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One of the common problems many users encounter with Excel is incorrectly entering dates. People seem to get confused about entering dates. Should they enter dd/mm/yy or mm/dd/yy? Do they enter slashes or dashes or dots? And what was the date of the third Thursday in September last year anyway?

When a date is not entered in the correct format Excel will not recognize it as a valid date. This often means you can not perform calculations with the 'so-called' dates. It also means any charts, Pivot tables etc based off the dates will not be valid.

What you really need is Pop-up Excel Calendar, or a date picker running right within Microsoft Excel!

Pop-up Excel Calendar is an Excel COM add-in program that allows you to easily enter dates into Excel with a few mouse clicks.

For a quick example, click your mouse on a cell in which you must enter a date. An in-cell icon button appears. Click the icon button to display the calendar. Click the date you want to enter and you are done!

If you like, you can even have the calendar display automatically as soon as a date-formatted cell is selected. For more information, please see displaying calendar automatically.

In Excel 2007 and the above versions, by default Pop-up Excel Calendar creates a separate tab Pop-up Calendar in the Ribbon-based user interface. The tab contains 5 buttons, as detailed below.

pop-up Excel Calendar main screen in Excel 2007

  • Calendar!

    Displays the pop-up calendar manually. Generally you don't need this button to display the pop-up calendar, as the in-cell icon button is shown automatically when you click a date cell.

  • Settings

    Displays the Settings window, in which you can control how the pop-up calendar works for you.

  • Disable

    Disables the pop-up calendar. If this button is pushed, the in-cell icon button won't be shown even if you click a cell that is formatted as date. Click the button again to enable the calendar.

  • Help

    Opens the help document.

  • About Pop-up Excel Calendar

    Copyright and license information. You will need this button to enter you registration code/license key to unlock the program.

pop-up Excel Calendar (Excel date picker) main screen with steps

As you can see from the figure above, in Excel 2003 Pop-up Excel Calendar provides a toolbar, which consists of 5 buttons, corresponding to the 5 command buttons in Excel 2007, Excel 2010 and Excel 2013.