Copying Dates a Year Into the Future

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated September 14, 2019)

1

Juan has a column (column A) of dates in the year 2018. He wants to copy that range of dates into another worksheet in the same workbook. He needs to make the dates all the same, except for the year, which should be 2019.

There are quite a few different ways you can go about accomplishing this task. One way is to use a formula to create the new dates. Assuming the original dates are in column A (as Juan noted) and that the worksheet is named Original Dates, you could use the following formula in cell A1 of a different worksheet:

=DATE(2019,MONTH('Original Dates'!A1),DAY('Original Dates'!A1))

You can then copy the formula down as many cells as desired. If you prefer, you can use an even shorter formula:

=EDATE('Original Dates'!A1,12)

Remember that when you use a formulaic approach, Excel may not automatically format the result to look like a date. That's easy enough to fix; just apply the cell formatting you want.

There is an important difference between the two formulas that deal with how they resolve what happens if the original date is leap day (February 29). In the case of the DATE function, Excel treats the new date as March 1. Thus, if the original date was February 29, 2016, then the result of the DATE formula would be March 1, 2017. (It is 2017 because the formula is "hardwired" to use that year.)

In the case of the EDATE function, February 29 is rendered as February 28. Thus, February 29, 2016, becomes February 28, 2017. (It is 2017 because the EDATE function is told to use a date 12 months later than the original.)

Whichever formula approach you use (and there are several others), once they are in place you can select all the formulas, press Ctrl+C to copy them to the Clipboard, display the Home tab of the ribbon, click the down-arrow under the Paste tool, and select to Paste Values. This does away with the formulas and leaves you with actual dates in the cells.

Speaking of copying and pasting, that brings up another way to get the dates to the new worksheet:

  1. Select the original range of dates.
  2. Press Ctrl+C to copy them all to the Clipboard.
  3. Switch to the new worksheet and select the first cell (A1) where you want the dates pasted.
  4. Press Ctrl+V to paste the dates. They should be exactly the same as on the original worksheet and the range you just pasted should be selected.
  5. Press Ctrl+H. Excel displays the Replace tab of the Find and Replace dialog box. (See Figure 1.)
  6. Figure 1. The Replace tab of the Find and Replace dialog box.

  7. In the Find What box put the year you want to change (2018).
  8. In the Replace With box put the year to which you want to change (2019).
  9. Click Replace All. Excel lets you know how many replacements it made.
  10. Close the Find and Replace dialog box.

Excel is smart enough to know that you want to replace years, and in so doing it "reevaluates" the resulting dates. For most dates this is not a problem, but it is for leap days. If the original date is February 29, 2016, it is changed to February 29, 2017. Since that is an invalid date, it is parsed by Excel.

There is another approach that was suggested by several ExcelTips subscribers, as follows:

  1. Select the original range of dates.
  2. Press Ctrl+C to copy them all to the Clipboard.
  3. Switch to the new worksheet and select the first cell (A1) where you want the dates pasted.
  4. Press Ctrl+V to paste the dates. They should be exactly the same as on the original worksheet.
  5. In an unused cell, enter the value 365.
  6. Select the cell used in step 5.
  7. Press Ctrl+C to copy the value to the Clipboard.
  8. Select the range of cells you pasted in step 4.
  9. Display the Home tab of the ribbon.
  10. Click the down-arrow under the Paste tool and then choose Paste Special. Excel displays the Paste Special dialog box. (See Figure 2.)
  11. Figure 2. The Paste Special dialog box.

  12. Select the Add radio button.
  13. Click OK.
  14. Format the selected cells to use whatever date format you desire.

At first glance, it appears that all your dates are updated to be one year later than they were originally. In many instances this will be correct but, again, leap days will mess you up. If the original dates are in a year that contains a leap day, adding 365 to them doesn't mean they will be a year later because the leap year contains 366 days. Thus, it is best to use one of the other methods described in this tip.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (13328) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Office 365.

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 2 + 9?

2019-12-11 12:59:48

kim kauer

HELP ! I copied your AWESOME formula to have an excel workbook with a tab for each day of the year.
It is almost perfect, I just need the DAY too for the year 2020 and beyond -
Trying to create a daily plumbing schedule.


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