The 10 best calendar apps of 2020

Zapier Editorial Team
Zapier Editorial Team / Last updated December 9, 2019

The calendar app that's right for you depends on your needs and lifestyle. Do you rely on notifications and reminders, or do you find them a nuisance? Do you need to manage a family calendar or one with your coworkers? Do you prefer a minimal look and feel or an app that's jammed full of features?

We considered and tested several dozen calendar apps to find the 10 best that meet a variety of needs. Click on any app to learn more about why we chose it, or keep reading for more context on what makes a great calendar app.

The best calendar apps

What makes a great calendar app?

Calendar apps have two core functions: They show your upcoming schedule and remind you of important events. The best calendars, however, aren't just functional. They give you clarity about how you spend your time, and a few rare finds are even a joy to use.

In looking for the best calendar apps, we considered apps that have the following characteristics:

  • Easy to use. Calendar apps are easy to use when they require minimal clicking and menu exploration. They should be intuitive and not require a lot of tending.
  • Designed with intention. Does the calendar app do what it says it's going to do? And does it do it well? All calendars will show you when your next appointment is, but does it meet its promises for more?
  • Packed with features and customizable. If you're a serious scheduler, power features, such as customizable views and integrations, will help you get the most out of your calendar. For those apps that aren't heavy on features, we looked for customization options that make the app adjust to your style.
  • Simple to share. Sharing features, such as the ability to give other people access to your schedule, can be a huge help. Some calendar apps are more collaborative than others, and some are more suited for home use than office. In the descriptions of the best calendar apps below, we call attention to sharing options when they are front and center in an app.
  • Available for multiple devices. When considering apps for this list, we gave preferences to apps that are accessible on more than one platform. Ideally, you should be able to see your calendar no matter where you are or what device you have on hand.

Best free calendar app

Google Calendar (Android, iOS, Web)

Google Calendar

Much of Google Calendar's popularity comes from the fact that you can create multiple calendars in one place using a Google account, and then port those entries to almost any other online calendar. Google Calendar also works with nearly everything else on the market. You can connect your Google Calendar to not only other calendar apps, but also business apps and services that have calendars as part of their features, such as Trello and Asana.

Color coding for individual calendars makes it easy to see which area of your life an event applies to. You can also show or hide calendars so you can focus on specific types of events. As you would expect from the company that started as a search tool, Google Calendar offers excellent search capabilities. It also integrates with G Suite apps, letting you create a calendar event from Gmail, for example.

When used across an entire organization, Google Calendar gives you the ability to check your coworkers' schedules alongside your own. Inviting others to your calendar is a cinch too. You can choose between sharing an entire calendar or just using the invite option to add people to an event.

Although there's no desktop app, Google Calendar's web app and mobile apps for Android and iOS are enough to keep schedules straight. If you want a more enticing user interface or more robust features, you can always connect Google Calendar to virtually any other app on this list.

Google Calendar Pricing:
Free plan: Yes, with a Google account

Automate Google Calendar with Google Calendar's Zapier Integrations.

Best calendar app for staying organized

Any.do (Android, iOS, Web)

Anydo calendar

Any.do formerly had a separate calendar app called Cal, which it rolled into the namesake app to create one centralized place for your tasks, goals, reminders, and schedule. Now a wide variety of reminders help you stay on top of your agenda, to-dos, and goals.

Any.do's calendar should appeal to people who need tools to help them stay organized, such as location-based reminders, a notification that reminds you to preview what's on your agenda at the beginning of each day, and the ability to add in travel time to any notification before an event. The calendar is also at its best on mobile devices, where it makes good use of the small screen. This makes it easy to stay on top of your tasks on-the-go.

You can connect Any.do to the Apple Calendar app to import existing events. In the month view, all events appear as colored dots, with the color matching whatever colors you use to manage the original calendar. For example, you might keep a birthday calendar in yellow and personal appointments in blue. At the bottom of the screen is a snapshot of the selected day. Open any event to see more information about it.

Any.do pricing:
Free plan: Yes
Paid plan: From $5.99/month (billed annually)

Automate Any.do with Any.do's Zapier Integrations.

Best business calendar app

Microsoft Outlook Calendar (Android, iOS, macOS, Windows, Web)

Outlook Calendar

The most stalwart of calendar apps, Microsoft Outlook Calendar is more of a personal information manager than a place to see your next appointment. The desktop app unifies your calendar, email, notes, tasks, and contacts into one view. Outlook's mobile apps aren't quite so ambitious, but they do at least combine your calendar and email.

