Add travel time appointments in Outlook

Articles in the "Outlook Travel Time Appointments" series

  1. Add travel time appointments in Outlook [This article]
  2. New form for creating travel time appointments in Outlook

I like having travel time appointments in my calendar so that my free/busy accurately reflects that I am unavailable, but also so that I am reminded with enough time that I need to leave. I used to use an add-in from Instyler (no link since the site is no longer active) that allowed me to add travel to and/or from appointments to a selected calendar item, but it doesn’t work with Outlook 2013. So I chose to write a macro several years ago to do it. Like my attachment rename macro, when someone asked about using it in a newsletter, it gave me an opportunity to fix the main limitation in my use case: multiple accounts.

The original code leveraged the Applicaton.CreateItem() method, which creates the item in the default folder of the respective item type (olAppointmentItem, in this case). But I have long had two Exchange accounts in my profile, work and personal. I couldn’t get it to create the appointment item in the selected calendar. So I figured out how to open a particular calendar based on the folder path of the selected calendar.

The macro works against single-occurrence appointments and meetings. (Working with recurrences is messy.) There are actually three subroutines and one function. Two of the subs are for indicating which type of travel appointment to create, to or from. The third sub is for actually creating the appointment item, and the function is for opening the target calendar. I modified the ribbon for appointment items to add a button for creating a “travel to” appointment and a button for creating a “travel from” appointment. Each will prompt for how long the travel time should be, defaulting to 30 minutes. The travel to appointment sets a reminder, but the return travel appointment does not. It also uses the subject of the selected item to construct the subject of the travel time appointment. Paste these four code blocks into the VBA editor and then you can assign your added buttons to the CreateTravelToAppointment and CreateTravelFromAppointment subroutines.

2 thoughts on “Add travel time appointments in Outlook

  1. Hi Scott,
    Thanks for posting this! I have Outlook for Mac 15.34 and it doesn’t appear to have access to a VBA editor in this updated version. I can’t seem to find a workable macro to create travel time anywhere. Do you know how of a solution either using MS Excel VBA editor to ‘talk’ to Outlook, or via Automator or Applescript (or some other route my digging hasn’t found?)

    Million-million thanks in advance!

  2. Outlook for Mac 2016 has given up on VBA and it will not be returning. Only Word, PowerPoint, and Excel are getting the VBA Editor. I don’t do much with Mac to know if there is an alternative method, such as a modern add-in to provide that functionality. I can see an add-in being a workable solution. Perhaps I will explore that option for my own edification. If I do and it actually works, I will let you know.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *