The beginning of the film takes place during the Christmas season.
The New York Times says, "Ms. Ephron and her associates create a make-believe world so engaging that "Sleepless in Seattle" is finally impossible to resist. Both Mr. Hanks and Ms. Ryan bring substance to their roles." Rolling Stone calls it "sublime". The Guardian gives it 4 out of 5 stars.
Empire Online gives it 4 out of 5 stars and calls it "sweet and touching". Roger Ebert says it was "so warm and gentle I smiled the whole way through." Rotten Tomatoes has an audience score of 75%.