25 Fantastic Excuses to Get Out of an Event

Sometimes you just don’t want to go to event and that’s okay, we get it. What isn’t so nice is leaving someone hanging or saying you’ll do something that you have absolutely no intention of doing.

If you’re a party person, in your teens or early twenties, a party at “David’s” is news that will stir a lot of excitement. You may not even know who the person is, but as long as your friends are going, you’re good to go. Fast forward to this current moment in your life, (wherever you may be) and you’ve found that you’ve hit a certain point where things have taken a massive swing.  

You’re busy adulting and creating the life you want and deserve, maybe you have children, have important introvert duties or you’ve been silently spending your evenings working on that business you’ve always dreamed of. The point is, now, when you get the same news, and you’re not as excited as you may have once been.   

Unfortunately, “David” is your work colleague, and this party is a big deal for him. Telling “David” a massive no straight to his face will come across as rude and will likely hurt his feelings in the process. However, just this once, you want to put what YOU want first and there’s nothing wrong with that! 

To assist you in this challenging situation, we’ve written 25 fantastic excuses to get you out of an unavoidable social gathering that you don’t want to attend. Some of these excuses are a little ridiculous, others are genius (if we do say so ourselves)! 

Excuse 1 | Your Father Is In Town on Business 


Hey [Name] I’m really sorry to leave you hanging, but my dad just got into to town and I’ve got to be on good daughter/son duty. I hope the party goes well; perhaps we could catch up on another day/ perhaps I could buy you a drink to make it up to you? 

Just type “I got a call from my father in the morning today, and he is here in town for some work business. So, I am going out on dinner with him. I hope it goes well,” and click send. Now, chill and relax. They are not going to find out; unless they know your father very well.

Excuse 2 | You Punctured Your Tire


Hey [Name], sorry I can’t make your party tonight. With my tire being flat I’ve got no way of getting there unfortunately!

Tell them how you were all dressed up for this party, but at the last moment, you found out that your car tire is punctured. Now you don’t have a spare tire, and you are afraid that the mechanic workshop may be closing. Even if it isn’t, it’s going to take a while, and you may not be able to make it up. 

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Excuse 3 | You’ve Got a Horrific Migraine


Hi [Name] I would have loved to come to yours this evening but I’ve got a serious migrane. I think it’s bedrest and plenty of water for me this evening. I hope you have a great time/let me know how it goes!

No one will ask an explanation for this one as we all know how severe it hits. So, they understand that all you need to do is stay in bed (and watch a movie you just bought).

Excuse 4 | You’ve Got an Important Meeting Tomorrow  


Hey I would have loved to come to yours this evening but I’ve got an important meeting tommorow that I need to prepare for. I hope you have a great time/let me know how it goes!

This workrelated excuse is only going to work if it’s not a work gathering. Or maybe if no one from your department is going to be there. So be very sure of both of these conditions otherwise you are going to end up in a more awkward situation.

Excuse 5 | Saving the Pennies


Hi [Name], I’m sorry I can’t make this evening, things are a little tight financially at the moment. How about I take you out for dinner after payday arrives?

We all know how hard it gets to pull off financially at the last dates of the month. So better use that if it’s the 20th or later of the month. (And get a pizza delivered to your address. No?).

Excuse 6 | An Extra Shift 


Hi [Name], I’m sorry I can’t come this evening, [Insert Your Colleague’s Name] just called in sick and I have to cover his/her shift. They helped me out when I was unwell so I thought I’d return the favor. Let’s catch up soon yes?

Inform them how you need to fill up for one of your colleagues for an extra shift, and you won’t be free until midnight. As it is a work emergency, no one is going to know that you are bluffing.

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Excuse 7 | Pet Emergency 


Hey [Name], I’m sorry I can’t make tonight, something’s seriously up with [Insert Your Pets’ Name]. I think I’ve got to take him/her to the vet. I want to hear all the details in our next catch up!

Call or text the host and tell them that your pet is not very well, and you have to take them to the vet. This one will go pretty well, but wait! Do you own a pet?

