Change the default file format for saving workbooks

By default, workbooks are saved in the current Microsoft Excel format. If you work with others who use earlier versions of Microsoft Excel or other spreadsheet programs, you can use another format as the default for saving workbooks.

  1. On the Tools menu, click Options, and then click the Transition tab.
  2. In the Save Excel files as box, click the file format you want.


  • After you set the default file format, all new workbooks are saved in the selected file format unless you specify a different format in the Save As dialog box when you save a workbook.
  • Some features and formatting might not be available if you save the workbook in the file format of a previous version of Microsoft Excel or another spreadsheet program.
Applies to:
Excel 2003