How to set an automatic 'out of office' email response on your iPhone in the Mail, Outlook, or Gmail app

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You can set an automatic out of office email reply on your iPhone so you don't have to check your account on vacation.

  • You can set an out of office message on your iPhone, but only for certain kinds of email accounts.
  • Using the default Mail app, you can only set up an auto-responder for Microsoft Exchange accounts. If you have the Gmail or Outlook app installed, you have a few more options.
  • Here's how to set up an out of office message for the most common mail apps on the iPhone.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

An out of office message is an essential tool for anyone who sends and receives a lot of email, since you can use it to keep contacts informed if you're unable to reply to messages, whether it's just for an afternoon or for a weeklong vacation.

Unfortunately, support for out of office messages is spotty on the iPhone. The default Mail app only allows you to set up automated responses for Microsoft Exchange email accounts.

If you use Gmail on your iPhone, you can set up out of office responses in the Gmail app. And if you use the Outlook app, you have slightly more options, as it supports out of office messages for Exchange, Office 365, and Outlook.com accounts.

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How to set an out of office message on the iPhone's Mail app

1. Start the Settings app.

2. Tap "Passwords and Accounts."

3. Tap the account you want to configure an out of office message for. Remember that this will only work for Microsoft Exchange accounts - if you try any other kind of account, like Gmail or IMAP, the option will not appear.

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Tap the account you want to configure, as long as it's an Exchange account.

4. Tap "Automatic Reply."

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If your account supports automatic responses, you'll see the option for Automatic Reply.

5. Turn Automatic Reply on by swiping the button to the right.

6. Set your away message and enter the end date, then tap "Save" in the upper right corner.

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Complete the automatic message and tap "Save."

How to set an out of office message on the iPhone's Outlook app

1. Start the Outlook app and tap the menu button at the top left of the screen.

2. Tap the gear icon at the bottom of the screen to open the Settings menu.

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Open Settings by tapping the gear at the bottom of the side menu.

3. Tap the account you want to configure an out of office message for. This will only work for certain kinds of accounts, like Microsoft Exchange, Office 365, and Outlook.com. The option will not appear for other accounts.

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Tap the account you want to set up an automatic response for.

4. Tap "Automatic Replies."

5. Turn on Automatic Replies by swiping the button to the right.

6. Enter the message you want to send for your out of office message.

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After you turn on automatic replies, enter the message you want to send to your contacts.

How to set an out of office message on the iPhone's Gmail app

1. Start the Gmail app and tap the three horizontal lines at the top left of the screen to open the menu.

2. Tap "Settings."

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You'll find the automatic replies in Gmail's Settings menu.

3. Tap the Gmail account that you want to send out of office messages for.

4. Tap "Vacation responder."

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The vacation responder is nestled among the app's many settings.

5. Turn on Vacation responder by sweeping the button to the right.

6. Configure the message and dates of your autoresponder.

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