Excuse 8 | Broken Down Car 


Hey [Name], I’m sorry I can’t make tonight/ your party, my car has gone caput. Catch up soon?

No matter how frequent people use it, this one never gets old. But since you happen to be the person who reneges quite frequently, haven’t you already used that one?

Excuse 9 | Picking Up Little Brother/ Sister


Hey I’ve gotta drive to [Insert Town/College Name] to pick up [Insert Your Sibling’s Name] [Insert the Party Date]. Perhaps we could reschedule.

The family problem makes up the best excusesAnd the best part is that no one doubts them a pinch because they all sound so real, don’t they?

Excuse 10 | Something Urgent Came Up


Hey I’m really sorry I can’t make his evening. Something urgent came up that I need to attend to. I’ll explain later. Have a great night!

A text like this will save you up from any long unnecessary details, especially if you can’t come up with any other genuine sounding excuses at that moment. There is a huge possibility that they won’t remember asking you later in the hustle of all the guests, and in case they do, pick up any other excuse from this list.

Excuse 11 | Existential Crisis 


Hey [Name] I’ve got some stuff going on and I think that would make it difficult to be around me at the moment. I’ll clear my head first, get in a better place and come to the next one. I hope you’re well. 

Let’s be honest; we all have these episodes (if you don’t, most of us do)So if anyone wants to “talk about it later,”; you got yourself a listener. And if you are not looking up for one, have a detailed conversation with him, and I bet you will scare him off.

Excuse 12 | Roommate’s Emergency  


Hey [Name] I think I’ve got to stay in tonight and take care of [Insert Roomates Name]. He/She has a fever. I’m sure your guests wouldn’t want me coming and spreading the germs anyway! 

Make up a story of how your roommate needs your special attention since they are suffering from a fever. And leaving them alone would be a big question mark to the whole face of humanity. Have a good gaming night!

Excuse 13 | The Location is Extremely Difficult to Get to


Hi [Name], I’m so sorry but we’ve been out all day and we’ve found out that the train is suspended from [Your Location], the journey would be a nightmare/ we would probably miss the whole event by the time we arrived. Would you mind if I took you out for some drinks another time? I can give you your card then.

You can easily use this one if the host lives far away. But if that’s not the case, tell them you were here (at some distant place) to pick up some workrelated stuff, and it will be late till you reach there. So, maybe next time? 

Excuse 14 | Stomach Issues! The Lifesaver 


Hey [Name], my stomach is not in the best of conditions at the moment so it’s probably best for everyone if I stay at home this evening…

Believe us, this works every time. It’s natural and can happen to anyone. Plus, no one wants to hear the details.

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Excuse 15 | Just Had A Breakup 


Hey [Name], I’m going to stay home tonight as things just ended with [Insert Your Partner’s Name]. I’ll come out again soon when I’m in a better place. Have a great night.

If the host does not know about your dating life, you can easily go with this one. Because all you need to do is say these four words, and the magic will work. To enhance the dramatic effect, you can fill up your voice with tears and can have a catharsis you were longing for.

Excuse 16 | A Hectic Week 


Hey [Name], sorry to be that person, but I’m exhausted from everything going on this week. Could we catch up at a less hectic week? Thanks

Tell the host a detailed story of how hectic your last week was with all the office meetings, official tours, and prepping up for the big seminar that went great today. “But since I am pretty much exhausted, I don’t need anything more than my bed and a day‘s sleep. So why not plan this up again someday?”

Excuse 17 | Tell Them the Truth 


Hey [Name], thanks for the invite but I’m going to use this evening to recharge. Things have been chaotic and I need a little time to recoop.

You can consider this option as well. Only if you think the person will understand. Otherwise, there is no harm in considering.

Excuse 18 | No One To Babysit 


Hey, apologies for flaking, but my babysitter just called and told me she couldn’t make it today. We’ll have to reschedule another time I’m afraid!

“The babysitter just called and told me she couldn’t make it today” That’s all you need to say to them. They can’t ask to leave them alone at home nor do they want their party blessed by the presence of these little party wreckers.

