Google Calendar Hacks: 12 Features To Make Your Day More Productive calendar tips

Updated Dec 5th, 2023 by   Nicolas Zenker

Google Calendar is a popular workplace and personal organization tool. It can help users prioritize and respond to emails, keep track of their daily, weekly, and monthly schedules, and even organize reminders, contacts, and to-dos. It makes sense that if you’re using Google Calendar in your everyday life, spending a bit of time learning about all of its features is a worthwhile investment. 

Google Calendar boasts many functionalities, some you may be familiar with, and some that might surprise you. A well-organized and well-structured calendar can dramatically boost your productivity and efficiency, so it’s critical you get the most out of yours.

To help you out, we’ve brought together this handy list of calendar tips and tricks that will help supercharge your Google Calendar. From importing calendars to facilitating communication with your coworkers and more, we’ll help make sure your calendar is working for you. 

1. How to share a Google Calendar

Sharing a Google Calendar with your coworkers is a quick and easy way to clearly communicate the details of your schedule, all while getting everyone (literally) on the same page. The good news is it’s pretty easy to do:

  1. In Google Calendar, find the “My calendars” section on the left side of the screen.
  2. Find the calendar you want to share, click the More button (three vertical dots), and then select Settings and sharing. 
  3. Under “Share with specific people,” click on Add people. 
  4. Add the person or Google group’s email address to that you want to have access to the calendar. You can adjust their permission settings with the drop-down menu. 
  5. Finally, click Send

And just like that, you’ve figured out how to create a shared Google calendar with your coworkers or anyone else. Note that you can also share a Google calendar with everyone in your organization under the “Access permissions” section. 

2. How to use dark mode in Google Calendar

Using an app or program in dark mode can be a great way to reduce your device’s battery usage — plus, it’s a little bit easier on the eyes. If you’re looking to use Google Calendar in dark mode, here are a few pointers.

When it comes to using the Google Calendar app on a mobile device, you won’t be able to solely turn on dark mode for your calendars. Instead, you’ll need to enable your device’s dark mode in the Settings tab, under Display & Brightness. The app will automatically update to match your device’s theme. 

If you’d like to use dark mode on your desktop or laptop, things are a little bit trickier. The Google Calendar website doesn’t support a native dark mode, so you’ll need to download a browser extension to get the experience. One of most popular and commonly used extensions is Night Eye, which offers a free trial version. Here’s how to install it: 

  1. In your web browser, navigate to the Night Eye website and select the browser that you’re using. You’ll be taken to the correct download page. 
  2. Once the file is downloaded, add the extension to your browser. 
  3. In Google Calendar, select Night Eye from the list of extensions (typically you’ll click on a puzzle icon piece in the upper right corner of your browser). 
  4. Refresh the page, and dark mode will be activated. 

3. How to add the widget to your mobile device

Remember what it was like before you could check the weather on your phone? It’s so incredibly simple we’ve almost forgotten there was a time when figuring out the forecast was more complicated. 

Downloading the Google Calendar app will let you check your calendars on the go when you access the app. But if you’re looking for even more convenience, you’ll probably want to look into getting the Google Calendar widget for your homescreen.

Basically, the widget is a small icon that will stay on your homescreen and show you your upcoming meetings in miniature form — without even having to open the Google Calendar app. Here’s how to set yours up:

  1. On your iPhone or iPad, touch and hold the home screen.
  2. In the top left of the screen, select the Add button (it looks like a plus sign). 
  3. Search for the Google Calendar app, and then select it. 
  4. You can alter the size of your widget by swiping left — make sure to settle on a size that’s legible for you.
  5. Finally, select Add Widget, and then select Done

Congrats! Now you’ll have access to your upcoming meetings and events directly from your home screen. The only downside is you won’t have any excuses for missing one!

4. How to print your Google calendar

There are a number of reasons you might need to print off a calendar, though the most common use is to present it in a meeting or other context where computers won’t be available, or would be awkward to access.

The good news is that printing off a Google Calendar is pretty simple. Follow these steps and you’ll have a physical copy of your calendar in no time:

  1. Open Google Calendar on your computer. 
  2. Select a date range at the top right of the page. Your options will include Day, Week, Month, Year, Schedule, and 4 Days.
  3. At the top right of the page, you’ll click Settings, and then Print.
  4. You’ll be sent to the “Print preview” page. Now’s your chance to change visual details, including font size and color.
  5. Click Print

5. How to export a Google calendar

Exporting a Google calendar can be a valuable tool if you’re working with someone who’s using a different type of digital calendar — whether that’s a contractor, a freelancer, or another company entirely. 

  1. In Google Calendar, locate the “My calendars” section on the left side of the page. 
  2. Find the calendar you’re exporting and hover your cursor over it. Click the More button (it looks like three vertical dots) and then click Settings and sharing
  3. Under “Calendar settings” you’ll choose Export calendar
  4. Your computer will then begin downloading an ICS file of all the events on the chosen calendar.

