How to import multiple vCards (.vcf files) into Gmail or Outlook at once

In this article we will look at how to go about importing multiple vCards, also known as .vcf files, or other contacts into either your Gmail account or Outlook account in one go. Note that I will be using Gmail’s Export tool to create the required csv file that will then be able to import into Outlook. The whole process shouldn’t take that long and is fairly simple to complete, so don’t be put off by the wall of text below.

Scenario:

You decide to export all of your contacts from your old email account, (in my case it was Yahoo! email)  and wish to import them to a new email account, such as Gmail or Outlook. The contacts though are vCards, and a lot of them. Then you run into the issue of not being able to import multiple vCard’s at once to either Gmail or Outlook. Instead, you have to import them one-by-one as Gmail and Outlook don’t allow you to batch import multiple .vcf files. This can be pretty infuriating as vCards can contain a ton of useful information for your contacts such as the name and address information, phone numbers, e-mail addresses, URLs, logos, photographs, and audio clips. Now what if you want to import all of your contacts (that are all in .vcf format) to Gmail or Outlook at once without resorting to paid software?

Solution:

Merge all of your vCards into one .vcf file via the command prompt in Windows and then just import that file to Gmail. For Outlook we will export a CSV friendly file from Gmail. To do this, you will first need to place all the .vcf files into a folder to the root of your C:\ Drive. Where you actually save it isn’t that important, but the command lines that I will be using will assume that the file resides in C:\ so you may need to adapt your commands if you choose to store it somewhere else. In my example I have named the file MyContacts. Note this is a step-by-step tutorial so if you know your way around the command line you can skip some of this.

Now open up a command prompt by hitting the Windows Key+R

Now type cmd and hit OK

run cmd

Now type cd C:\MyContacts and hit Enter. This will make sure the directory is pointing to the root of the C :\Drive

cmd1

Now type copy /B *.vcf all_in_one.vcf and hit Enter.

cmd3

This will immediately start to merge the multiple .vcf files into one file called all_in_one.vcf containing all of the information. Once it has finished (a few seconds) you should see 1 file(s) copied.

cmd4

Close the command prompt by either typing exit and hitting Enter or just hit the Red X at the top

Now open up the MyContacts file in C:\ and check that it has created your file. It will be the largest file there.

finished making one vcf file

Now lets import your contacts into Gmail. Open your Gmail account and click on the drop-down arrow on the word Gmail and select Contacts

select contacts button

When in the Contacts window select the drop-down box on the More tab and choose Import

select import contacts

This will open the Import Wizard. Hit Choose File and navigate to your C:\ drive to where your MyContacts folder is and select the all_in_one.vcf file.

select all in one vcf file for import to gmail

Your contacts will now be imported to your Gmail account.

done

 

That’s it for importing into Gmail. Now what about Outlook? Well, to get around this, I then exported my contacts from my Gmail to a .csv file that Outlook would accept. This is made very simple using Gmail

Click on the drop-down box on the word Gmail and select Contacts

select contacts button

Now you are back in familiar territory. However this time we are exporting, so click on the drop-down box on the word More and choose Export. You can see that I have already pre-checked all of the contact boxes I wished to export. You don’t have to do this as the Export Wizard will allow you to choose which contacts to export.

export to csv for outlook

The Export Wizard will now present you with some options. Which contacts do you wish to export and in which format? As we are exporting our contacts to Outlook, select the Outlook CSV format. If you are wanting to import your contacts from Gmail to an Apple address book or another application (except a Google account) choose the vCard format. Hit Export to begin.

select csv or other formats

Once you hit Export, Gmail will output a copy of the contacts you chose to export to a .csv file to your default download area (in my case I have this set to my desktop as it makes it easier)

Now it’s time to export the newly created .csv file containing the contacts to Outlook. In my case I am using the desktop client for Outlook 2007

Open Outlook and go File>Import and/Export

import export

Select Import from another program or file

choose import from another program file

Choose Comma Separated Values (Windows)

comma separated values windows

Now browse for the .csv file containing your contact information that Gmail created. I elected to not import duplicate items (contacts) but that is up to you.

file chosen

Now Outlook will want to know which folder the information will be stored in. As this is contacts, save it to the Contacts folder.

save to contacts

Now hit Finish and you are done.

hit finish

I hope this has helped. Thank you to l33tstr33t for his or her article for the tip on how to create a single vcf file via the command line.

  • Tigran Keshishyan

    I tried these steps. Everything worked, except when imported into Gmail, it created one contact (last person on the list) with all phone numbers under that person. Any suggestions?

    • Ankur Sharma

      i am also facing the same problem, any help

  • Euan Howden

    Very clear and concise step by step instructions – what made it so easy to follow for me were the screen grabs at each step of the way – especially the command console section.
    Thanks a bunch!!

    • Herbert

      Thank for it tip! It´s great help!

  • Sapvik Pramay

    Try demo version of SysTools vCard Importer software in free of cost to import vCard files to any version (97 to 2010) of MS Outlook.