Outlook, which is part of Microsoft Office, lets you share calendars with teammates, and that's its real strength. With Exchange Server accounts and the appropriate permissions, team members can view and manage each others' schedules and subscribe to one anothers' calendars. Outlook offers options for how you can view multiple calendars at once: side-by-side or with calendars combined in an overlay view.

If you don't use Outlook within an organization, you might still appreciate the calendar's many features. You can drag and drop an email onto the calendar icon in the navigation menu to turn it into an appointment (available in the Windows app only), or quickly send a meeting request from either email or the calendar. Outlook supports multiple time zone views, too. There's a lot to dig into.

You can get a free online version of Outlook, called Outlook.com, which is more streamlined and has fewer features. Outlook.com has family sharing, so you can add other household members to your account to make your calendar accessible to others. The Mac version of Outlook isn't as robust as the Windows version, but if you like having everything in one place, this is an all-in-one productivity tool to consider.

Microsoft Outlook Pricing:
Free plan: Yes, for Android and iOS
Paid plan: From $5.99/month for Office 365 subscriptions, which include the Microsoft Outlook desktop app

Automate Microsoft Outlook with Microsoft Outlook's Zapier Integrations.

Best free calendar app for Apple users

Apple Calendar (iOS, macOS, Web)

Apple Calendar

Because it's built into macOS and iOS, Apple Calendar is the default place to store calendar entries on Apple devices. Without any real effort on your part, you can keep your calendar up to date across your iPhone, iPad, and Mac, thanks to iCloud. In a pinch, you can also view and update your calendar entries from a web app on iCloud.com.

Apple Calendar allows you to pull in info from other calendars, too, such as Google Calendar, Microsoft Exchange, Yahoo, and any calendar that uses CalDAV. Setting this up is as easy as connecting an email client app to another email account.

Apple's clean and simple Calendar lets you focus on your events rather than the app itself. It's intuitive to use if you're familiar with other Apple apps, with support for drag and drop and Siri integration. Click or tap the plus sign (+) to create a new event, which can include a title, location, reminder, note, and invitees. You can also add a travel time estimate that will be factored into event alerts. As you might expect, this no-frills calendar integrates with Apple devices, so that you see notifications from it in the iOS and macOS notification bars.

Apple Calendar Pricing:
Included with macOS and iOS devices, or via iCloud with an Apple ID

Best calendar app for Linux users

Thunderbird Lightning Calendar (Linux, macOS, Windows)

Thunderbird

Not only is Thunderbird one of the best email apps you can find, it's also a superb calendar. In previous versions of this app, you had to install the Thunderbird Lightning Calendar add-on to have an integrated calendar, but now it's included with the app from the get-go.

Thunderbird gives you a tab for your email, calendar, and tasks. The setup lets you easily hop between communicating, scheduling, and managing what you need to get done. On the calendar tab, you can see a summary of everything on your schedule for today, even if you've paged forward through the months to plan events in the future.

The calendar offers four different views: Day, week, multi-week, and month. It also has a convenient search function with time filters and built-in categories for events, such as "birthday" and "calls." Although there's nothing particularly striking about Thunderbird's calendar, having the whole kit and kaboodle—personal email client, calendar, and task-management app—in one app makes it easy to plan your time and keep your life organized.

While many of the apps on this list have both Windows and Mac versions, Thunderbird Lightning is the best choice for Linux users who want a powerful calendar that runs natively. That said, there's no reason not to give this one a shot regardless of which operating system you're using if it meets your requirements.

Thunderbird Pricing:
Free plan: Yes

Best paid calendar app for Mac and iOS

Fantastical 2 (iOS, macOS)

Fantastical 2

Is it cheesy to call Fantastical 2 fantastic? Probably, but at least in this case, it's not hyperbole. Fantastical 2 has just about everything one could want in a calendar app for iOS and macOS, in addition to an Apple Watch companion.

While it's nice to have the mobile app, Fantastical 2 is at its best on desktop. The app is colorful without being gaudy or overwhelming, and it's easy to use without sacrificing control over your event details. On a Mac, the menu bar app lets you quickly add an event or see what's on your agenda in the coming days. Adding details to your events—such as notes, URLs, invitees, and locations—feels quick and smooth. Fantastical 2 also integrates with the rest of your system to give you a Today view widget, Handoff support, and a share sheet extension that lets you create events from other apps, like addresses in Maps and URLs in Safari.

Fantastical 2 is best known for its natural-language event creation. Start typing "Lunch with Casey at noon at Park Place" and watch as the app parses your words into calendar fields and pulls in relevant information, such as addresses and team members' availability. While $50 is a hefty price to pay for a calendar app, it's worth it if you live in your calendar and want something other than the Apple default.

