Change Outlook meetings but don't send updates

Last reviewed on December 31, 2013   —  12 comments

Outlook users often ask how they can edit a meeting request and not send updates to the attendees.

I need to change the location of an Outlook meeting and do not want to send the update to the other 15 people on the invite list.

Outlook was designed to send updates when you change the location or time of the meetings because the attendees need to know when and where the meeting is. You also can't avoid sending an update when you add a attendee, for the very same reason.

Adding Notes to a meeting request should never send updates. If Outlook wants to send an update and the only change was notes, make sure you have the latest updates for your version of Outlook.

If you are changing the time to add travel or preparation time, I highly recommend creating an appointment for the extra time instead. Use the Notes field for location changes.

Work offline iconHowever, there is a way to trick Outlook into thinking the update was sent: set Outlook offline before sending the update, then open the Outbox and delete the update before going back online.

Delete a Meeting Update

  1. Work offline iconSet Outlook offline by clicking the Work Offline button on the Send/Receive tab (Outlook 2010/2013) or File, Work Offline in older versions. Alternately, you can disable your network connection, either by unplugging the network cable or turning off the wireless adapter.
  2. Edit the meeting time or location.
  3. Click the Send Update button when finished.
  4. Go to the Outbox, select the meeting update and delete. Or you can open the meeting update then click X to close and the meeting disappears from the Outbox.
  5. Repeat Step 1 to put Outlook back online.

This is not a perfect solution and I know of at least one issue: if someone accepts or declines the meeting after you delete the update, meeting tracking wont be updated. You'll need to change their status manually.

This method will work for all new meetings or to delete meetings when you don't want to send the cancellation notice.

Written by

Diane Poremsky
A Microsoft Outlook Most Valuable Professional (MVP) since 1999, Diane is the author of several books, including Outlook 2013 Absolute Beginners Book. She also created video training CDs and online training classes for Microsoft Outlook. You can find her helping people online in Outlook Forums as well as in the Microsoft Answers and TechNet forums.

Please post long or more complicated questions at Outlookforums.

12 responses to “Change Outlook meetings but don't send updates”

  1. Salome

    Would this delete the meeting in the invitees calendar as well?

  2. Molly Dunton

    If you change the description and don't send the update, does the change show up in everyone else's calendar?

    thanks!

  3. Ron

    how can i simly update a change on the meeting invite as an informational update and not require anyone to respond to my update?

  4. Ev

    Sometimes when I add/delete attendees to a meeting,Outlook will ask if I want to send the updated to all attendees or only to the ones added/deleted. Other times it does not ask me that question and all attendees get the update everytime I change attendees. What do I need to do to assure that I always get that option?

  5. Paula

    How do I delete one person from a meeting without Outlook sending a cancellation to the whole group? Why does it do that!

  6. Mi

    How can I avoid that an update sent by the one who organises the meeting overwrites all notes any invitee had made in the originally planned meeting? (i.e: someone accepts an invite, writes down some items as a memo for this meeting - the meeting gets postponed - he/she gets an update, and al their notes are gone)

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