  • Sameed Ahmed

    Thanks

  • Rod

    Thanks for your clear instructions. It solved my problem perfectly, although I found the import tag in google in a different place.

  • Sasi

    I tried these steps. Everything worked, except when imported into Gmail, it created one contact (last person on the list) with all phone numbers under that person. Any help on this?

    • Ankur Sharma

      same problem, any suggestions

  • Krishna Chalapathi.

    Its really very helpful and saved lot of time….

  • Mario

    Thank a lot. 100 % useful.

  • Dan

    Its really very helpful, you save me

  • Juan

    Thanks a lot! You saved me!, happy holidays!

  • JACJK

    Thanks man !!!
    Extremely helpful !!!

  • Contact Master

    Awesome, saved me bags of time! Thanks!

  • Prathamesh Shinde

    saved a lot of time amigo !! Gracias

  • eran

    Thanks! work like a magic !

  • Pingback: How To Import Your Yahoo! Email & Contacts To Gmail()

  • perfectfate

    line of code was great!

  • AM

    thank you very much, god bless you

  • My fair point

    It’s been long since i properly used MS-DOS “copy” command. Thanks for the nicely explained help.

  • Theo

    It works perfectly! Thank you very much.

  • Surajit

    Thanks a Lot. This trick is very useful

  • Ankur

    Thanks! lovely piece of information

  • Muhammad Othman

    Problem solved. Thank you. Been trying to copy contact from Samsung Kies, save to .csv won’t copy the information properly, only .vcf would, but then this problem of not able to copy-multiple .vcf. Thanks

    • http://techfleece.com/ Richard Gailey

      Glad to have helped.

  • Arriaga

    Helpfull, muchas muchsas gracias

  • Paulik Áron

    Great guide, thanks a lot!

  • vinay bhate

    thanks a lot

  • mau

    thank you so much. everything worked just fine.

  • Sagar Ikhankar

    Really Thanks from bottom of my heart… this is first time .. I found… Just awesome ..

  • Veibha

    Thanks a lot!! saved me a lot of time

  • Damian Cilia

    Very useful. Thanks so much!! Grettings from Argentina.

  • Nandan

    awesome!!! you have helped me a lot.. was gonna do it one by one, saved my efforts!!! :)

  • rushi

    thank you so much it’s rely

    helpful for me

  • DM

    It worked, I now have all my contacts synchronized. Thank you very much

  • Chris

    Worked a treat and saved me loads of time. Many Thanks.

  • imranjpr

    worked for me , thanks for sharing such a useful info

  • khjhjk

    The file is not being created…followed all the steps correctly but when i go to the file where i have stored all my contacts i do not see a all_in_one file
    please help

  • Gurudev

    Excellent and everything worker. Great work done and Tons of Thanks. Thank you so much

  • Diana Idrissi

    Thank you so much, you are so clear and explicit!!

  • Usama

    Thanks alot. It really helped and after 6 months almost I was able to transfer all my contacts to Iphone finally.. Thanks once again

  • Himel

    Perfect!! Thanks a lot….. Really helped…

  • hoodabdulla

    wow…. excellent……. thaaank you sooo much….:)

  • SAVKE

    THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!!

  • JAY MAKVANA

    EXCELLENT LINK….ITS VERY VERY VERY USEFUL
    ….

  • Raghu

    Thanks a lot

  • Uri

    I tried the whole process, transferring from Samsung smartphone to gmail and it worked perfectly!
    Thanks for the solution.

  • Arun

    at last i solved my issue
    bcoz of this opinion.thanking u so much dear,GOD bless u…..

  • Jarjar_PL

    Try without gmail, just send to your android phone for example via bluetooth one (“the biggest) vcf and run it. It works.

  • Anonymous

    Really well done tutorial – Clear, Precise, Efficient !

  • Anonymous

    It was really useful !!!! saved lot of time ………………many thanks

  • Anonymous

    Superb sir, worked like a charm, Thanks tonnes. :)

  • Amit

    Excellent Solution! Thanks!

  • Anonymous

    Thank you very much… Gr8 work…

  • http://gravatar.com/hbillions hbillions

    Tried it but Gmail contacts only uploaded one contact from the all_in_in.vcf file, what is wrong here?

    • Anonymous

      open with notepad all_in_in.vcf and delete the space before the BEGIN of every contact: Ctrl+H Find what:”space”BEGIN Replace with:BEGIN Replace All

      • http://gravatar.com/piblast piblast

        MANY ALPHANUMERIC LETTERS ARE THERE INCLUDING SPACE …… WHAT TO DO …?

  • dansoukup

    “copy /B *.vcf all_in_one.vcf” did not work for me. However, “copy *.vcf all.vcf” did.

