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How to create Google Calendar events from a Google Sheets spreadsheet

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How to create Google Calendar events from a Google Sheets spreadsheet

By Krystina Martinez · December 3, 2020
The Google Sheets and Google Calendar logos

It's a pain to create calendar events in bulk, but for things such as event planning or event tracking your team's out-of-office time, it's a job that has to be done.

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You can save yourself time by using Zapier to automatically create Google Calendar events from a Google Sheet. This is especially handy when you need to add events to Google Calendar in bulk or teammates are adding events to your calendar or a shared one.

With a single Zap—what we call our automatic workflows—you can automatically create Google Calendar events whenever a new row is added to a Google Sheet.

We'll walk you through how to automatically create Google Calendar events from Google Sheets with a Zap—our word for an automated workflow. Click the Use this Zap button below, and follow along the steps to set it up.

Here's how to set it up:

  1. Create your spreadsheet in Google Sheets (and make sure to sign up for Zapier if you haven't already). 

  2. Connect your Google Sheets account and customize your trigger.

  3. Connect your Google Calendar account and customize your calendar event.

  4. Test your Zap and turn it on.

Zapier lets you automatically send information from one app to another, helping you reduce manual tasks. Learn more about how Zapier works.

Before you begin

If you don't have a spreadsheet already created, make one in Google Sheets and be sure to label your columns. This will be important when you set up your Zap. Be sure to have separate columns for the start date, start time, end date, and end time. Populate your spreadsheet with a few rows of information if it's empty—you'll use that data in Zapier to test your Zap. 

If you don't have real information to use, you can enter a sample submission using information you will easily recognize. For example, instead of typing in random characters, use fictional characters so you don't confuse your test with a real submission. For our example, we're going to be collecting time off requests to create a shared calendar of our team members' time out of the office.

A Google Sheet with columns labeled for start and end dates and times, the reason for the time off, and the name of the employee.

Connect Google Sheets

Click on the Use this Zap button above to get started, which will take you directly to the Zap editor. This is where you create and customize your automated workflows.

You'll need a Zapier account to use the workflows in this piece. If you don't have an account yet, it's free to get started.

In the Zap editor, you set up your trigger step first. A trigger is an event that starts a Zap. You'll be prompted to connect your Google Sheets account. If you've connected it before, select your account from the dropdown menu.

A screenshot of the Zap editor. The dropdown menu lists existing Google Sheets accounts that have already been connected to Zapier. A red box points to the option for adding a new account.

If it's your first time connecting your Google Sheets account to Zapier, or your account isn't listed, click on +Add a New Account. You'll need to give Zapier permission to access your account. 

Once you've connected your account, click Continue.

For each app you connect, Zapier will ask for a general set of permissions which allows you to be flexible with your Zaps. The only actions Zapier takes on your app accounts are those a given Zap needs to accomplish what you've set up.

Customize your trigger

Next, you need to tell Zapier which spreadsheet and worksheet, if applicable, you want to trigger your Zap. 

Under the Spreadsheet field, click on the dropdown to select your Google Sheets file. Then, click on the dropdown under the Worksheet field to select a specific Worksheet. If you don't have multiple worksheets within a single file, it will usually be Sheet1.

Alt text: A screenshot of the Google Sheets step in the Zap editor. The dropdown menu under the Worksheet field only shows one sheet.

Click Continue.

Test your trigger

Now it's time to test our trigger. Zapier will find an existing row from your Google Sheet to use as sample data. This information will be used in later steps to finish building the rest of our Zap. Click Test Trigger. 

A screenshot of sample Google sheet information in the Zap editor. Information matching the row from our spreadsheet is shown..

If your test information looks correct, click Continue. If something doesn't look right, or if Zapier can't find a row in your sheet, go back to the previous step and double-check that everything is correct.

Connect and customize Google Calendar 

Next, we'll customize the action step. An action is an event a Zap performs after it is triggered.

The template has already pre-selected our App and Action Event, so go ahead and click Continue.

A screenshot of the action step in the Zap editor. Google Calendar is selected as the app and Create Detailed Event is selected as the action event.

Next, connect your Google Calendar account. If you've connected it to Zapier before, click on the dropdown menu to select your account. If your account isn't listed, click +Add a New Account and give Zapier permission to access your Google Calendar account. When you're done, click Continue.

Customize your calendar event

Next, we'll customize how we want our Google Calendar event to appear. 

Click on the dropdown under Calendar to select the specific calendar you want Zapier to create an event in. For example, if you have a team calendar separate from your personal calendar.

The Summary field is the main calendar text that appears in any Google Calendar event. Click on Enter text or insert data. You can type in text, which will appear the same every time your Zap runs. If you'd like to use row information from your Google Sheet, select a Google Sheet field from the dropdown menu.

A GIF illustrating how to add text and map fields from Google Sheets in Zapier. Fields from your spreadsheet appear in a dropdown menu so that you can choose which ones to feature as you set up your calendar event.

This is called field mapping. When you map a piece of data—such as a contact name—what you see in the editor is a placeholder. This placeholder data will only be used by our Zap when we test it. Once the Zap is turned on, real data from Google Sheets (or any app you select) will be used when your Zap runs.

Learn more about field mapping in our Zapier quick-start guide.

Next, fill out the Description field with any text or Google Sheets fields you'd like.

A screenshot of text and a field from Google Sheets mapped in the Description field. It reads "OOO -" and then shows an oval shape with the Google Sheets logo and information pulled from the spreadsheet.

Under Start Date & Time, select the fields you'd like to use from your Google Sheet from the dropdown menu. You can select more than one option. Do the same for the End Date & Time field.

A screenshare of field mapping multiple Google Sheets options in one field. This example shows selecting the start date and start time.

Customize the remaining options how you like, for example, if you want reminders. When you're finished, click Continue. 

Test your Zap and turn it on

Now it's time to test our Zap to make sure it works. Zapier will create a Google Calendar event using information from our Google Sheet. 

You can skip this test if you'd like by clicking Skip Test located at the top-right corner. However, you should test your Zap to make sure your calendar event is created correctly. Click any of the test buttons to continue.

A screenshot of the test action step in the Zap editor. An arrow points to the Skip Test option, while a red box highlights the test buttons.

If the test was successful, you'll see a message like this.

A successful text message in the Zap editor. The preview window shows the calendar information that was created.

Open up Google Calendar and find your calendar event to ensure it looks correct. If you're happy with everything, turn on your Zap by clicking Turn on Zap or using the on/off slider in the editor. 

A screenshot of a gray slider button in the OFF position.

Your Zap will now automatically create Google Calendar events every time you add a new row to Google Sheets. 

Have questions? You can read about solutions to common problems in our help documentation or feel free to contact us.

For more ways to automate your apps with Zapier, we recommend:

This piece was originally published in September 2017 and written by Carlin Sack. It was substantially updated by Krystina Martinez in December 2020.

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Krystina Martinez picture

Krystina Martinez

Krystina Martinez is a writer on Zapier's content marketing team, based in Dallas, Texas. When she's not working, you can find her sewing, exercising, or watching anime and gymnastics.

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