Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016. 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: Keyboard Shortcut for Comments.

Keyboard Shortcut for Comments

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated December 31, 2016)


Larry often adds comments to cells in his worksheets. He wonders if there is a keyboard shortcut for adding those comments.

Normally you would insert a comment by selecting the cell you want, displaying the Review tab of the ribbon, and then clicking on the New Comment tool, in the Comments group. If you prefer to not take your hands off the keyboard, however, Excel does provide three different ways you can insert comments.

The first two methods are actually keyboard equivalents for invoking the New Comment tool. You can use either of these:

  • Alt, R, C
  • Alt, I, M

Note that you don't need to hold down the Alt key as you hit the keys following—you simply need to press the Alt key to let Excel know you are going to access tools through the keyboard. The first approach goes directly to the New Comment tool. The second approach is provided for compatibility with older, menu-based versions of Excel.

The third method to insert a comment is to simply press Shift+F2. This shortcut produces the exact same result as the previous two—it opens a comment box in the current cell. (If one already exists in the cell, then it is opened; if one does not exist, one is added and opened.)

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (12317) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: Keyboard Shortcut for Comments.

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 five more than 3?

2017-01-20 05:40:57

Dave Smith

@ Chris G.
In Excel 97 I tap the ESC key twice to return to the spreadsheet.

2017-01-19 13:52:16

Chris G.

Um, that's great. But now how do I get out of the comment without using the mouse?

2016-12-31 15:25:50

Lanier Dodson

Or simply right click the cell and click on "Insert Comment" in the drop-down menu.

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