Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Excel 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Excel, click here: Combining and Formatting Times.

Combining and Formatting Times

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated February 25, 2015)

1

Brenda has an Excel worksheet with two columns: A and B. In column A are times, without any indication of whether they are AM or PM. Instead, column B contains either AM or PM, as appropriate for the cell just to the indicator's left. Brenda would like to combine these two columns into one column and have the result formatted as military time. Thus, if A14 contains 05:11 and B14 contains PM, she would like the combined column to contain 17:11.

There are very easy ways you can get the desired results in a column, but the formula you choose depends on the way the times are stored in column A. If the times are actually time values, then the following formula in column C will work just fine:

=IF(B1="pm",A1+0.5,A1)

The formula works because it adds half a day (0.5, which is an Excel time value for twelve hours) to the time in column A if the indicator in column B is "pm". It will work whether the indicators in column B are lowercase ("pm") or uppercase ("PM"). It won't work, however, if you have any times in column A that are past noon, such as 12:15. In that case, you'll need to modify the formula a bit:

=IF(B1="pm",IF(A1<0.5,A1+0.5,A1),A1)

If the time stored in column A are actually stored as text, then you'll need to do a conversion, but it is extremely easy to do:

=VALUE(A1 & " " & B1)

Regardless of which formulaic approach you use, you'll need to format the cells containing the formulas so that they show times in military (24 hour) format. You can pick one of the pre-defined time formats (shown in the Number tab of the Format Cells dialog box) such as 13:30 or 13:30:55, depending on whether you want seconds displayed or not. You could also define a custom format such as HH:MM, H:MM, HH:MM:SS, or H:MM:SS.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (12040) applies to Microsoft Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Excel (Excel 2007 and later) here: Combining and Formatting Times.

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. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Backing Up Custom Dictionaries

The custom dictionary used in Excel contains the information you decide relative to spelling. After a while, you might start ...

Discover More

Sticking with the Dashes

By default, dashes don't "stick" to the text that follows them. Here's one way around this normal formatting convention.

Discover More

Changing the Return Address Location

When Word creates envelopes for you, there may be times that you don't like where it places the return address. Repositioning ...

Discover More

Solve Real Business Problems Master business modeling and analysis techniques with Excel and transform data into bottom-line results. This hands-on, scenario-focused guide shows you how to use the latest Excel tools to integrate data from multiple tables. Check out Microsoft Excel 2013 Data Analysis and Business Modeling today!

More ExcelTips (menu)

Rounding Time

Need to round the time in a cell to a certain value? There are a couple of ways you can do this with a formula.

Discover More

Checking for Time Input

Need to know if a cell contains a time value? Excel doesn't contain an intrinsic worksheet function to answer the question, ...

Discover More

Calculating Elapsed Time with Excluded Periods

When using Excel to calculate elapsed time, there can be all sorts of criteria that affect the formulas you would otherwise ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 8Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 0 + 7?

2012-08-18 17:22:30

Michael Avidan - MVP

In many occasions, like this one, the IF statement can be eliminated and the following formula will return the same result.

=A1+(B1="pm")/2

Michael Avidan
“Microsoft®” MVP – Excel
ISRAEL


This Site

Got a version of Excel that uses the menu interface (Excel 97, Excel 2000, Excel 2002, or Excel 2003)? This site is for you! If you use a later version of Excel, visit our ExcelTips site focusing on the ribbon interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.