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Does Google provide any documented, official recommendations about how to format an email that will easily import the event into a user's Google Calendar?

Let's say that I want to send an email about an event to a Gmail user. I might be sending this email using Outlook, Gmail, mailx, etc. The recipients are using Gmail.

I know this email can be formatted in a way so that Gmail can easily import this event into Google Calendar. Google describes this feature at Automatic event recognition in Gmail, and at Help articles › Access options › Other Google products › Gmail.

However, this feature doesn't always work.

I've tried many different formats, placed different text in different email bodies, in the subject line, etc. Sometimes they work, sometimes and don't.

  • Sometimes there is a "Add to Calendar" link on the right side of the Gmail page.
  • I can also go to the menu "More: Create Event". This will bring me to a Google Calendar page to create the event. Sometimes the fields are automatically populated with information from the email, but often these fields are all blank.

Here are some examples:

One with a location and day:

Meet me at the circus this Thursday

Date, time and location:

Meet me at the Circus at 2198 University Ave, Berkeley, CA on Aug 10, 2011 at 3:00PM

Event, date and location labelled as such:

What: Meet at the Circus
Where: 2198 University Ave, Berkeley, CA
When: Aug 10, 2011 at 3:00PM

Are there any recommendations or guidelines about how to format these emails so that they are automatically recognized by Google Calendar?

Is there a difference between 'normal' Gmail vs. Google Apps?

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I have a feeling its not working anymore. I use to see the option to create events based on the contents of an email which worked really well but I no longer see the option... – OrangeBox May 3 '12 at 6:56
@OrangeBox : The "Add to Calendar" button works for me, but the "More: Create event" does not. – Stefan Lasiewski May 7 '12 at 4:06
up vote 7 down vote accepted

I have had limited success with the following format:

Subject: My test event

Email body says:

This is my test event!

When: May 7, 9-10AM
Where: 123 Main Street, Berkeley, CA

Using the keyword "Location" instead of "Where" seems to work also.

In Google Calendar, this will populate the Subject, the body and the event time and the event location (The field labeled "Where").

I have been using the above format with my personal Gmail account, and my institution's Google Apps account. It usually works with the "Add to Calendar" button, and with the "More: Create event" menu option.

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Nice to see you coming back with your results many months after! – ComputerLocus May 7 '12 at 16:35

There is no way. The "Create Event" button just fills the description of a new event with the body of the email and the title is filled with the subject of the email.

I personally have never seen my events be filled automatically other then that.

share|improve this answer
I can fill subject, description, event start and end times, and the location by using certain keywords in the email. Google is working on this, and it has changed in the last 6 months. – Stefan Lasiewski May 7 '12 at 3:58
@StefanLasiewski Interesting I could not get it to fill it using your templates. Maybe they are still working on it then and slowly rolling new features out. – ComputerLocus May 7 '12 at 16:34
Looks like my template doesn't work with 'Create Event', but it does work with the 'Add to Calendar' button. However, 'Add to Calendar' only appears on some screens. It seems that Google has two features which perform similar functions. – Stefan Lasiewski May 7 '12 at 18:33
And yes, Google does roll out features to different groups of users at different times. I think we have all seen that. – Stefan Lasiewski May 7 '12 at 18:34
Well not, much that we can do now to solve this further as it seems to be more of an internal issue. If you really want try to get in contact with Sarah (Link). She is the community manager for GMail. – ComputerLocus May 7 '12 at 19:37

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