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How to exclude certain email sender address from out of office replies in Outlook?

When setting Out of Office reply to all receiving emails in Outlook, you may need to exclude replying to certain email senders. Methods in this article can help you to solve this problem in details.

Exclude certain email sender address from out of office in Outlook

Exclude certain email sender address (internal users only) from out of office in Exchange account

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Exclude certain email sender address from out of office in Outlook

If you are using IMAP or POP3 account in Outlook, you can exclude certain email sender address from out of office in Outlook by creating a rule. Please do as follows.

1. Firstly, you need to create an auto reply template. Please create a new email, composing it and save as an Outlook Template.

2. After creating the auto reply template, click Rules > Manage Rules & Alerts under Home tab. See screenshot:

3. In the Rules and Alerts dialog box, click the New Rule button. See screenshot:

4. In the first Rules Wizard, select Apply rule on messages I receive in the Start from a blank rule section, and then click the Next button.

5. In the second Rules Wizard, click the Next button directly without selecting any conditions. In the popping up Microsoft Outlook dialog box, click the Yes button (with this setting, the auto reply email will send to all senders). See screenshot:

6. Then in the select actions Rules Wizard, select reply using a specific template option in the Step 1 box, and then click the “a specific template” link in the step 2 box. In the Select a Reply Template dialog box, choose User Templates in File System from the Look in drop down list, select the auto reply template you created in step 1, and then click the Open button. Click the Next button to go ahead. See screenshot:

7. Now you need to exclude senders from auto reply. In the following exceptions Rules Wizard, select except if from people or public group box in Step 1 box, click the people or public group link in the Step 2 box to select the senders’ email addresses, and then click the Next button.

8. In the last Rules Wizard window, name the rule and click the Finish button. See screenshot:

9. Click the OK button in the Rules and Alerts window to finish the rule.

From now on, the auto reply email will send to all received emails except for the specified senders.


Exclude certain email sender address (internal users only) from out of office in Exchange account

If you are using Exchange account in Outlook, you can exclude certain email sender from out of office reply as follows.
Note: This only applies for email addresses from inside your organisation.

1. Shift to the Exchange account in your Outlook, then click File > Info > Automatic Replies. See screenshot:

2. In the Automatic Replies dialog box, select the Send automatic replies option, specify the sending time as you need, and then click the Rules button under the Inside My Organization tab.

3. In the Automatic Reply Rules dialog box, click the Add Rule button.

Note: If you want to apply the rule for all Outlook profiles, check the Show rule for all profiles box, otherwise, uncheck it.

4. In the Edit Rule dialog box, you need to:

4.1 Click the From button to select the senders’ email addresses you will exclude from out of office;

4.2 Check the Reply with box, and then click the Template button to create the auto reply template;

4.3 Click the Advanced button. See screenshot:

5. In the Advanced dialog box, check the Only items that do not match these conditions box, and then click the OK button.

6. Click OK buttons. When it returns to the Automatic Replies dialog box, click the OK button, and then click the Yes button in the popping up Microsoft Outlook prompt box. See screenshot:

Now you have excluded specific senders from out of office replies in your Exchange account.


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  • BCC Warning - show message when you try to reply all if your mail address is in the BCC list; Remind When Missing Attachments, and more remind features...
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  • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
    Jim Short · 4 months ago
    This Doesn't work for External users so is misleading and should be re-written.
    • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
      crystal · 3 months ago
      Hi Jim Short,
      Thanks for your reminder! Specific note has been added to the article.
  • To post as a guest, your comment is unpublished.
    jan-Willem de Rijk · 1 years ago
    Hi I've followed your "Exclude certain email sender address from out of office in Exchange account" but this only applies for email addresses from inside my organisation. If I use the "Outside my organisation" tab I get an error saying it cannot be empty. Clould you help me with this?

    Thanks in advance