The best belated birthday wishes have the right mix of sincerity, remorse and humor to make the people you love feel special, even if you missed their birthday by a mile.
Striking this perfect balance is what makes the belated birthday messages on this page the very best you can send someone.
If you need a few tips to choose the ideal belated birthday greetings for your situation before you actually pick one, all you need to do is take a few minutes to check out Message Guy's Tip #88 right below.
Message Guy Tip #88: How to pick belated birthday wishes
Don't be embarrassed if you forgot your friend's birthday — just send one of the belated birthday messages right here.
Forgetting somebody’s birthday can make you feel a little embarrassed. Worse, your family or friends may think you don’t care about them enough to remember their special day. They may even be mad at you for forgetting it.
Enter belated birthday wishes, the cure for “birthday forgetitis.”
The big question: what should your belated birthday message say? Should your message be funny or...
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...Should your belated birthday greeting be serious? Should it be apologetic? That depends on your recipients — and if they are actually angry with you for forgetting their birthday.
If birthday boy or girl has a good sense of humor and is not mad at you for your forgetfulness, go the funny route with the belated birthday message you choose.
If birthday boy or girl has a good sense of humor but is slightly mad at you for your forgetfulness, you should still go the funny route and be a little bit apologetic with your birthday wish.
If birthday boy or girl has a sense of humor but is very mad at you, skip the funny route altogether (not even a little bit humorous) and take the serious, apologetic path.
If birthday boy or girl has no sense of humor and is slightly angry or not mad at all at you, take the serious, apologetic path.
If birthday boy or girl has no sense of humor and is very mad at you, go straight to the serious, apologetic path (and hope for the best).
That's not all you should consider when you choose a belated birthday greeting. You should also think about grammar. Yes, grammar. Most people are not aware of the fact that "happy belated birthday" is grammatically incorrect, so you won't see it on this page (or this site). "Belated birthday wishes" or "Here's a belated happy birthday" (or a variation of these expressions) are correct, though. To find out why, read a very short grammarist.com article on this very subject.
Ultimately, your goal is to rectify the situation and make the birthday boy or girl feel just as special as he or she would have felt had you sent your birthday wish on time (or more special, if you're really ambitious with your belated birthday wishes).
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Funny belated birthday wishes
Hope you had a happy birthday. Yes, I missed your special day by a mile, but I think that this birthday message will make you smile — or am I just in denial.
Hope you had a great birthday. I missed eating your cake on your birthday, so I plan to eat at least two desserts today to make up for it.
Hope you had a wonderful birthday. I'm a little late, so I hope you're on the "better late than never" team. Yaaaaay, late team!
Watch your favorite celebrity birthdays
Hope you had a happy birthday! There's no excuse for how late I am with your birthday message, but you know I can make one up if I had to.
Although I lost my mind for all 24 hours of your birthday and forgot to wish "happy birthday" to you, I hope you'll accept a "belated happy birthday" now as a down payment for a BIG, BIG, BIG birthday hug.
It’s apparent that you have been blessed with many things on your birthday. Unfortunately, a punctual birthday message from me was not one of them. Hope you had an amazing day!
Message Guy Pick
Often, funny belated birthday messages, like the one just below, are enough to make someone special virtually forget you've forgotten his or her birthday. Why? For one reason...
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The birthday message's play on words and apology are done in a way that humorously and properly addresses the whole issue of forgetting the birthday of someone special...without being heavy handed (which can make the birthday boy or girl feel uncomfortable instead of special). I would send this one in a heartbeat.
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It feels like you just had a birthday the other day. Oh yeah, you did. Sorry, I am late. Wishing you a belated happy birthday!