Now your Google calendar will be accessible as a file that you can send to others, or upload to other calendar services, including AddEvent.

6. How to use color schemes

If you’re ready to take your organizational skills to the next level, color-coding events on your Google calendar might be the next step. A great color coding system can help you more easily keep track of different types of events or tasks, or events associated with different individuals — you could even use different colors to signify how urgent different tasks are!

If you want to change the color of a specific event on your Google calendar, just follow these steps:

  1. Create an event, or select Edit event on a pre-existing event. 
  2. Hover your cursor over Select event color (it looks like a colored circle next to a dropdown arrow) and then click.
  3. Select the color you’d like to give to the event (there are 11 options at your disposal). 

7. How to add the weather to your Google calendar

There used to be a time when adding the weather to your Google calendar was built into the app, and only required that you check a box. After a few upgrades and redesigns, however, it’s no longer so easy to access the weather in your Google calendar. 

You’ll need to use an extension or third-party calendar service to get weather information on your Google calendar. There are a lot of options out there, though we’d recommend Weather Forecast with Icons. To install it, follow these steps:

  1. Go to the app’s website, enter the location you want weather information for, and choose Celsius or Fahrenheit. 
  2. Click Copy to copy the auto-generated URL. 
  3. In your web browser, open Google Calendar. 
  4. Click on Settings (a gear icon in the upper right part of the page). 
  5. Click Add calendar, and then From URL
  6. Next, Paste the URL you just copied and select the Add calendar button.

When you return to your Google calendar, it should now show the weather for each day.

8. How to subscribe to other people’s calendars

Want to easily access multiple calendars to better orient yourself throughout the day? Need to mix your work and home calendars to better keep track of your schedule? Have no fear! The good news is that Google Calendar makes it easy to view multiple calendars at once. 

If you want to view one of your other calendars or even a calendar that belongs to another person or group, you’ll need to subscribe to those calendars. Once you’ve done that, it’s easy to toggle the calendars on and off as you need them. Just follow these steps: 

  1. In Google Calendar, on the left side of the screen, right next to “Other calendars,” click Add and then Subscribe to calendar. If you’ve already been shared on the calendar you’ll get an email confirming this. 
  2. In the “Add calendar” box you’ll enter the owner’s email address, or select one from the drop-down list, and then press Enter

From there, a number of things can happen, depending on if you’ve been shared on the calendar or not. If you have, the calendar will be added to the left side of the screen under “Other calendars.” If you haven’t, you’ll have the opportunity to request access to the calendar. 

9. How to set up recurring events 

If you’ve got a regular or standing appointment with your team members or other coworkers, there’s no need to create a new event in Google Calendar every single time. There’s a simple way to set up recurring events that will save you time and keep everyone on the same page. Just follow these steps:

  1. When creating a new event, open the drop-down menu below the date and time that’s labeled “Does not repeat.” 
  2. Select the recurring meeting options that fit your needs — options include daily, weekly, and annually. You can even choose “Custom” to really personalize the event. 
  3. Click Save, and your event will now be added to your calendar!

10. How to find the best time for a meeting

Ready to set up a meeting or event but worried about finding the perfect time when everyone is available? There’s no need to send out a flurry of emails double-checking with everyone — Google Calendar provides an elegant solution. 

When you create an event, after entering your guests, you can select the “Find A Time” tab to check all of your guests’ schedules at the same time. It’s an incredibly easy way to quickly find out the best and most convenient time for your meeting or event. 

11. How to receive a daily schedule in your email

One of the best ways to guarantee you’re never blindsided by a meeting or deliverable is to check your schedule every day. If you’re looking to automate that process, Google Calendar can easily be set up to send you a daily schedule of all your calendar events via email. 

  1. In Google Calendar, click on the Settings button (shaped like a gear) in the upper right area of the page. In the dropdown menu, select Settings
  2. On the left side of the page, under “Settings for my calendars,” select the calendar you want to receive a daily reminder about. 
  3. Scroll down until you reach a section called “Other notifications.” 
  4. Click on the dropdown menu next to the option titled “Daily Agenda” and then select Email

12. How to leverage a calendar management tool 

Maybe the easiest way to ensure that you’re getting the most out of your Google calendars is to take advantage of an integrated calendar management tool like AddEvent.

AddEvent unlocks even more functionalities to supercharge your Google Calendar experiences — from easily sharing events to collecting RSVPs, and even allowing customers to subscribe to your event calendar. Another key feature is importing your Google calendar into AddEvent to easily share your events with all other calendar platforms simultaneously using the Add to Calendar functionality. 

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While the program is currently open to US-based affiliates only, the benefits are unparalleled. Plus, signing up is a breeze — it’s a free program, and we provide all the resources you need.AddEvent’s Affiliate program is currently accepting new applications at this time — but don’t wait! Apply today while the application window is still open and start earning immediately.

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