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: Calculating an Age On a Given Date.

Calculating an Age On a Given Date

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated October 24, 2015)


Alan is president of the local Little League baseball team and he needs to know the ages of each child on May 1 of each year. He wonders if there is a formula that will return the age on that day.

There are actually a couple of ways you can approach the task. Assuming that the child's birth date is in cell A1, you could use the following formula in most instances:


This formula calculates the date serial number (used by Excel internally) for May 1 in the current year. It then subtracts the birth date in A1 from that serial number. This results in the number of days between the two dates. This is then divided by 365.25, an approximate number of days in each year.

For most birth dates, this formula will work fine. If you want something more precise (the imprecision is introduced by the way in which leap days occur), then you can rely on the DATEDIF function in your formula:

=DATEDIF(A1,"5/1/" & YEAR(NOW()),"y")

This returns the age of the person as of May 1 of the current year. If you want even more detail in the results, try this formula:

=DATEDIF(A1,"5/1/" & YEAR(TODAY()),"y") & " years, "
& DATEDIF(A1,"5/1/" & YEAR(TODAY()),"ym") & " months, "
& DATEDIF(A1,"5/1/" & YEAR(TODAY()),"md") & " days"

Remember that this is a single formula—make sure it is entered as a single line in whatever cell you place it.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (11858) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, and 2013. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: Calculating an Age On a Given Date.

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 4 + 2?

2015-10-26 12:06:58

freddy lemmens

@Ron: that is correct, the function was removed from the list around 2000. Nobody really knows why... but it still works;

@Dennis: try your formula with birthday 1962-03-31, you will notice that the calc is not correct and 1 year off. Datadif is correct, this 1 day can be important fe. in case of HR contracts.

2015-10-26 11:30:22

Dennis Ralph

I have to calculate a players age within our own Over40s Soccer League.
I created a spreadsheet with the following data:
1.....I placed my year end date in cell J7 as '2016-03-31'.
2.....I enter the players ages in cells J8:J70 as ie: '1962-06-15'.
3.....In the cell next to the age cell (K8:K70) I have a formula as: '=+$J$7-J8', which is formatted to Custom > yy and I copy it down the list so the only cell reference that changes is the J8:J70's.

This works great for me. Seems much simpler than all the "fancy formulas" you show in this tip. Seems to me as a bit overkill.

2015-10-26 09:42:47

Ron Wroczynski

if I type in "Datedif" as a formula copying the examples it works fine. But I do not find it in the list of Excel functions in the formulas tab in my Excel 2010. Why is that?

2015-10-24 06:36:58

Parin Thacker

For me in such case, =YEARFRAC() function seems to be the easiest.

2015-10-24 05:01:42

freddy lemmens

Or to calculate someone's age based on todays date:
A2=date of birth
As a separator, use commas (,) in the US or (;) in Europe.

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