Fantastical 2 Pricing:
Free plan: No, 21-day free trial available
Paid plan: $49.99 for macOS, $9.99 for iPad, $4.99 for iPhone

Best calendar app for managing multiple calendars

24me (iOS, Android)

Anydo calendar

Organizing your life with multiple apps on a mobile device can be both time consuming and frustrating. What you need is a single mobile assistant, which is exactly what 24me provides. This app delivers a unified interface for meetings and appointments, tasks, and notes.

Sync your Google Calendar, Outlook, Exchange, Yahoo!, and iCloud calendars to see everything in one place. 24me also connects to social networks like Facebook, financial providers like banks, and utility companies. You'll get alerts when bills are due and can pay them in just a few taps (though this functionality isn't available in all territories and works best in the U.S.).

Siri integration lets you use 24me without even opening the app, and a companion Apple Watch app lets you view upcoming appointments on your wrist. 24me is ready to be used with David Allen's popular Getting Things Done (GTD) methodology, or you can just use it as a simple interface for managing your hectic schedule.

24me Pricing:
Free plan: Yes
Paid plan: $5.99/month or $35.99/year to add customization, alerts, labels, and more

Best calendar app for collaborating

TimeTree (Android, iOS, Web)

TimeTree

TimeTree is a collaborative calendar app that guides you in creating useful calendars by trying to understand what it is you're trying to achieve. For example, when you create a new calendar in TimeTree, the app asks you whether it's for personal, family, friends, work, relationship, or group use.

Each option has a descriptor so you can better understand the purpose. For example, the relationship calendar is best when you need to know someone else's schedule, as it's a calendar made for two people to share. The friends calendar, however, comes with features for commenting and discussing plans, such as finding a suitable date for multiple people to meet.

You don't have to limit yourself to only one calendar, however. You can create multiple calendars, and as you do, it can display your events in an overlay, giving you a full picture of what's on your schedule. Color coding for each calendar helps you visually keep track of everything. It also lets you import other calendars, such as those with a list of different national holidays and so on.

TimeTree Pricing:
Free plan: Yes

Best calendar app for families

Cozi (Android, iOS, Web)

Cozi

Family schedules are hectic. Band rehearsal some mornings, soccer games after school, not to mention constantly conflicting appointments. And when is the dog walker going on vacation again? Cozi is designed with busy families in mind, consolidating multiple calendars, to-do lists, and shopping lists in one app. Think of it like the old-school bulletin board and wall calendar hanging in the kitchen, only smarter and pocket-sized.

With Cozi, you create one centralized calendar and give appropriate people access to it, such as family members, nannies, pet sitters, and so forth. Members have a color assigned to them so that when you create an event and indicate who needs to know, their colors appear on the calendar entry. The organizer is accessible through mobile apps for iOS and Android and using a standard web browser on desktop platforms.

The calendar is merely one feature in Cozi, which also has shopping lists, to-do lists, a journal, and messaging features. It's a complete family organizer.

Cozi Pricing:
Free plan: Yes
Paid plan: From $29.99/year

Best calendar app for students and educators

My Study Life (Android, iOS, Web)

My Study Life calendar

My Study Life is a free calendar app designed to meet the unique needs of students and educators. In the educational world, schedules are drastically different from those in the private sector. Students typically follow a semester or term system rather than a quarterly one. They meet for classes on a Monday-Wednesday-Friday schedule, or maybe on Tuesday and Thursdays only, or perhaps their courses alternate on an A/B day setup. If a national holiday falls on a Monday, students sometimes find themselves going to Monday's courses on Tuesday. In short, educational calendars are full of exceptions and unusual circumstances, and My Study Life was created to accommodate them.

The app is available on the web or as a mobile app for Android and iOS. It's not a bad idea to use the web app when first getting started, at least until you've logged all your classes and their timings. Once you get the hang of the app, it does double duty by letting you log assignments and other tasks you need to do, whether it's homework or preparing a lesson plan. You can keep track of your progress on assignments, too, noting how close they are to completion as a percentage. Yet another section of the app lets you keep track of scheduled exams.

My Study Life is free to use, and it's a great choice for students who are tired of calendars that don't deliver what they need.

My Study Life Pricing:
Free plan: Yes


Connect your calendar to other apps you use

As much as you might love your calendar app, no one wants to spend too much time entering details into events and copying them to other places where you need them. A better strategy is to get these types of actions to happen automatically.

With Zapier, you can connect your calendar to other apps and services you use, whether it's email, a to-do app, or even text messages on your phone. Then, you create rules to automate what you want. Here are a few templates to get you started:

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