How to Export Your Gmail Contacts

Export your address book to Outlook CSV, Google CSV, or vCard format

What to Know

  • In Google Contacts, select More > Export > Contacts and choose the appropriate format.
  • You can export the entire list or only certain groups.

This article details how to export your Gmail Contacts list for use in other accounts and applications. The instructions apply to the web version of Gmail and across all browsers.

Export Your Gmail Contacts

Your address book isn't tied to one Gmail address. You can use it with another Gmail account or a desktop email program such as Outlook, Mozilla Thunderbird or Yahoo Mail. To export your full Gmail address book:

  1. Open Google Contacts. The easiest way to do that is to visit or use the apps menu at the top right of Gmail to choose Contacts.

    Google Apps menu
  2. In the left panel, select More to display additional options.

    Google Contacts page
  3. Select Export.

    Google Contacts with more expanded
  4. To export an entire address book, select Contacts. Select the drop-down arrow to choose a Google Contacts group.

  5. Choose an export format:

    • The Outlook CSV format exports all data and converts names to the default character encoding.
    • The Google CSV format exports all data and uses Unicode to preserve international characters. Some email programs such as Outlook do not support Unicode.
    • The vCard format is an internet standard that is supported by many email programs and contact managers such as OS X Mail and Contacts.
    Export Google Contacts
  6. Select Export.

  7. Download the file (named Contacts) to your Desktop. You can rename the file anything you want, like gmail-to-outlook.csv (for the Outlook CSV format), gmail.csv (for Google CSV) or contacts.vcf (for the vCard format).

Contacts Automatically Added by Gmail

Your list and file of contacts may be large because Gmail adds new contact entries to your address book when you reply to an email or forward it to a new address. These new automatic entries are found under Other contacts in Gmail Contacts.

To prevent Gmail from adding new addresses to your Contacts automatically:

  1. Go to Gmail and select the Settings gear icon in the top right corner of the page.

  2. Select See all settings.

    Gmail settings menu
  3. Go to the General tab.

  4. In the Create contacts for auto-complete section, select I'll add contacts myself.

    Disable automatic contact addition on Gmail
  5. Select Save Changes at the bottom of the page.

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