Combine text with a date or time

Suppose you want to create a grammatically correct sentence from several columns of data for a mass mailing or format dates with text without affecting formulas that use those dates. To combine text with a date or time, use the TEXT function and the & (ampersand) operator.

Example

The example may be easier to understand if you copy it to a blank worksheet.

How to copy an example

  1. Create a blank workbook or worksheet.

  2. Select the example in the Help topic.

    Note: Do not select the row or column headers.

    Selecting an example from Help

    Selecting an example from Help

  3. Press CTRL+C.

  4. In the worksheet, select cell A1, and press CTRL+V.

  5. To switch between viewing the results and viewing the formulas that return the results, press CTRL+` (grave accent), or on the Formulas tab, in the Formula Auditing group, click the Show Formulas button.

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A

Data

Billing Date

6/5/10

Formula

Description (Result)

="Statement date: "&TEXT(A3,"d-mmm-yyyy")

Combine text in a formula with a date (Statement date: 5-Jun-2010)

=A2&" "&TEXT(A3 "mmmm d, yyyy")

Combine text and date from different cells into one cell (Billing Date June 05, 2010)

=TEXT(A3,”mmm-dd-yyyy”)

Converts the date in a cell to text and displays in the specified “mmm-dd-yyyy” format. If you then create a custom number format “Billing Date: “@ and apply this format to the cell that contains this formula, the cell will display the following: Billing Date: Jun-05-2010.

Note: You can copy the number format code used in a cell into a formula. Select the cell, and then on the Home tab, in the Number group, click the arrow, click More, click Custom in the Category list, select the custom format that you want in the Type box, and then copy the contents.

Function details

The TEXT function requires two arguments (that is, items between its parentheses). The first argument is a value, such as a date or a number. This value is converted to a text value. The second argument, format_text, is a special string that Excel recognizes and uses to display the converted text value in a format that you specify. In the example above, the date 6/5/10 is converted to text and then is displayed in two different formats: “d-mmm-yyyy” (resulting in 5-Jun-2010) and “mmmm d, yyyy.” (resulting in June 5, 2010).

For more information, see TEXT function.

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