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Written by Jacky Chou

15 Excel Shortcuts For Dates You Need To Know

Key Takeaway:

  • Excel shortcuts can save considerable time: With simple keyboard combinations, you can perform various date-related tasks quickly and precisely, instead of going through multiple menu options.
  • Shortcuts for date formatting make it easier to manage data: Formatting dates to specific formats can help streamline data analysis, enable easier sorting and filtering, and make the data more presentable. Shortcuts for changing date format and customizing it to meet your needs can simplify the process immensely.
  • Shortcuts for date calculation are useful in various applications: Whether you need to calculate the number of days between two dates, add days or subtract them, or find the difference between dates, Excel shortcuts can help you perform these tasks efficiently.

Are you struggling to manage multiple deadlines? Excel shortcuts can help you quickly navigate and work with dates. You’ll no longer have to worry about missing important tasks – let these 15 shortcuts be your date-saving guide.

Basics of Excel Shortcuts

Excel Shortcuts Made Easy: A Professional Guide

Mastering Excel shortcuts is essential for anyone who wants to navigate and process data with ease. Here’s a simple guide to the basics that will set you on the right track.

  1. Accessing the ribbon and menus: Press Alt key to select any menu or option and use the arrow keys to navigate.
  2. Copy, cut and paste: Use Ctrl+C, Ctrl+X and Ctrl+V to copy, cut and paste data, respectively.
  3. Creating a new workbook: Use Ctrl+N to create a new workbook.
  4. Saving a workbook: Use Ctrl+S to save your workbook.
  5. Undo and redo: Use Ctrl+Z and Ctrl+Y respectively to undo and redo any action.
  6. Inserting rows and columns: Use Ctrl+Shift+Plus sign (+) to insert rows and columns.

To make the most of Excel shortcuts, keep practicing and using them as often as possible. Don’t hesitate to explore and discover other shortcuts that can enhance your productivity.

Excel shortcuts can save you time and effort. However, as a beginner, it’s essential to master the basics before moving to advanced shortcuts. Try “15 essential Excel shortcuts for deleting rows and columns” to level up your Excel game.

Using good keyboard skills is a big plus in today’s fast-moving world. Back in the day, a friend of mine who was an accountant struggled with Excel because he was short of time, and his typing skills were poor. However, by taking Excel classes and practicing, he improved his skills, reduced processing time, and never worked extra hours again.

Basics of Excel Shortcuts-15 Excel Shortcuts for Dates You Need to Know,

Image credits: by James Jones

Shortcuts for Date Formatting

Mastering date formatting in Excel requires knowing the right shortcuts. For an effortless experience, this section on ‘Shortcuts for Date Formatting’ has sub-sections. These include:

  1. Changing Date Format
  2. Entering Current Date
  3. Entering Current Time
  4. Copying Dates
  5. Auto-filling Dates

They offer quick solutions.

Shortcuts for Date Formatting-15 Excel Shortcuts for Dates You Need to Know,

Image credits: by Joel Duncun

Changing Date Format

Using the correct format for dates is crucial in Excel. Here’s how to modify date display and switch between date formats effortlessly:

  1. Highlight the cells to be formatted.
  2. Right-click on the highlighted area and select ‘Format Cells’ from the dropdown menu.
  3. Choose the ‘Number’ tab, click ‘Date’ from the categories pane.
  4. Select your preferred date type and hit OK to apply changes.

Additionally, you can use shortcut keys like Ctrl+1 for quick access to the ‘Format Cells’ dialog box and Alt+W+F for changing date types in no time.

Notably, different countries have varied formats for representing dates. For instance, MM/DD/YYYY denotes a typical format used by Americans while Britons typically use DD/MM/YYYY.

Fun fact: The origins of formatted calendar systems are attributed to ancient civilizations such as Mayans and Egyptians.

Don’t worry about remembering today’s date, let Excel do it for you with just one shortcut!

Entering Current Date

For your convenience, here’s how to input the current date like a pro in Excel.

  1. First, move your cursor to the cell where you want to input the date.
  2. Next, press ‘Ctrl’ + ‘;’. This will display today’s date in the cell.
  3. If you need to input both today’s date and time, press ‘Ctrl’ + ‘Shift’ + ‘;’ instead.
  4. Finally, press ‘Enter’.

To enter current date automatically by shortcut:

  1. Press ‘Ctrl+;+Space‘, Excel will enter only the current day within days format.

For an added bonus:

Utilize this handy tip to always keep the current date updated without having to manually edit it each day. Simply head over to =TODAY(), with or without specific formatting included for some added flair!

