requested change (e.g., you have another meeting scheduled at that time), be sure to mention it to show credibility. 

Again, be as concise as possible – no need to go into excessive detail. 

Propose an alternative meeting date and time

Be sure to propose alternative dates and times for the rescheduled meeting in the body of the email. This will show that you're still committed to making the meeting happen, despite the inconvenience.

If there are multiple options and also a meeting agenda, include them all in the email so that the recipient can choose the best option for them. Also, show your willingness to adjust according to their schedule.

Notify everyone as soon as possible

Once you realize you are not able to attend the meeting and need to reschedule it, notify all the attendees as soon as possible. There is nothing quite as disrespectful as waiting until the eleventh hour to tell your team or clients that the meeting will not take place. 

If you can, send out the meeting reschedule request several days before the meeting. You can also start by sending an instant message and then a formal email. This will give other attendees time to adjust their schedules accordingly.

Find the right balance in tone

You don't want to appear flippant, but you also don't want to sound overly formal. The goal is to sound respectful and apologetic while still maintaining a level of professionalism. 

Thank the recipient for their understanding and flexibility, and ask if the new meeting time will work better for everyone involved. 

Personalize the email

Personalization helps to build rapport and maintain a positive relationship, even when you’re rescheduling. As a bonus, it demonstrates that you are organized and detail-oriented. 

For example, you cannot send a reschedule meeting email to a client without addressing them personally. The odds are that the client will be offended to receive an email that says “Dear All” or “To whom it may concern”– like they’re just another person on an email blast for you. 

Show Appreciation 

Remember your team has made time and even much preparation for this meeting and is now changing their calendars again to accommodate you. Showing appreciation for your team members when meetings are rescheduled sets a great precedent for the future. 

Call the recipient if needed 

If you've sent a reschedule meeting email and haven't received a response, or if the meeting is going to start soon, it's probably best to call the recipient instead. Emails can sometimes feel impersonal, and this is especially true when it comes to scheduling. 

If you call, you'll be able to tell them as soon as possible and get a sense of whether or not they're available on the new date/time. Plus, it'll be one less email for them to respond to. If you're unsure how your reschedule meeting email will be received, pick up the phone instead.

2 Reschedule Meeting Templates for you 

Want a ready-to-use reschedule email example? We’ve got you. 

In the next part, We’ll provide two templates for formal and informal reschedule meeting emails. Each email has an apology, reason, and alternate dates and times for the next meeting, helping you make a meeting reschedule politely.

Formal reschedule meeting email 

A formal email template for rescheduling a business meeting will show your professionalism and better suits the following situations:

  • The meeting is with a client or prospect.
  • The meeting is with a senior executive.
  • The meeting is with a different business.

Subject Line: Rescheduling Request for [Meeting Name]

Dear [Name],

I’m [Name] from [Company/Department Name]. We had a meeting booked on [Date and time] to discuss about [Topic].  

While I was looking forward to the meeting, I’m afraid I can’t attend it due to [mention your reason], really sorry about this. Might it be possible for us to reschedule the meeting?

The following are my available time for the postponed meeting:

  1. [New Date] and [New time]
  2. [New Date] and [New time]
  3. [New Date] and [New time]

Please let me know if any of these options work for you or if you require a different time. 

I apologize sincerely for any inconvenience this may cause and look forward to connecting with you soon.

Thank you,

[Your name]

[Company and contact information]

Informal reschedule meeting email

In general, you might use an informal email template for any meeting that is not time-sensitive or the result of a formal request (such as a job interview). This includes:

  • Most internal meetings 
  • Meetings with acquaintances

Dear [name]/ Hi Team,

I regret to inform you I am not possible to attend [the meeting] scheduled on [date] and need to reschedule it. [Reason for rescheduling]. I apologize for any inconvenience and hope we can reschedule for another date.

Would it be possible for us to meet on either [date 1] or [date 2] instead? Please let me know what time would work best for you. 

Thank you for your understanding.

Sincerely,

[Your name]

Reschedule better and faster 

Knowing how to politely reschedule a meeting plays a significant role in building work relationships. Here's a little recap of what is most important in your reschedule meeting email:

  • The email content should be apologetic and polite, explaining the situation as briefly as possible. 
  • Timing is vital – send the email as soon as you know there will be a conflict. 
  • Keep your tone respectful and understanding.