How to Save as a PDF in Excel: The Ultimate 2024 Guide

Saving a document as a PDF in Excel might seem like a daunting task, but it’s actually quite simple. Whether you’re looking to share a document without the risk of others editing it or you need to ensure that your layout looks the same no matter who opens it, PDF is the way to go. In under a minute, you can turn your spreadsheet into a PDF file. Just follow these straightforward steps, and you’ll have a PDF ready to share with anyone, anywhere.

Step by Step Tutorial: How to Save as a PDF in Excel

Before diving into the nitty-gritty, it’s important to note that saving your Excel file as a PDF will allow you to preserve your document’s layout and make it easily shareable. You won’t have to worry about compatibility issues, and the recipient won’t be able to alter the contents.

Step 1: Open Your Excel Document

Open the Excel file that you want to save as a PDF.

Opening your file is, of course, the first step. Make sure you’ve got all your edits done and that you’re ready to convert it into a PDF format.

Step 2: Navigate to ‘Export’

Click on the ‘File’ tab in the top-left corner of Excel, then select ‘Export’ from the sidebar.

When you click ‘Export’, you’ll see different options for how you can save your file. For our purposes, we’ll be focusing on the PDF option.

Step 3: Choose ‘Create PDF/XPS’

Under the ‘Export’ options, click on ‘Create PDF/XPS’.

This is where the magic happens. By choosing ‘Create PDF/XPS’, you’re telling Excel exactly how you want to save your document.

Step 4: Customize Your Save Options

In the dialog box that opens, choose where you want to save the file and adjust any settings like the file name, optimization, or whether to publish a specific selection of your document.

You have a few choices here, like optimizing for standard (which is good for print) or minimum size (which is better for publishing online).

Step 5: Click ‘Publish’

Once you’re ready, click ‘Publish’ to save your Excel file as a PDF.

After you click ‘Publish’, Excel will convert your document to a PDF and save it in the location you specified. And that’s it – you’re done!

After completing these steps, your Excel file will now be saved as a PDF document. You can find it in the location you chose during the save process. This PDF can now be shared easily, and you can rest assured that your document’s format will be preserved, no matter who views it.

Tips for Saving as a PDF in Excel

  • Before saving, double-check your document for any errors or formatting issues.
  • Consider whether you need your PDF to be optimized for print or for online viewing, as this will affect file size.
  • If you’re only looking to save a particular part of your spreadsheet, you can choose to publish only that selection.
  • Remember that once a document is saved as a PDF, it cannot be edited like a typical Excel file.
  • Save your original Excel file in addition to the PDF, just in case you need to make changes in the future.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I save multiple Excel sheets in one PDF?

Yes, you can save multiple sheets in one PDF. Just select the sheets you want to include before going through the save process.

Will my hyperlinks still work in the PDF?

Yes, if you have any hyperlinks in your Excel file, they will generally still function in the PDF.

Can I password protect my PDF?

Yes, Excel offers the option to password protect your PDF during the save process.

What if I only want to save a portion of my Excel sheet as a PDF?

You can select the specific area of your sheet that you want to save as a PDF before going through the save process.

Is there a size limit for the PDF file created from Excel?

There isn’t a size limit per se, but the more data you have, the larger your PDF file will be. Optimize for minimum size if file size is a concern.


  1. Open your Excel document.
  2. Navigate to ‘File’ and then ‘Export’.
  3. Choose ‘Create PDF/XPS’.
  4. Customize your save options.
  5. Click ‘Publish’ to save as PDF.


And there you have it! Saving as a PDF in Excel is a task that anyone can master with a little practice. It’s a valuable skill that comes in handy whether you’re in the business world, academia, or just organizing personal data. PDFs are universally accessible, secure, and an excellent way to preserve the integrity of your documents. Plus, they’re easy to share and print, which makes your work more portable and professional-looking.

Remember to keep your original Excel files in case you need to make future edits, and always double-check your work before saving it as a PDF. Whether you’re a seasoned Excel user or a newcomer, following these steps will ensure your spreadsheets are ready for any audience. So the next time someone asks you how to save as a PDF in Excel, you’ll be the go-to expert. Keep practicing, keep learning, and don’t hesitate to explore more of Excel’s robust features to streamline your work and maximize productivity.

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