You know it’s true love when you start using Excel shortcuts to impress your date with your time management skills.

Entering Current Time

To insert the current time in Excel, follow these simple steps:

  1. Locate the cell where you want to enter the current time.
  2. Press "Ctrl + Shift + ;" on your keyboard.
  3. Press "Enter".
  4. The current time will appear in the cell.

Additionally, you can also use formulas like "=NOW()" or "=TIME(NOW())" to display the current time. However, be aware that these formulas will continuously update as the system clock changes.

Interestingly, the use of electronic computing spreadsheets originated in 1962 with LANPAR, a language developed at Dartmouth College by Richard Mattessich. The development of Microsoft Excel took place much later, with its first release being in 1985.

Copying dates is like copying a bad habit, it’s easy to do but hard to get rid of.

Copying Dates

To quickly duplicate dates, there are several Excel shortcuts you can use. One way is to select the cell with the date and then drag the autofill handle over adjacent cells to replicate the date format. Another option is to use the Ctrl+D shortcut to fill down or Ctrl+R to fill right. These shortcuts can save you time and effort when working with dates in Excel.

Additionally, you can copy and paste dates between cells, but be aware of any formatting changes that may occur as a result. For instance, if you copy a date from a cell formatted as “mm/dd/yyyy” into a cell formatted as “dd/mm/yyyy“, the date may appear incorrectly in the new cell.

It’s important to note that when copying dates containing calculations, such as those involving days, weeks or months, it’s best to use Excel’s Paste Special feature for accuracy.

According to Microsoft Support, when pasting dates using Paste Special, you should select “Values and Number Formats” for consistency between cells. This ensures that both the values and formatting for each cell are copied accurately.


Don’t waste time manually entering dates, let Excel do the work for you with these auto-filling shortcuts that’ll have you feeling like a time-traveler.

Auto-filling Dates

Dates can be auto-filled in Excel using a convenient spreadsheet feature that saves time and effort, allowing you to quickly enter and sort data. Here’s how to use the Auto-filling Dates feature:

  1. Select a cell or range of cells you want to fill with dates.
  2. Type the starting date in the first cell (e.g., 01/01/2022).
  3. Click and drag the cell’s bottom-right corner down to fill the remaining cells with dates.

When Auto-filling Dates, keep in mind that Excel automatically increments by one day for each new cell filled. You can also customize your date range by selecting multiple cells before dragging or filling, which allows you to set an interval between dates.

To make this process even faster, use shortcut keys like ‘Ctrl + ;’ to insert today’s date or ‘Ctrl + Shift + ;’ to insert the current time.

Pro Tip: When filling a date range containing weekdays only (i.e. no weekends), use ‘Ctrl + Drag’ instead of just dragging from the bottom-right corner of a selected range. This will prevent weekend dates from being included in your selection.

Saving time on date calculation in Excel? Ctrl+; is as quick as picking up the check on a first date.

Shortcuts for Date Calculation

Master date calculation in Excel with shortcuts! No more wasting time adding or subtracting dates, or figuring out the difference between them. This section on ‘Shortcuts for Date Calculation‘ covers all you need to know for easier date calculations. Sub-sections include ‘Adding Dates‘, ‘Subtracting Dates‘, and ‘Finding the Difference Between Dates‘. Quick and easy!

Shortcuts for Date Calculation-15 Excel Shortcuts for Dates You Need to Know,

Image credits: by Yuval Duncun

Adding Dates

To perform Date Calculation in Excel, there are several ways to Add Dates. This includes adding days, months or years to an existing date. Here’s a guide on how to do it:

  1. Select the cell where you want the result to be displayed.
  2. Type the formula ‘=’ followed by the initial cell where the date is present.
  3. Add ‘+’ and then enter the number of days, months or years that you want to add.
  4. Press ‘Enter’ to get the desired output.
  5. To replicate the formula for multiple cells, drag the fill handle across all other cells where you want to apply this formula.

When doing so, make sure that you follow this process correctly because incorrect syntax can lead to unexpected results.

A crucial point to note here is that if you add a positive value after ‘+’, it will add days/months/years, whereas if you use a negative value, it will subtract days/months/years from your original date.

Pro Tip: To keep formatting consistent across multiple cells while performing Date Calculations accurately, convert all cell entries into formatted dates by using Ctrl + Shift + # (hash) for shortcut formatting in Windows.

Subtracting dates may feel like time travel, except without the cool outfits and the DeLorean.