Excuse 19 | Blame It on the Cab 


Hi [Name], my cab firm said there won’t be any availability for an hour. You should probably go ahead and [Insert Activity] without me.

If you do not own a car, you might be thinking that you got to pass all the car excuses. Well, we got one for you too. “The peak factor was approaching 4.5” or “I couldn’t find a single driver in my area” will work. Happy Me time!

Excuse 20 | You Committed to Go on A Date 


Hey [Name], sorry can’t do tonight. I decided to take charge of my horrific dating life and go on an actual date. Don’t want to be one of those flaky people anc cancel last minute on them. Wish me luck!

To use this excuse, you need to make a story of “how awful that Tinder date went” to be described later to the party host. Just in case. 

Excuse 21 | You Misplaced Your Wallet 


Hey [Name], I would’ve loved to have gone out tonight but I’m currently searching for my wallet. I think I need to call my credit card company to get everything frozen…

Our wallet holds all of our important things, including cash, id, and credit cards. So traveling, without one, is not a good option even if traveling means going across two blocks.

Excuse 22 | Your Water Mains Broke and You’re Currently Waiting to Be Rescued by Your Plumber. 


Hi [Name], my water mains broke so I’ve got to urgently attend to the issue. Hopefully the plumber will arrive soon and can fix the issue quickly (in which case, I might be able to make the end) but you know how these things can be. Let’s catch up another time?

Since it’s not one of the frequently used excuses, people are most likely to fall for it. So make a call and tell them how your place is flooded with water and you need to fix it as soon as possible. Apologize for not making it up to them, but you can’t do anything about it? (Or maybe you can!

Excuse 23 | You Need A Ride to Get There


Hey, would love to come tonight- would you mind picking me up? No pressure if you can’t!

Asking the host for a favor right before they are holding a party is going to result in your favor. That said, there is a little bit of the risk involved because either you will end up making them feel bad or you will actually have to leave your house if they say yes.

Excuse 24 | Extreme Weather 


Hey [Name], I think the snow’s probably going to ruin any chances of me being able to make tonight.

You can only use this one if it’s raining there. And if it is, there is a huge possibility that the other people won’t show up either. Because let’s be honest, who does not want to have a hot mug of coffee on the terrace while watching the rain pouring onto the glass of your windows, making a thud sound and yet so calming? Sorry, I got a bit over-emotional here, but anyways you got what we meant. 

Excuse 25 | Women’s Health  


Hey you! I’ve got a serious case of women’s issues. How about we reschedule?

This excuse is exclusively for ladies and it’s fantastic because nobody asks questions. Relax away.

To effectively use these excuses, avoid any unnecessary long details, and stick to your story. We hope that these excuses will help you get some much needed you time.

At Never the Right Word, our aim is to give you practical examples of how to handle life’s difficult conversations. If you have an awkward situation that you’d like example templates for, request a topic here.   

If you’re interested in further reading, we’ve also included links to our trusted resources and related posts below. To find out more about NTRW and our recommended tools, you can do that here.  

Lastly, if you found this content helpful or want to share your own examples, let us know in the comments. We’d also be delighted if you shared this article and joined us on social media too!

Article by Never the Right Word

Scripts & Templates for Life’s Uncomfortable Conversations. Learn more about NTRW here. NTRW is supported by adverts and affiliate marketing links. For more info, please see our Earnings Disclosure.

This site does not constitute legal, mental, or medical health advice, please consult a competent licensed professional. If you have questions please Contact Us.

Never the Right Word

Never the Right Word

Hi there! I’m Amy, and I’m the person behind Never the Right Word. I’m a designer-by-day who’s fascinated by human psychology; you’ll find me learning about what makes others tick through all types of media and good old-fashioned conversation. Learn more about me here.

In 2019 Never the Right Word was born to fill the gap of ‘how-to’ websites with copy and paste examples showing you EXACTLY what you need to say to steer difficult conversations into positive outcomes.

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