How to Import CSV Data into Excel (4 Handy Approaches)

In this article, we’ll show you 4 handy approaches to importing CSV data into Excel.

overview image to import CSV data into Excel through text import wizard

The above image shows the process of importing CSV data into Excel through the Text Import Wizard.

What Is CSV Data?

CSV stands for “Comma-Separated Values”. It is a type of text file commonly used for storing and exchanging data between different software programs, as this format is simple, lightweight, and easy to read and write. Although the name of the format is “comma-separated values”, you can separate the data by other delimiters such as tabs, semicolons, or other punctuation. CSV files can be opened with Notepad and other Text editors along with Excel..

Importing CSV Data into Excel

dataset containing information on some employees

In the above image, CSV data has been opened in an Excel worksheet. The data contains information on some employees stored in individual lines, with the data on each line separated by commas.

Method 1 – Open a CSV file in Excel

The easiest way to import CSV data into Excel is by opening it in Excel.


select File tab

  • Go to the File tab.
  • Click Open > Browse.

choose desired CSV file to open

A dialog box will pop out.

  • Select Text Files > Employee Info (your desired CSV file) > Open.

CSV data in new Excel workbook

The CSV data will appear in a new Excel workbook.


  • The data will appear in the default Excel data format settings.
  • The CSV file will remain in the original .csv format even after opening it in Excel. It won’t get changed to .xlsx or .xls.
  • The limit for the files is 1,048,576 rows and 16,384 columns.
  • You can also double-click the desired CSV file in Windows Explorer to open it in Excel. In this case, Microsoft Excel needs to be set as the default application for CSV files. Otherwise, you must choose Excel as another app for opening the file via the Context Menu.

Read More: Difference Between CSV and Excel Files

Method 2 – Use Excel Power Query Editor


select From Text/CSV in Data tab

  • To import CSV files as an external data connection, go to Data > From Text/CSV.

choose desired CSV file to import

  • In the Import Data dialog box that opens, browse to the desired CSV file location, select the file, and press Import.

click Transform Data

  • We can simply press Load if we don’t want to change anything. However, click Transform Data to make some changes here.

choose By Delimiter to split column in power query

The Power Query Editor will appear.

  • In the Home tab, click Split Column > By Delimiter.

select Comma as delimiter to split column

A new dialog box will pop out.

  • Select Comma as the delimiter from the dropdown list.
  • Select Each occurrence of the delimiter.
  • Press OK.

press Close & Load to load data in Excel

  • Select Use First Row as Headers.
  • Click Close & Load.

imported CSV data output in Excel

The imported CSV data is imported as in the above image.


  • The imported CSV data in Excel is linked to the original CSV file. So refresh the Excel worksheet to update values after making any changes in the original file.
  • You can permanently disconnect the link by converting the table into a normal range. To do that, right-click on any cell in the table and the Context Menu will appear. Choose Table > Convert to Range.

Read More: How to Convert CSV to XLSX

Method 3 – Use the Text Import Wizard


select From Text (Legacy) under data tab

  • Go to Data > Get Data > Legacy Wizards > From Text (Legacy).

choose desired CSV file to import

The Import Text File dialog box appears.

  • Select the desired CSV file.
  • Press Import.

choose delimited in step 1 of text import wizard

The Text Import Wizard dialog box will pop out.

  • Choose Delimited.
  • Check the My data has headers box.
  • Press Next.

select comma delimiter in step 2 of text import wizard

  • Click the Comma as the delimiter.
  • Press Next.

click Finish in step 3 of text import wizard

  • Select General data format.
  • Click Finish.

choose desired location to import data

Another dialog box appears.

  • Choose the location where you want to place the imported data.
  • Click OK.

CSV data imported in Excel

The imported data appears.


  • If don’t see the Legacy Wizards in the Get Data drop-down, go to Excel Options through the File tab > select Options. There, select Data and enable From Text (Legacy).
  • The limit for importing is 1,048,576 rows and 16,384 columns.
  • Select Treat consecutive delimiters as one in step 2 of the Text Import Wizard to avoid getting empty cells when consecutive delimiters are present in the data.

Read More: Convert CSV to Excel Automatically

Method 4 – Use Excel VBA


select visual basic in developer tab

  • Go to Developer > Visual Basic.

paste code in module window

  • In the pop-out VBA window that opens, select Insert > Module.

The Module box will appear.

  • Copy and paste the following code in the box, then click Run:
Sub ImportingCSVFile()
Dim wkSheet As Worksheet, rfFile As String
Set wkSheet = ActiveWorkbook.Sheets("VBA")
rfFile = Application.GetOpenFilename("Text Files (*.csv),*.csv", , "Provide Text or CSV File:")
With wkSheet.QueryTables.Add(Connection:="TEXT;" & rfFile, Destination:=wkSheet.Range("B2"))
.TextFileParseType = xlDelimited
.TextFileCommaDelimiter = True
End With
End Sub

choose CSV file to open

Another dialog box appears.

  • Choose the desired CSV file and click Open.

imported CSV data as VBA output

The CSV data is imported into Excel.

Read More: How to Convert CSV to Excel with Columns

How to Save CSV Files in Excel

save file as CSV


  • Go to the File tab and click Save As.

On the right side, you’ll find different file options in the drop-down list.

  • Choose CSV UTF-8 or just CSV (Comma delimited) and Save it.

How to Open CSV Files in Excel

select multiple CSV files to open


  • Go to the File tab.
  • Click Open > Browse.
  • In the pop-out Open dialog box choose the CSV files to open.
  • Press Open.

Read More: How to Open Notepad or Text File in Excel with Columns

How to Import Data into Excel from Another Excel File

select From Excel Workbook under data tab


  • Go to the Data tab > Get Data > From File > From Excel Workbook.

choose Excel file to import

The Import Data dialog box will appear.

  • Choose the desired Excel file and press Import.

The Excel file data appears in the active workbook.

Read More: How to Convert CSV to XLSX without Opening

Download Practice Workbook

Import CSV to Excel: Knowledge Hub

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Rafiul Hasan
Rafiul Hasan

Rafiul Hasan, holding a BSc in Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering from Bangladesh University of Engineering & Technology, contributes significantly to the ExcelDemy project with almost 1.6 years of dedicated work. Currently an Excel and VBA Content Developer, he has a passion for problem-solving. Authoring over 100 articles for ExcelDemy showcases expertise in Microsoft Office Suites and Data Analysis. In addition to content development, Rafiul actively engages with the ExcelDemy forum, offering valuable solutions to user queries and... Read Full Bio

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