Contacts for Mac: Import contacts

Import contacts

You can import contacts from other computers or apps as files in a variety of file types—for example, vCard (with the extension .vcf), archive (.abbu), LDAP Data Interchange Format (.ldif), or a tab-delimited or comma-separated value (.csv) text file.

Import from a vCard file (.vcf)

Do one of the following:

  • Double-click the vCard file.

  • Drag the vCard file to the sidebar or the list of contacts in the Contacts window.

  • In Contacts, choose File > Import, then select the vCard file.

Import from an archive file (.abbu)

Important: Importing an archive file replaces your current contact information.

  1. Choose File > Import.

  2. Select the archive file, then click Open.

Import from other file types

Note: Before you import a tab-delimited or CSV file, use a text editor (such as TextEdit) to confirm the file is formatted correctly:

  • Remove any line breaks within a contact’s information.

  • Make sure all addresses have the same number of fields. Add empty fields as needed.

  • Make sure fields are separated by a tab (in a tab-delimited file) or a comma (in a CSV file), instead of another character. Don’t include spaces before or after the tabs or commas.

  1. In Contacts, choose File > Import, select the file, change the encoding if necessary, then click Open.

  2. If you’re importing a text file, review the field labels.

    • If the first card contains headers, make sure the headers are correctly labeled or marked “Do not import.” Any changes you make to this card are made to all cards in the file. To not import the headers card, select “Ignore first card.”

    • To change a label, click the arrows next to the label and choose a new label. If you don’t want to import a field, choose “Do not import.”

When you import contacts from an Exchange account, information that isn’t supported is added to the Note field. Custom fields aren’t imported.

During the import, Contacts indicates if it found duplicates of existing cards, so you can review and resolve them.

Last Modified: Sep 22, 2016
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