How to share a Google Calendar with friends, family, or colleagues for easy collaboration

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So many people depend on a calendar to keep their lives organized and moving forward. You might use a calendar for work, personal projects, schedules, family events, or just about anything that requires you to stay on top of events and deadlines.

But sometimes, those calendars need to be shared.

After all, that family planning you’re doing won’t be of any good to the members involved if they can’t see what’s on the agenda. To that end, what do you do? You share that calendar. And, if Google Calendar is your tool of choice, the sharing is not only easy, but flexible enough to make it such that you can give specific access rights to specific users.

For example, you can give one user view-only rights and another user permission to make changes to events and even manage sharing access.

Also: How to create multiple Google Calendars (and why you should)

How to share a calendar with friends, family, or colleagues for easy collaboration

Requirements

The only things you’ll need to make this work are a valid Google account, a calendar to share, and someone to share it with. Once you have those things in hand, you’re ready to go.

Log in to your Google account and go to the Calendar app. In the left pane, you should see a list of all your calendars. From that list, locate the calendar you want to share.

The Google Calendar sidebar.

The number of calendars you see will depend on how many you’ve created.

Image: Jack Wallen

Hover your cursor over the calendar to be shared, and you’ll see a three-dot menu button appear. Click that button and then, from the popup, click Settings and sharing.

The Settings and sharing popup.

Access to the Calendar settings is a bit obfuscated.

Image: Jack Wallen

Also: How to create a Google Calendar event right from Gmail

In the resulting window, locate the section labeled Share with specific people. Click Add people and then, in the next popup, type a name or email address that will be added to the calendar.

Click the Permissions drop-down to select the proper access for that user. After taking care of that, click Send. The recipient will receive the invite, accept it, and then access the shared calendar according to the permissions you’ve given them.

The Google Calendar Sharing popup window.

This is where the magic happens.

Image: Jack Wallen

A word of warning

It’s important that you only share specific calendars with others. I would not suggest that you share your primary calendar with anyone. If you must do that, only give them view permissions. If you must share a calendar with others (giving them access such that they can edit the calendar in question), I would highly recommend you create a specific calendar for that purpose.

You might also be tempted to publish that calendar, but I would recommend against doing that. Why? Because when publishing a calendar, it makes it available for anyone to see, even via a Google search.

Also: How to enable Gmail features for easy Google Calendar event creation

Chances are pretty good you don’t want strangers knowing where you are and when you’ll be there. Because of this, it’s important that you stick with the sharing option instead. On top of that, only the sharing option makes it possible for you to define what people have what rights to the calendar in question.

If you have a need to let others in a specific group view or even edit a specific Google calendar, this is the way to go.

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