Copy Paste Visible Cells only (Two more ways to do it)

Last week, we talked about how to copy and paste visible cells alone (ie exclude any filtered rows or hidden columns etc.) In the comments section many of you suggested two more ways to deal with this annoying problem. Let’s take a look them.

Use the shortcut ALT + ;

  1. Select the entire range you want to copy
  2. Now press ALT+; to select only visible cells
  3. Press CTRL+C to copy and Paste as usual

Add “Select Visible Cells” option to ribbon or QAT

If you are like me, then chances are you won’t remember the ALT+; shortcut if you use it once in a blue moon. That is where this option comes handy. Add “Select Visible Cells” icon to your ribbon or quick access toolbar. This way, when you need, it is right there.  Follow below steps.

Right click on ribbon and choose “Customize Ribbon”.

  1. Now, if this is the first time you are adding commands to ribbon, you need to add a “new group” to one of the ribbons.
  2. Then from the left hand listing, choose “Commands not in the ribbon”
  3. Scroll down and click on “Select Visible Cells”
  4. Select the custom group on right hand side.
  5. Click on “Add” to include “Select Visible Cells” feature to your ribbon.

See below illustration for the process.


The process is similar for adding to QAT, except you don’t need to create a group.

So there you go. While you are at it, you can discover some gems in the “Commands not in ribbon” thingie. Try adding a few more.

What is your favorite way to deal with copy / pasting visible cells alone?

My preferred option is to use Go to Special > Visible cells to highlight what matters and then copy pasting as usual. Now that I blogged about ALT+;, it is etched in to my memory.

What about you? How do you copy paste visible cells alone? Do you have any other pasting tricks? Please share in the comments section.

Also read: Paste Special Tricks | Go to Special tricks | Excel Quick Tips | Ribbon Customization


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6 Responses to “Copy Paste Visible Cells only (Two more ways to do it)”

  1. GraH says:

    I'm wondering if the "Use the shortcut ALT + ;" holds the clue to my mystery? Why I never had to do any of these tricks, just copy and paste like always.
    The semi-colon is the standard separator in Belgium installations, whereas in English installations it is the comma.
    So I changed my local settings. Guess what?! I can reproduce it now! Finally it makes sense to me...

  2. Bhavik says:

    If this process of copy and paste special visible cells is done regularly in the same file then I would invoke, VBA to auto filter and then paste special visible cells.

  3. MF says:

    If we are talking about pasting the value and format only, we may use the clipboard to paste if we don't want to select visible cells as the first step. That's an interesting behavior of the clipboard. Try that out. 🙂

  4. GraH says:

    @MF, awesome trick, man.

  5. MF says:


    I have a blogpost about clipboard.

    Hope you like it.

    Happy Friday 🙂

  6. Namrata says:

    I use Alt+ semicolon to copy paste visible cells only

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