20+ Believable Excuses for When You’re Running Late

Thứ sáu - 26/04/2024 23:11
Running late for work? We've all been late before, but sometimes, the real reason you're late isn't actually that good of an excuse. That's where we've got you covered: we've got 20+ best excuses for being late to work that your boss will...
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Running late for work? We’ve all been late before, but sometimes, the real reason you’re late isn’t actually that good of an excuse. That’s where we’ve got you covered: we’ve got 20+ best excuses for being late to work that your boss will totally buy. Read through our list to pick out your favorite excuse today.

Things You Should Know

  • Use an excuse like traffic or car troubles to explain why you’re late.
  • Tell your boss you lost your car keys or had to spend time looking for your wallet or purse.
  • Say that your pipes burst or you had another home-related emergency.
  • Tell your boss that your pet was sick or got out, but that they’re fine now.

Email Template and Text Examples for Being Late to Work

Sample Template Email to Boss for Being Late to Work
Sample Example Texts to Boss for Being Late to Work

“I’m stuck in traffic.”

  1. Use traffic as an excuse if you live in a busy area.
    No one likes the morning commute, and there’s a good chance your boss has been stuck in traffic on their way to work before. Plus, traffic isn’t your fault, especially if there was an accident or road work you couldn’t avoid.[1]
    • Make this excuse even more believable by naming highways or streets.
    • “Sorry I’m late, the 26 was really backed up today.”
    • “I got stuck behind that accident on the corner of Maine and 2nd street.”
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“The bus broke down.”

  1. If you take public transportation, blame it on your ride.
    If you regularly commute to work via bus, subway, or train, then you have a perfect excuse sitting in your lap. Let your boss know that while you would have been on time, it was your ride’s fault that you weren’t.[2]
    • “The subway broke down in a tunnel, so I didn’t have any service to call you. Sorry about that.”
    • “The train was running late this morning.”

“I had car trouble.”

  1. Use car trouble if your car is older or breaks down a lot.
    Those of us who drive know just how annoying it is to deal with a dead battery or a faulty spark plug. Tell your boss that you had to deal with an annoying car problem this morning, but you finally got it figured out.[3]
    • “I got a flat tire on my way here. Thank god I had a spare in the trunk.”
    • “I had to get a jump start from my neighbor. I must have left my lights on last night.”
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“I lost my car keys.”

  1. If you tend to misplace things, losing your keys is a great excuse.
    Everyone knows just how annoying it is to misplace your keys, especially when you have to be somewhere. Let your supervisor or boss know that you had to spend a little extra time this morning hunting for your keys before you left.[4]
    • “My toddler loves to hide my keys. I had to spend 20 minutes looking for them this morning!”
    • “I couldn’t find my keys anywhere. I had to call my husband to bring me a spare key so I could leave.”

“I lost my wallet.”

  1. If you have to drive to work, losing your license will make you late.
    Tell your boss that you were about to head out the door, when you realized you didn’t have your wallet or ID with you. You had to spend extra time searching for them before you could leave, which isn’t your fault!
    • “I thought I lost my wallet this morning. Thankfully it was just in my car, but of course I searched my whole house first.”
    • “I forgot my purse and had to run back for it.”
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“I got pulled over.”

  1. Getting pulled over is a risky excuse, but no one can dispute it.
    Don’t tell your boss you got stopped for speeding (since that makes you look bad). Instead, tell them the cops were doing random checks on the highway, and you just got unlucky.
    • “Sorry I’m late, I got stopped by the police for the first time ever today.”
    • “I guess my tags were expired. Thankfully the cop let me off with a warning.”

“I was in a car accident.”

  1. If you drive to work, a fender bender is the perfect excuse.
    Getting into a non-serious car accident is annoying, and it can add a lot of time to your route to work. Tell your boss that you got into a little car accident, and that while you’re fine, you might be a couple minutes late.[5]
    • “Hey boss, I just got into a fender bender. Everyone’s fine, but I have to stick around to get some insurance info.”
    • “Sorry I’m late, someone rear-ended me.”
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“The weather was really bad.”

  1. If the weather is actually awful, blame your tardiness on that.
    Rain storms can cause poor visibility, and a big snow storm could mean you had to dig your car out of your driveway. Just be sure to only use this excuse when the weather is actually bad![6]
    • “I had to wait out that crazy storm this morning. I couldn’t see a thing!”
    • “Sorry I’m late, I had to dig my car out of the snow.”

“I overslept.”

  1. You may make yourself look a bit unorganized, but sleeping in is a good excuse.
    We all do it—maybe you had a late night last night, or maybe you’ve just been extra tired lately. Sleeping in is a believable excuse too, because it doesn’t paint you in the perfect light.[7]
    • “My phone was dead so my alarm didn’t go off.”
    • “My power went out in the middle of the night so my alarm clock didn't work.”
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“I had a dentist appointment.”

