How to Set up an Out of Office Reply in Gmail and Canned Replies?

Published by John on Last Updated On :

How to Set up an Out of Office Reply in Gmail


Picture this scenario. You’re on that much-needed vacation enjoying yourself with your family. However soon, you find your phone buzzing with work-related email notifications. You are certainly not in a position to respond to those emails. So, how do you tell your colleagues that you cannot reply to them promptly? Well, if you know how to set up an out-of-office reply in Gmail, you can easily inform your staff and co-workers that you’ll not be replying to their emails for a specific period. It’s a very useful feature that most people aren’t aware of. So, in this article, we’ll let you know how to set up out of replies or vacation responders in Gmail.

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How to Set up an Out-of-Office Reply in Gmail on Desktop and Mobile?

It’s easy to set up this feature on both desktop and mobile. You can follow the stepwise instructions below depending upon the device you use the most.



Navigate to your Gmail inbox. Now, use these points to know how to set up an out-of-office Gmail on your desktop or browser.

  1. Tap the cog icon. It’s present on the top-right part of the page.
  2. After that, choose ‘Settings.’
  3. Go down and tick the box beside ‘Vacation Responder on.’
  4. Now, you can set up your automatic reply dates. Tick the ‘Last day’ box.
  5. Type in the last day you wish to send automatic replies. But these steps aren’t compulsory for those who aren’t very clear as to when they’ll be back.
  6. Now, input your out-of-office response.
  7. This is the automatic response that your colleagues will get when they email you while you are not there.
  8. Lastly, tap ‘Save changes.’

NOTE – Check the box beside the ‘Only send a response to people in my contacts’ box. Do it if you don’t want your out-of-office message to be sent to everyone who sends you an email.



You can follow a similar process to set up the out-of-office reply on your Android or iPhone. Follow the points below to set this feature up.

  1. Launch the Gmail app on your phone.
  2. Now, click the three-line menu icon present on the top-left part of the screen.
  3. Go down and click ‘Settings.’
  4. Choose the account you wish to configure your out-of-office reply. Your email account will appear at the screen’s top.
  5. Now, under the ‘General’ section, click ‘Vacation Responder.’
  6. Now click the slider beside Vacation Responder to enable it.
  7. Set the automatic reply dates. If you wish to manually disable automatic replies when you come back to Office, choose ‘None’ for the ‘Last Day.’
  8. Now, input your out-of-office message.
  9. Lastly, click ‘Done’ on your Android phone. iPhone users should tap ‘Save.’

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Steps to Enable Canned Responses for Auto Replies

Now you know how to set up an automatic out-of-office reply in Gmail. But knowing that isn’t enough. You must also know how to configure a message that will function as your automatic reply. The points to do so are mentioned in detail below.

  1. Firstly, head over to
  2. Once you are there, hit the gear icon and choose ‘Settings.’
  3. After that, hit ‘Advanced’ in the menu.
  4. Then choose ‘Enable’ which is beside ‘Canned Responses (Templates).
  5. After doing that, click ‘Save Changes’ present at the bottom. You’ve enabled canned responses. Now you can compose another email by hitting the ‘Compose’ button.
  6. Enter a message that will be automatically sent to anyone who messages you while you are on vacation.
  7. Once you are dots, tap the three dots on your email window. It will launch the email options.
  8. Here, choose ‘Canned Responses’ followed by ‘New Canned Response.’
  9. Now, another window will open up. Here, name the response.
  10. After entering a name, select ‘OK.’

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How To Use Filters to Make More Targeted Auto Replies in Gmail?

Do you want to learn how to set up a Gmail out-of-office reply that’s tailored for particular people? Well, Gmail filters allow you to do this with ease. But before you use the filter, it’s important to make an email template with which you can reply. Follow these steps to make such a template.

  1. Compose a new email containing the message you wish to reply with.
  2. Now, choose the ‘More’ menu in the lower-right part of the window.
  3. Select ‘Templates’ followed by ‘Save draft as a template.’
  4. Now, choose ‘Save as new template.’
  5. In the pop-up window that appears, give your template a name.
  6. Now, return to Gmail settings.
  7. Choose ‘Filters and Blocked Addresses.’
  8. Go down to the bottom, and choose ‘Create a new filter.’
  9. In the ‘Create filter’ form, input the email address of the person you wish to auto-reply to in the field of ‘From.’
  10. When finished, choose ‘Create filter.’
  11. Now, in the Create Filter window, tick the box beside ‘Send template.’
  12. Choose the template you created earlier.
  13. Now, choose the ‘Create filter’ button. That’s it. Your new filter and automatic reply are active. You can now send the particular person an out-of-office reply with this template.

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How to Turn Off Out of Office Replies in Gmail?

Using the automatic out-of-office reply feature is appropriate till you are out of the office or in a place where there’s no internet connectivity. When you come back to work, you must turn off the feature.

When the feature is on, there will be a banner at the top of your Google account, which will display your vacation response’s subject. When you want to turn off the vacation response, hit ‘End Now.’ Turning off the feature is as simple as that.


Wrapping Up

After going through the article, you’ll no longer wonder how to set up an out-of-office reply in Gmail. The vacation reply you set will begin at 12 AM on the day you go away. It will end at 11:59 PM on the last date. Through this feature, your colleagues and co-workers will easily find the reason for your absence. If you need any more help with setting up this feature or any other element of Gmail, seek the help of Gmail support experts.


Written By


John is a Technical Writer at Email Support, has 10 years of experience, and is an expert in Email and Cloud Computing. His specialty is writing about the Email clients such as Outlook, Yahoo, Verizon, SBCGlobal, Gmail, Apple Mail, AOL, WildBlue, and others.

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John is a Technical Writer at Email Support, has 10 years of experience, and is an expert in Email and Cloud Computing. His specialty is writing about the Email clients such as Outlook, Yahoo, Verizon, SBCGlobal, Gmail, Apple Mail, AOL, WildBlue, and others.

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