Subtracting Dates

When approaching a task concerning the difference between two dates, there are multiple approaches to take. Here is an easy-to-follow guide:

  1. First, select the two cells containing the dates to be subtracted.
  2. Next, enter the subtraction formula using the minus sign.
  3. The answer will appear in years, which can be easily converted by multiplying by twelve for months or 365 for days.
  4. To exclude weekends in your calculation, apply the NETWORKDAYS function.
  5. If you need your answer displayed in a specific format, use custom formatting.

It’s helpful to note that Excel reads dates as numeric values representing a number of days since January 1st, 1900. Moreover, date calculations can vary based on regional settings, so it’s important to ensure your worksheet is set up correctly.

For even more flexibility when working with dates, it’s advisable to look into using VBA coding or add-ins like Power Query or Power Pivot which offer more advanced date functions.

To optimize date calculations and avoid errors such as incorrect year conversions, it could also be beneficial to input data into ISO-8601 format (YYYY-MM-DD). By doing so, you can quickly perform date-related tasks without worrying about discrepancies caused by region-specific formats.

With these tips in mind, you can handle any date-related task efficiently and accurately in Excel. Who needs a relationship when you have Excel to calculate the time you’ve been single?

Finding the Difference Between Dates

When it comes to finding the duration between two dates, there are a variety of options available. One such option is using Microsoft Excel to calculate the difference between dates using various shortcuts.

For instance, you can use the DATEDIF function in Excel to calculate the number of days, months or years between two given dates. Alternatively, you can subtract one date from another by simply applying a subtraction formula.

To further simplify this process of calculating date differences, you can also create a table in Excel with columns for start date and end date, as well as a column for calculating the difference automatically.

Another useful trick is to assign names or labels to specific dates in Excel by selecting the cell containing each respective date and then entering a name in the top bar. This allows for easier calculation of differences between particular events or milestones.

Pro Tip: Keep in mind that when working with dates in Excel, it’s important to ensure that they are formatted correctly according to the conventions of your locale or region. This will prevent any issues with calculations and make your work much easier overall.

If only there was a shortcut for finding a date in real life as efficient as these in Excel.

Other Useful Shortcuts for Dates

Excel and dates? Master it! Use the basic shortcuts and more. Streamline your workflow and make your time count. Convert dates to text, customise date formats, and navigate through them.

Other Useful Shortcuts for Dates-15 Excel Shortcuts for Dates You Need to Know,

Image credits: by David Woodhock

Converting Dates into Text

Dates can be converted into text using Excel shortcuts. These shortcuts allow you to input dates in various formats and convert them into specific textual formats, such as month names or weekdays. Simply apply the appropriate formula and the date will be automatically converted into the desired text format.

To convert dates into text, use Excel’s TEXT function with custom formatting codes that correspond to the desired textual representation of your date values. For instance, “MMMM” denotes full month names; “ddd” represents abbreviated weekday names, while “MM/DD/YYYY” denotes month/day/year formatting. Using these formatting codes alongside the functions allows swift conversion of dates into text formats.

What’s more, you may need to adjust or customize some of these codes depending on specific contexts and how you want data presented. It is essential to understand which formatting code applies best in different scenarios for optimal results.

When working with Excel, converting dates into specific textual formats can help streamline data processing significantly and make it more user-friendly across various audiences. Utilizing these shortcuts can dramatically reduce time-consuming tasks that might otherwise consume a lot of effort and prove frustrating.

Why settle for a boring date format when you can spice it up and customize it like a trendy latte order?

Customizing Date Formats

When it comes to Excel, customizing date formats can be helpful in displaying the information you need in a specific way. Here’s how you can customize your date formats in Excel.

  1. Select the cells containing dates that need formatting.
  2. Press Ctrl + 1 to open the Format Cells dialog box.
  3. Select ‘Custom’ from the Category list.
  4. In the Type box, enter a format code. For example, if you want to display dates as “dd-mmm-yyyy,” type “dd-mmm-yyyy” into the Type box.
  5. Click OK to apply the new format.

It’s worth noting that there are many different types of custom formats you can use beyond just displaying dates. For example, you could use custom formats to display timestamps or financial data in a specific way.

Don’t miss out on all the advantages of customization! Apply these simple steps and unlock endless possibilities of presenting your data precisely and effectively.

Time flies when you’re navigating through Excel shortcuts for dates.

Navigating through Dates

When working with dates, it is essential to have excellent navigation skills. Maneuvering through a multitude of dates can be daunting, but there are ways to make it more manageable.