    (http://www.creativeworld9.com/2011/04/how-to-combine-all-vcf-files-to-single.html)

  • futureprogress

    followed all the above instructions, worked only with names but phone numbers, email etc were not transferred, something’s wrong here. vcf to gmail contacts, all info captured, but from gmail to outlook, only the names are present, no further details retained. any suggestions? thanks

  • Anonymous

    thnaks :)

  • Anonymous

    Very good one, Thanks

  • Anonymous

    great thanks

  • Constantin

    I exported from a Nokia 113 all the contacts using NbuExplorer.exe
    copy /B *.vcf Nokia_113.vcf
    worked for me ( Windows XP SP 3) for importing Nokia.vcf (all my contacts from Nokia 113) to Gmail

    Thanks

  • sampath

    thank you very much sir.

  • Anonymous

    AWESOME!!!!

  • visakh

    thank you..it 100 likes. :)

  • Anonymous

    Dios le pague :)

  • Anonymous

    THANKS!!

  • Anonymous

    YOU R AMAZING THANK YOU SOOOOOOOO MUCH

  • Anonymous

    Thanks :)

  • Anonymous

    You are a good person :)

  • Anonymous

    Thank you so much, You are Awesome.

  • NewYearEve

    This is really very helpful and tq so much for your educational input :)

  • Hacketstown

    Thank you, it worked for Calender items as well (.vcs files)
    .
    The following is a very powerful tool to convert backed up Nokia files (.nbu files) to .vcf or .vcs files. http://blogison.com/convert-nokia-backup-nbu-vcf-format-transfer-contacts/

  • Vikas Nahata

    It works absolutely well. Hassles free procedure.
    Thank You so much bro…

  • Anonymous

    Thanks!! worked

  • http://gravatar.com/marzvix marzvix

    Ok, but… When you try import one .vcf file – builded by gmail selecting more than on contacts and exporting it to .vcf – Outlook 2010 cannot import all vcards, just the first one.

    It seems ok do by using cvs as shortcut for almost cases, except to me.

    I have some contacts that uses katakana (I use japanese names for my akido fellows contacts) and the export functionallity from google is ok. Those types come in the file, but when outlook import it using (csv as explained) the types turns in ?? garbage.

    For short: not woked as explained.

    It’s supposed to exist some batch or else to import each vcf, because vcf are imported or exported in usual way as explained and don’t miss the jap characters

    Finally it’s a good step to set up the utf-8 mode for Outlook, as explained here: http://smallbusiness.chron.com/setting-outlook-use-utf8-32242.html

  • http://nil chandan

    THANKYOU VERY MUCH

  • Anonymous

    excellent demonstration. i was able to transfer more than 800 contacts at one go.Thank you

  • Anonymous

    thanks made life simple.

  • Anonymous

    Thanks, I only wanted the .vcf files imported to GMail and all imported in flash !!

  • Anonymous

    thank you. very helpful

  • Anonymous

    Thank you very its worked. well done.

  • Anonymous

    it’s working thank u

  • ramit

  • Anonymous

    YOU ARE AWESOME!!!!!!!! Thank you very much!!!! You save me a whole day of work!!!!!

  • Sumeet

    Thank you mate. You are a genius….It helped me completely. thanks again

  • susan

    windows 7 activation key I had a question about my purchase and they answered me in less than 24 hours. Very good! Great price,

  • jodalb

    Thank you very much for the article. saved time.

  • Rajarshi

    Thanks A lot man it worked Superfast !!! hatsoff to u !!! :) :)

  • mohammad hanif momin

    its work, thanks

  • rams

    super … &&&&&&&&&& thank you very muchhhhhhhhhhhhhh

  • Alin Stoian

    I wanted to transfer contacts from an old Nokia N8. I followed each step and it worked perfect for Google Contacts! Thank you very much, and may you leave long and prosper!

  • DeGris

    Thank you very much. Worked perfectly

  • ridjobradi

    worked as charm. many thanks

  • PBzOpinion

    Thank you SO much! That helped me, and none of the other websites I checked out had any good ideas. I needed to import a lot of files that I’d exported from my phone into Google Drive. That made them .vcf files. And I hadn’t realized you couldn’t just copy them back from Google Drive into your phone! I wanted to copy them into my Google Contacts. It was painful doing it one at a time. You are my hero! Thanks again!

  • http://dipes.com.np/ dipes

    it worked like a charm for me, thank you

  • Vishal Kapoor

    I followed all the above steps to merge multiple vcf files into one but as soon as I imported that single vcf into gmail I also faced the same problem wherein all the phone numbers were created under one contact (last person on the list)….Then I tried another trick after a lot of research on google…I converted the vcf file into gmail compatible csv file from the following link free of cost:

    http://labs.brotherli.ch/vcfconvert/

    Choose the all_in_one.vcf file in the vCard-File: dialog box.
    Choose the Format: as Gmail (CSV)
    Keep the Encoding: as Unicode (UTF-8)
    Finally click the Convert button.

    And Bingo !!! Your gmail compatible csv is ready for getting imported :) :) :)

  • moi

    trop cool, so nice

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