How to vlookup and return date format instead of number in Excel?

The vlookup function is used frequently in Excel for daily work. For example, you are trying to find a date based on the max value in a specified column with the Vlookup formula =VLOOKUP(MAX(C2:C8), C2:D8, 2, FALSE). However, you may notice that the date is displayed as a serial number instead of date format as below screenshot showed. Except for manually changing the cell formatting to date format, is there any handy way to handle it? This article will show you an easy way to solve this problem.

Vlookup and return date format instead of a number in Excel

Vlookup and return date format instead of a number in Excel

If you want to get the date based on the max value in a certain column with the Vlookup function, and keep the date format in the destination cell. Please do as follows.

1. Please enter this formula into a cell and press Enter key to get the correct result. See screenshot:


Note: Please enclose the vlookup formula with TEXT() function. And don’t forget to specify the date format with double quotes at the end of the formula.

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  • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
    Chala · 5 months ago
    I'm trying to VLOOKUP over two different sheets, this is the formula I have done, but it's not working:
    =TEXT(VLOOKUP(MAX('Logging'!C9:C1250,Data!$A:$A),'Logging'!C9:C151:'Logging'!G9:G150, 5, FALSE),"DD/MM/YY")

    I want the date from the Logging sheet to show on the Data sheet, but next to it's name. Does anyone know if this will update with the latest date if the name appears again?
    • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
      Chala · 5 months ago
      Been answered, someone at my work knew what do. For those who want to know:
      This is the formula they used: =MAX(IF('Logging'!C:C=Data!A2,'Logging'!G:G,0))
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    Helen · 1 years ago
    my date changes to a different year. my formula is =TEXT(VLOOKUP(D4,'payment list (2)'!$B$3:$I$694,7,0),"dd/mm/yyyy")
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    AJAY · 1 years ago
    i need a date with help of vlookup but date entry was 2 and 3 and more. I need last one date when order completed kindly help
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    Vicki · 1 years ago
    My Formula =TEXT(VLOOKUP(A2,I2:I931,2,FALSE),"MM/DD/YY") gives me the #REF! error. Any advice?
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      sally · 1 years ago
      you need absolute value referencing. with the array selected click the F4 key on your keyboard to include absolute referencing in your array.