Ease farewell sadness with this special elf goodbye letter. Complete with free printable pdf ready for your little ones on Christmas morning. 

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Elf on the Shelf with Goodbye Letter in a Christmas Tree

These little elvish bundles of North Pole fun explode into our children’s worlds each December and spread much Christmas joy.  So it’s hardly surprising that their departure can be tinged with sadness, even with the excitement of Christmas Day almost within reach. 

To help your little one feel reassured that their elf friend also found it hard to say farewell, we’ve created a special Elf Goodbye letter for you to leave out on Christmas morning.  And in typical Jolly Festive fashion, there’s a free printable version ready and waiting to go. 

We’ve also got five extra ideas for how to you help say goodbye to elvish friends, from special Christmas Eve cuddle rules to kindness challenges.  Scroll on down for all the details.  

Saying Goodbye Is The Hardest Thing To Do

Elf Goodbye Letter

The elf goodbye letter is the perfect way to let your little one know that elfie was thinking about them as they headed home, and to reassure any worried children that their elf will be back next year for more fun. 

Leave the letter out on Christmas morning for your children to discover as they look around to see if Santa ate his snack!

Elf toy with arms above head

But before you panic on how you’re going to fit in yet another job at this busy time of year, don’t worry!  We’ve created an elf goodbye poem, especially for you. 

The free printable version is just below, ready for you to use. 

But we’ve included the poem here too in case you’d like to adapt it or handwrite it to use for your little one.

Travel With Elves!

Going away whilst you have an elf visitor? We share ideas for how to travel with elf on the shelf and keep the magic intact.

Elf Farewell Poem

It’s always so hard to say goodbye to dear friends

But alas this year’s countdown has come to an end.


I need to return to my home in the snow

With all Santa’s elves now away I must go.


Promise me not to be too sad I’ve gone

A year passes swiftly. It won’t be that long


Before we’re together again for more fun.

I’ll be excited to hear all that you’ve done.


For now, Merry Christmas & A Happy New Year

(And remember tonight that sleigh bells you might hear!)

Elf goodbye letter pdf

Download this free goodbye poem for your little one and leave it out on Christmas Day from your elf visitor.

More Like This?

Looking for other festive activities to enjoy?  Whether it’s at home or out and about, we’ve got a whole host of ideas to keep you in the Christmas spirit!

Elf Goodbye Letter Printable

Printable Elf Letter

Download your copy here.

Scroll down for more ideas on how to sweeten your elf’s departure if you anticipate a sad little one at home.

Distraction Techniques!

Other Elf On The Shelf Goodbye Ideas

If you’re in need of a few other ideas for how your elf could say goodbye, check out our five suggestions below.  These could easily be added to the Elf Goodbye Letter or used as an alternative.

1. A Special Christmas Eve Cuddle Rule

Why not add an extra ‘rule’ that your little ones are granted special magic on Christmas Eve so they can give elfie one big hug before they leave.

That little bit of physical contact may help your child to feel that they’ve really connected with elfie and had a special cherished moment!

2. Leave Out An Extra Elfish Treat

How about leaving a little treat out for your Elf as well as Santa on Christmas Eve?  Deciding what snack your elf might enjoy could keep your little one distracted and feeling that they have looked after their festive visitor.

A Few Treat Ideas From The Jolly Festive Kitchen

No Churn After Eight Ice Cream

No Churn After Eight Ice Cream

Enjoy the luscious blend of minty freshness and rich dark chocolate with this divine creamy homemade no churn After Eight ice cream recipe.

Christmas Pretzel Bites

Christmas Pretzel Bites

An instant festive hit, these Christmas Pretzel Bites are the salty-sweet Gonk perfection for your party table!

3. Prepare A Farewell Letter Or Picture

Encourage your little one to write a letter or draw a special picture for elfie, letting them know how much they’ve enjoyed the time together.  By helping your little one find a voice for any sadness they may be feeling, it’ll help them process it.

Last Minute Christmas Eve Box Idea

Looking to join in with this new tradition but don’t have much time or budget? We share some simple DIY Christmas Eve Box ideas so you can create your own quickly and cheaply!

4. Deliver A Special Christmas Day Gift From Elfie

What about if your elf delivers a gift for your little ones on Christmas Day too?  Take one of the smaller treats from the stocking presents and position it with your elf goodbye letter.  Knowing that Elfie gets in on the gift-giving as well could soften the farewell slightly and is another way of reassuring your little one that their elf friend cares about them and knows what they like.

5. Set A Kindness Challenge

Perhaps your elf could set your little one a challenge as they leave?  Maybe they have to fill a sheet of paper with special ‘kindness stickers’ to show Elfie upon their return, or to send to Santa at the end of January (if next December seems too far away!).  Having a task to focus on may help your little one feel connected to their festive friend during the rest of the year and give a visual target to encourage continued thoughtful behaviour.

We do hope that this elf goodbye letter is useful.  Please do let us know if you use it or any adaptation suggestions you have.  Do you do anything special for your little one as Elfie heads home?

Looking for elf-spiration?   Check out our other articles –> here.

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