What to Write in a Retirement Card – Easy to Follow Guide with 55 Retirement Card Messages

by Sarah De Winne

Are you struggling for ideas about what to write in a retirement card for a co-worker, friend or family member?  Don’t worry because you are not alone.  It can be extremely challenging to find a unique message for retirees.

What to Write in a Retirement Card


Our easy-to-follow guide is full of helpful ideas about what to write in a retirement card. It includes a list of 55 retirement card messages sorted into categories. Here are some of suggestions to get you started:

  • When you retire, you switch bosses – from the one who hired you to the one who married you.
  • Finally, your retirement has arrived!  Early mornings and stress are a thing of the past.  It is time for you now to do the things that you love.  Enjoy your well-earned retirement.
  • Retirement is when you stop living at work and start working at living.
  • It is time to live your life by a compass, not a clock!  Enjoy your retirement travel plans!
  • Congratulations on your retirement!  Looking at the profit and loss sheet, your family will profit, and you will be a loss for the company.  Farewell and good luck!

3 Quick Tips – Deciding What to Write in a Retirement Card


Although retirement is a common event, it is a life-changing milestone and deserves a well-chosen retirement card message.  Here are some quick tips for you to think about before deciding what to write in a retirement card:

1. Who is the Retirement Card For?

Before you decide what to write in a retirement card, think about who the retirement card is for?  Importantly, this will help you find the most suitable words for your retirement message. 

If you don’t know the retiree very well, then a general retirement message which expresses your congratulations and a light-hearted wish would be appropriate:


However, if you are writing a retirement card for someone you know very well (e.g. a relative, friend or long-standing co-worker), you can be less formal and incorporate personal anecdotes and humour into your retirement message:


The personality of the retiree will also inform your choice of words for retirement.  This knowledge will help you decide whether you should be funny or say something meaningful and inspirational.  Think about how your retirement message will be received by the retiree.

2. Why is the Person Retiring?


Another important factor to consider is why the person is retiring from their position.  Some people choose to retire whereas others have no choice about retiring.  Perhaps they are suffering from ill-health or their organisation no longer needs them.

If someone is retiring by choice, they are likely to be happy and enthusiastic about their new personal situation and ready to enjoy retirement life.  On the other hand, if someone has been forced to retire, they may be experiencing very different emotions about their retirement.

The words you choose to write in a retirement card will be different in each of these scenarios.  When you decide what to write in a retirement card, be empathetic.  Keeping the retiree’s personal situation in mind will ensure that your retirement message is appropriate and sincere.

3. Should I Write a Personal Retirement Message or Use a Retirement Quote?


There is no right or wrong answer to this.  If you are confident about writing, a personal retirement message is an original and unique way of celebrating someone’s retirement whether they are an acquaintance or well-known to you. 

To help you get started, check out our 9 top tips on how to write a retirement message below.

9 Top Tips about What to Write on a Retirement Card


If you have decided to write your own retirement message, here are our 9 top tips to help you get started:

  1. Start by saying congratulations!
  2. Acknowledge the retiree’s professional and personal contributions, achievements and hard work over the years.
  3. Reflect on their greatest qualities and characteristics.
  4. Share a special memory about the retiree.
  5. Tell them how they have supported or inspired you.
  6. Mention things you will miss about the retiree.
  7. Remind the retiree about things they won’t miss (eg. alarm clocks, long-winded meetings, short lunch breaks, etc.)
  8. Comment on the retiree’s future plans and things they can look forward to after retirement (e.g. travel, relocation, lazy lunches, new hobbies, etc).
  9. End by sending the retiree general well wishes for their future.

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Of course, this is just a suggestion of topics you could write about.  Feel free to change the order, miss ideas out or add your own.  The idea is to use your intimate knowledge of the retiree to write a meaningful message which they will remember.

However, not everyone is confident and skilled at using words.  Retirement quotes are a great way of getting some inspiration.  If you don’t know what to write in a retirement card, you can use quotes as stand-alone retirement messages in your retirement card or use them to inspire your own thoughts and words.

To make it easier for you to find suitable messages for retirement, check out our comprehensive list of 55 retirement messages below which has been sorted into 11 different categories:

Essential List of 55 Retirement Messages by Category


If you need some inspiration about words for a retirement card, here is our comprehensive list of 55 messages for a retirement card organised into different categories:

No Fuss Congratulations on Your Retirement Messages

  1. Congratulations on your retirement!  Now you have time to relax and enjoy all the things you didn’t have time for when you were working!
  2. Congratulations on your retirement!  Enjoy your permanent weekend!
  3. Congratulations on your retirement.  Now the fun really begins!
  4. Congratulations on your outstanding career and best wishes for your retirement!
  5. Congratulations and enjoy every minute of your retirement!

Congratulations and enjoy every minute of your retirement!

  1. Now retirement has caught up with you, you’ve no rush to get out of bed.  Rest, relax, read a book, and let others work instead.
  2. Finally, your retirement has arrived!  Early mornings and stress are a thing of the past.  It is time for you now to do the things that you love.  Enjoy your well-earned retirement.
  3. Stay young at heart, kind in spirit, and enjoy retirement living.  (Danielle Duckery)
  4. May all the years ahead bring you much happiness and relaxation.  Enjoy your retirement!  You deserve it!
  5. Wishing you all the best as you retire.  You have worked hard for so many years and deserve to relax and enjoy retirement life!

