11 Other Ways to Say “Sorry to Keep You Waiting”

Have you kept someone waiting for longer than you planned? Maybe you’re looking for a more suitable phrase to include in a business email besides “sorry to keep you waiting.”

You’re in luck! This article will look into how to say “sorry to keep you waiting” professionally and politely. There are plenty of great alternatives available.

Other Ways to Say “Sorry to Keep You Waiting”

  • Apologies for the delay
  • I didn’t mean to make you wait
  • Very sorry about the wait
  • I’m sorry if I kept you waiting
  • Very sorry for any inconvenience
  • Sorry for my late reply
  • Sorry about getting back to you so late
  • I’m sorry about all the waiting
  • I finally have an answer for you
  • Apologies for the long wait
  • I hope you weren’t waiting for too long


  • “Sorry to keep you waiting” is a great phrase that works well in most formal emails.
  • You can say “apologies for the delay” in professional settings to be polite.
  • “I didn’t mean to make you wait” is a good conversational alternative to use in messages.

Don’t leave us just yet! Read on to learn more about the best synonyms and how to use them. We’ve explained more about the best formal and informal options to help.

Also, the final section covers more about “sorry to keep you waiting.” It will explain whether it’s correct and appropriate in professional emails.

Apologies for the Delay (Formal)

“Apologies for the delay” is one of the most common formal synonyms. You will often see it in emails when someone doesn’t get back to you right away.

It’s impersonal, which is why it works in business contexts. It shows that you represent a larger organization rather than offering your own apologies.

You may use it when emailing clients. It shows that you regret making them wait for your email response. However, it’s wise to start an email with “apologies for the delay” because it’s polite and apologetic.

“Apologies for the delay” and “sorry to keep you waiting” are both effective. You can switch between them in formal contexts to keep your writing interesting.

Perhaps the following example will help you understand it:

Dear Aimee,

Apologies for the delay, but we have finally found a resolution. Can you come along on Friday to discuss matters?


I Didn’t Mean to Make You Wait (Informal)

“I didn’t mean to make you wait” is a conversational alternative to “sorry to keep you waiting.” It shows you take responsibility for making someone wait longer than you expected.

Generally, starting the phrase with “I didn’t mean” shows that it was an accident. It implies that something was out of your control but prevented you from replying sooner.

You can use it when messaging clients you have a good relationship with. It shows that you regret leaving them in the dark and would like to apologize before offering a solution.

You shouldn’t use “I didn’t mean to make you wait” in formal contexts, though. It’s not as effective as “sorry to keep you waiting.” So, stick to informal contexts when using this phrase.

These examples will show you how it works:

Hey Russell,

I didn’t mean to make you wait for that long! Don’t worry; I found the solution to the problem.

All the best,

Oh, I’m so sorry! I didn’t mean to make you wait at all. You should have told me you were still here.

Is It Correct to Say “Sorry to Keep You Waiting”?

“Sorry to keep you waiting” is correct. You can use it in formal emails to show that you didn’t mean to make someone wait longer than they expected.

For instance, you may have had to find the answer if they asked you a question. If the answer took you a few days to find, you should be polite and say “sorry to keep you waiting.”

You might also use this variation:

  • Sorry for keeping you waiting

The idea behind “to keep” and “for keeping” is the same. However, the tense is different.

“Sorry to keep you waiting” implies that you might have to do more searching before giving someone what they want.

“Sorry for keeping you waiting” implies you have found what they were looking for and no longer need to make them wait.

Here are a few other variations you can use:

  • I am sorry to keep you waiting
  • We are sorry to keep you waiting
  • Sorry to keep you waiting so long

You might notice that “I” and “we” both appear in the above variations. That’s because they’re both correct. However, you can use them slightly differently.

I” shows that you offer your apologies. It is more personal, as it implies that you take responsibility.

We” shows that you represent a larger body and offer apologies for them. So, you might apologize on behalf of a business. “We” allows you to show that the business is sorry, but it’s less personal.

Don’t forget to bookmark this page for later reference. Then, you’ll have some synonyms ready to go whenever you want to replace “sorry to keep you waiting.”