Embedding Fonts in Excel

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated March 21, 2020)
This tip applies to Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003


If you are familiar with Word and PowerPoint, you may have noticed that both programs allow you to embed fonts in documents or presentations. This is very handy, particularly if you feel that someone else receiving your document or presentation may not have your font on their system.

Unfortunately, Excel does not allow you to embed fonts in workbooks. Word has an intimate relationship with something in concrete reality: the printed page. Almost everything it does is in relationship to how something will be printed, and Word queries the printer driver many times during an editing session in order to represent information accurately onscreen. PowerPoint, as well, makes at least some reference to what can be printed or displayed onscreen.

Excel, on the other hand, is not all that interested in printing because a worksheet is really just a representation of a set of quantities and relationships--things which are fundamentally abstract. In fact, it wasn't until Excel 95 that Excel's default font was changed to Arial (a TrueType font) instead of MS Sans-Serif (a non-scalable screen font whose printing vagaries are legion).

If you really must embed fonts to make your worksheet appear properly, there is one thing you can try: Embed the Excel worksheet in a Word document in which the desired font is also embedded. You will need to make sure, of course, that the font you've chosen is embeddable (some are not). When someone else opens the document, they may see the information as you intended. Of course, they will need to use Word instead of Excel for viewing the information.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (1969) applies to Microsoft Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

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