For even more inspiration about general retirement quotes, you can read our earlier posts we have published which lists 67 of the best retirement quotes. or 61 Memorable Retirement Quotes for Teachers and Poems for Retired Teachers or 50 Easy to Adapt Retirement Quotes for Boss

Funny Retirement Messages

  1. Retirement is wonderful.  It’s doing nothing without worrying about getting caught at it!
  2. Retirement is like a long vacation in Las Vegas.  The goal is to enjoy it the fullest, but not so fully that you run out of money! (Jonathan Clements)
  3. Who do you call a person who is happy on Monday? Retired! (Unknown)
  4. The trouble with retirement is that you never get a day off!  (Abe Lemons)
  5. When you retire, you switch bosses – from the one who hired you to the one who married you. (Unknown)

Inspirational Retirement Messages

  1. Retirement is when you stop living at work and start working at living.
  2. The joy of retirement comes in those everyday pursuits that embrace the joy of life. (Byron Pulsifer)
  3. On your retirement.  For the dedication and hard work, you deserve the best retirement every.  Enjoy this new journey of your life.  Cherish every moment and have fun!
  4. Often when you think you are at the end of something, you’re at the beginning of something else.  (Fred Rogers)
  5. For many, retirement is a time for personal growth, which becomes the path to greater freedom (Robert Delamontague)

For additional examples of inspirational retirement messages that will be appreciated, have a look at our earlier post about the Best Retirement Sentiments and Sayings.

Thank You Retirement Messages

  1. Thank you for your (number) years of dedicated service to our organisation.  Your passion and commitment shone through in everything you did.  Enjoy your well-earned retirement.
  2. Congratulations on your amazing career.  We are so proud of you and hope you are too!  Enjoy retirement life!
  3. You are a true professional who has led by example every day.  You inspire everyone around you, and I know that you will continue to touch the lives of those around you in your retirement.  Congratulations!
  4. Your outstanding contribution to our organisation will never be erased.  We love all that you did here.  Now it’s time for you to go and do all that you absolutely love.  Enjoy every second of your retirement!
  5. What are we going to do without you? We will miss your professionalism, commitment and expert advice but congratulations on your retirement!

Adventure Retirement Quotes

  1. Retirement only means that it is time for a new adventure.
  2. Retirement is not the end of the road.  It is the beginning of the open highway.  (Unknown)
  3. You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.  (C.S. Lewis)
  4. A new and exciting chapter is about to begin!  Can’t wait to see where it takes you!  Enjoy the journey!  Best wishes and congratulations on your retirement!
  5. It is time to live your life by a compass, not a clock!  Enjoy your retirement travel plans!

Retirement Messages for Family

  1. With much love and congratulations on your well-earned retirement.
  2. No one deserves a happy retirement as much as you do!  Congratulations!
  3. As you retire, I want to tell you how proud I am of how hard you have worked professionally and for our family.  You are a fantastic role model and will continue to inspire me every day!  Much love and congratulations on your retirement!
  4. We are so proud of all your achievements at work and at home.  You have worked tirelessly to support our family.  Now it’s time to enjoy retirement life and spend time doing the things you want to do!  Happy retirement!
  5. The best part of seeing you retire is knowing that we will have more time together.  I cannot wait to continue our journey together.  With love and congratulations on your retirement.

Retirement Messages for Friend

  1. You may have retired, but don’t act your age!  Stay young at heart and enjoy everything that retirement has to offer!  Congratulations!
  2. It is time to dust off that bucket list and start making a list!  Wishing you much happiness and fun in your retirement!
  3. The time has finally come for you to be your own boss!  Take it easy and enjoy retirement life!
  4. You have worked your entire life for this day, and you deserve it!  All the best for a happy and healthy retirement!
  5. Have fun with your new freedom!  Here’s hoping that your retirement is a dream come true!

Retirement Messages for Boss

  1. Congratulations on your retirement!  Looking at the profit and loss sheet, your family will profit, and you will be a loss for the company.  Farewell and good luck!
  2. Your contribution is matchless, your dedication is endless, your guidance is priceless, and your absence is undesirable.  Happy retirement!
  3. You are one of the hardest working people I have ever met!  Enjoy your retirement because you have earned it!
  4. Wishing you a satisfying and stress-free retirement!  Think of us from time to time still stuck in the office!  Happy retirement.
  5. Anyone can be a boss, but it takes someone extra special to be a leader.  Thanks for leading us so inspirationally through good times and bad.  We will miss you but wish you all the best for a long and happy retirement.

Retirement Quotes for Co-worker

  1. Congratulations!  The money is no better in retirement, but the hours definitely are!
  2. You have been promoted to the best phase of your life!  Congratulations and enjoy your retirement.
  3. Your new KPIs are relaxation, enjoyment and wellbeing.  Happy retirement!
  4. Congratulations on your retirement.  It has been awesome working alongside you.  Make sure you have fun, relax and avoid work at all cost!
  5. Congratulations on your retirement!  Although, didn’t you stop working years ago?! Joking aside, enjoy every minute of your retirement and don’t miss us too much!

Retirement Messages for Teachers

  1. Sadly, all great teachers need to retire one day.  You have left footprints on the hearts and minds of so many students!  Enjoy your retirement!
  2. Good teachers are the reason why ordinary students dream of doing extraordinary things!  It’s your time to dream big now and try something new!  You will be greatly missed but enjoy your retirement!
  3. Teachers reach deep inside their students and find their hidden strengths.  They never give up on students and believe passionately in their futures.  Now is the time to enjoy your future.  Enjoy retired life!
  4. It’s time to forget the timetable and take time out for you!  Enjoy your well-deserved retirement!
  5. Thank you for your dedication to the teaching profession for (number) years.  It’s time to put down your marking pen and enjoy retirement life!

If want to know even more ideas about what to write in a retirement card for a teacher, you can read our other article which lists 61 Memorable Retirement Quotes and Poems for Teachers.

We hope we have helped you decide what to say in your retirement card.  We would love to hear about your favourite wording for a retirement card in the comments below.

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