Here is a 3-step guide on navigating through dates:

  1. Use shortcuts – Excel has several shortcuts that allow you to navigate quickly through dates. For example, Ctrl + Arrow up/ down takes you to the current month’s first or last date. Similarly, Ctrl + Shift + Arrow left/ right selects all data till the end of the row.
  2. Utilize filtering – Filtering data works well when working with extensive lists of dates. You can use data filters and time filters to narrow down your selection and efficiently navigate through your file.
  3. Apply sorting – Sorting data is an excellent way of prioritizing your selections as it reorganizes your list based on specific criteria. This feature helps in easily navigating through months and years.

Additionally, custom formatting date will assist in easy navigation throughout the Excel file.

Here are some suggestions for better navigation:

  1. Color-code – Assign colors to identify specific types of dates such as holidays or milestones.
  2. Freeze panes – Freezing headers in large files help keep track while scrolling.
  3. Use named ranges – Name cells containing dates for easy access.

Benefits of Using Excel Shortcuts for Dates

Incorporating Excel shortcuts for dates can lead to improved efficiency and productivity in document processing. Using the right combination of keys can save time and minimize errors in data entry. Here are three benefits of using Excel shortcuts for dates:

  1. Quick Access: Excel shortcuts simplify the process of entering dates and eliminate the need for manual entry. This makes it faster to access essential information, especially when dealing with large datasets that require frequent updates.
  2. Increased Accuracy: Excel shortcuts ensure that dates are entered correctly. This reduces the chances of errors that might lead to incorrect data analysis, misinterpretation of data trends, and inefficient management of records.
  3. Improved Flexibility: Excel shortcuts allow for customization of date formats, making it easy to align with specific regional or organizational requirements. It is possible to format dates in various ways, including day-month-year, month-day-year, year-month-day, and more.

Additionally, incorporating 15 essential Excel shortcuts for deleting rows and columns can further improve productivity in document processing. Using shortcuts to delete columns and rows can simplify the document cleanup process and create more space for additional data input.

Interestingly, Microsoft has been making efforts to improve the efficiency of Excel, and the use of shortcuts is just one of the many features that have been introduced. The history of shortcuts in Excel dates back to the 1990s, and it is a testament to the long-lasting impact of adopting new techniques in document processing.

Benefits of Using Excel Shortcuts for Dates-15 Excel Shortcuts for Dates You Need to Know,

Image credits: by Adam Duncun

Five Facts About 15 Excel Shortcuts for Dates You Need to Know:

  • ✅ Excel has built-in shortcuts for formatting dates, such as CTRL + SHIFT + # to format as a date, and CTRL + SHIFT + @ to format as time. (Source: ExcelJet)
  • ✅ You can quickly jump to the current date in a worksheet by pressing CTRL + ; (Source: Microsoft Support)
  • ✅ The F4 key can repeat your last action for quickly formatting dates, such as changing the date from October 1st to October 01. (Source: Excel Campus)
  • ✅ You can use the TEXT function along with custom date formats to create your own date display formats in Excel. (Source: Spreadsheeto)
  • ✅ Excel also has shortcuts for inserting the current date and time, such as CTRL + ; and CTRL + SHIFT + ; respectively. (Source: Excel Easy)

FAQs about 15 Excel Shortcuts For Dates You Need To Know

What are the 15 Excel shortcuts for dates you need to know?

The 15 Excel shortcuts for dates you need to know are:

  • Ctrl + ; (semicolon) – Inserts current date
  • Ctrl + Shift + ; (semicolon) – Inserts current time
  • Ctrl + : (colon) – Inserts current time and date
  • Ctrl + Shift + # – Applies date format to selected cells
  • Ctrl + Shift + @ – Applies time format to selected cells
  • Ctrl + [ – Selects all cells that contain the same value as the active cell
  • Ctrl + Shift + # – Applies date format to selected cells
  • F4 – Repeats the last action taken (e.g. applying a date format)
  • Ctrl + Shift + ~ – Displays all formulas in a worksheet instead of their calculated results
  • Ctrl + ; Then Spacebar – Inserts current date and moves the cursor to the next cell in the same row
  • Ctrl + ; Then Enter – Inserts current date and moves the cursor to the next cell in the same column
  • Ctrl + ; Then ‘ – Inserts current date and leaves the cursor in the same cell
  • Ctrl + Shift + : (colon) – Inserts current time and date and leaves the cursor in the same cell
  • Ctrl + Home – Moves the cursor to the top of the worksheet
  • Ctrl + End – Moves the cursor to the bottom-right corner of the used range in the worksheet

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