  1. Say you had an appointment to excuse your tardiness with good reason.
    Everyone has to go to the dentist or doctor at some point, and you’re no exception. Tell your supervisor that you had an appointment you couldn’t miss this morning.
    • “I had a doctor’s appointment.”
    • “I had to take my child to the dentist this morning.”

“I had to drop my child off at school.”

  1. Use your children as an excuse if you need to.
    If you have kids, you know that not every morning runs smoothly. Maybe your child missed the bus, or your partner was sick and couldn’t take them. If your boss is a parent too, they’re sure to understand.[8]
    • “My son had a late start this morning.”
    • “I had to help my daughter carry in her science project.”
    • Let your employer know when you think you will be late. It can be as simple as, "So sorry I will be late this morning. You can expect me in at 10 am."
    • When you arrive at work, you can tell them why you are late.
    • You can share what you feel comfortable sharing. For example, your alarm did not work, the car did not start, or kids refused to get in the car for school.
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“My babysitter was late.”

  1. If someone watches your kids, blame your tardiness on them.
    Tell your supervisor that you tried your best, but you couldn’t leave your house until the babysitter got there. They’ll understand, especially if they deal with something similar.[9]
    • “My nanny had a family emergency, so I had to make other arrangements.”
    • “My babysitter didn’t show up today.”

“My child is sick.”

  1. Use your child’s sickness as an excuse if you’re hours late.
    Maybe your kid got sick and had to stay home from school, or maybe you were up all night with them. Either way, your boss will understand if your child wasn’t feeling well.[10]
    • “My daughter was sick and had to stay home today, so I had to call someone to watch her.”
    • “I was up all night comforting my toddler; he has the flu.”
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“My pet is sick.”

  1. Use your pet’s sickness if you don’t have a child.
    If your dog is throwing up or your cat is limping, maybe you have to run them to the vet before work. Everyone loves animals, so your boss is sure to understand this excuse.[11]
    • “I had to run my dog to the vet. Thankfully, he’s okay.”
    • “I was up all night with my sick cat.”

“My pet ran away.”

  1. If you have a dog, blame your tardiness on them running away.
    It’s no fun when a pet gets loose, and it’s even less fun when you have to spend your morning catching them. Let your boss know that you fortunately caught your animal, but it made you a tad bit late for work.[12]
    • “I spent an hour chasing after Baxter this morning. He sure can run fast!”
    • “I accidentally let Ralph loose this morning. Thankfully I managed to lure him back inside with treats.”
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“I was sick.”

  1. Coming into work after a sickness shows that you’re a strong person.
    Let’s say you woke up feeling kind of bad, but after an hour or two, you felt okay enough to come into the office. Or, maybe you slept in because you were up all night feeling bad.[13]
    • “I woke up with a migraine, but thankfully the medicine I took helped it subside.”
    • “I wasn’t sure I’d make it in today, but I feel a lot better now.”

“My water pipes burst.”

  1. Use your home as an excuse if you’re a homeowner.
    Maybe your power went out, or your basement flooded. Your boss will understand that these things are annoying and can make you late for work. Just remember that you can only use this type of excuse every now and then, or else it won’t be believable anymore.
    • “There was a small fire in my kitchen this morning. Fortunately, everyone’s okay.”
    • “My ceiling started leaking, and I had to call maintenance.”
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“I was robbed.”

  1. A robbery is a solid excuse, but only if you can really sell it.
    This excuse is a tad bit dramatic, so only use it if you’re okay with some drama. Tell your boss that you were mugged or robbed on your way to work if you’re really late.[14] Be sure to only use this excuse once, or else your boss might catch on.
    • “I got mugged on the train on my way here, and I had to file a police report.”
    • “My phone got stolen so I couldn't call to tell you I’d be late.”

“My home was burglarized.”

  1. Try out burglary as an excuse if you want some sympathy.
    This is another dramatic excuse, so you may want to save it for when you’re really late. Let your boss know that your home was robbed in the wee hours of the morning, and you had to wait for the cops to come and collect evidence.[15] Since homes rarely get burglarized twice, save this excuse for when you really need it.
    • “The police took forever to get here. I had to leave 2 hours late.”
    • “I almost didn’t come in today. It was a terrible experience!”
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“I had a family emergency.”

  1. Try a family emergency if you don’t feel like explaining things.
    “Family emergency” can mean a lot of things, and we’ve all had a family emergency before. If you don’t want to go into details, just let your boss know that there was an emergency you had to take care of.[16] Make sure not to use this excuse too often, or your boss might start asking questions.
    • “I had a personal issue.”
    • “I had to be with my family this morning.”

“I had a death in the family.”

  1. Use a death in the family to excuse any tardiness or absences.
    This excuse will garner you a lot of sympathy, so you should only use it as a last resort. Let your boss know that an extended family member has died, and you had to take the morning to help make arrangements.[17] Be sure not to overuse this excuse, since too many deaths in the family may make your boss suspicious.
    • “My great uncle passed away last night.”
    • “My step-mother’s dad just passed away.”
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