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Learn How to Use the DAYS Function in Excel

Read time: 15 minutes

If you want to learn how to get days between two dates, the DAYS function is an answer. The DAYS function is easy to learn; you just have to select a cell with an end date and cell with start date, using formula syntax

=DAYS(end_date, start_date). Formula output will be a number of days between selected dates. As an alternative solution, you can just subtract cells with an end date and start date, and the formula result will be a number of days between two dates.

  1.    Get days between dates using DAYS function
  2.    Get number of days between today and another date
  3.    Calculate the number of days between two dates by subtracting cells

 Get days between dates using DAYS function

Let’s look in the example below, where we want to count a number of days between start and end date. Formula syntax will look like:

=DAYS(end_date, start_date)

=DAYS(C3,B3)

DAYS function can calculate a number of days between two dates, even if you define a date as text in formula syntax. It is very important that the date under the quotations is in date format. Otherwise, the function won’t recognize it. In the example below, you can see formula syntax:

=DAYS("03/06/2019","11/12/2018")

Get number of days between today and another date

Also, you can combine DAYS function with TODAY function, if you want to calculate a number of days from the current date till some date in the future or some date in the past. In the example below is formula syntax for days calculation between today and some date in the future.

=DAYS(end_date, TODAY())

=DAYS(B3,TODAY())

End date is populated in column “Deadline,” and a start date is defined with the TODAY function.

The syntax is almost the same if you want to calculate a number of days from today till some date in the past. TODAY function will be in the end date part of the formula DAYS, and the start date will be some date in the past. Formula syntax will look like:

=DAYS(TODAY(), start_date)

Calculate the number of days between two dates by subtracting cells

Instead of using DAYS function, you can easily calculate a number of days between two dates by subtracting cells with start and end date. This way of days calculations gives the same output as using DAYS function. In the example below is shown formula syntax:

=end_date - start_date

=C3-B3

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Another blog reader asked this question today on Excelchat:
Here are some problems that our users have asked and received explanations on

How to calculate number of days between two dates
Solved by M. U. in 11 mins
I need All dates between 1-59 days highlighted in pink and all dates 60 days and older highlighted in Red.
Solved by A. A. in 20 mins
when i subtracted 2 dates together to get the days in between it gave me 1/12/00 i don't know what that means
Solved by G. Y. in 24 mins

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