Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 2007, 2010, and 2013. If you are using an earlier version (Excel 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Excel, click here: Moving Custom Formats to Number Formatting Categories.

Moving Custom Formats to Number Formatting Categories

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated March 29, 2014)


Neil knows how to create custom formats in Excel. He has created a custom format that displays dates exactly as he wants them displayed and he would like this custom format to show up in the Date category (Number tab of the Format Cells dialog) rather than being left in the Custom category. Neil wonders if there is a way to do this.

The short answer is that no, there is no way to do this. The formats that appear in the non-custom categories are hard-coded by Excel. The only thing you could do to make the application of the custom formats faster (if that is your goal) is to use a macro that applies the format. The following is an example of a macro that applies a custom format to whatever cells are selected:

Sub MyNumberFormat()
    Selection.NumberFormat = "_(* #,##0_);_(* (#,##0);_(* ""-""??_);_(@_)"
End Sub

You can assign the macro to a shortcut key or to the Quick Access Toolbar, thereby making it very easy to apply.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (8844) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, and 2013. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: Moving Custom Formats to Number Formatting Categories.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He  is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...


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What is 1 + 5?

2014-04-01 06:41:59


You can also create a custom cell style. This would require no macro code.

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