Skip to main content

How to insert a tick or a cross symbol in Microsoft Word and Excel

microsoft word app icon
(Image credit: BigTunaOnline / Shutterstock.com)

Microsoft Word and Excel are two important applications in the Microsoft Office (opens in new tab) suite. And with more online functionality than ever, the latest versions of the software are considered some of the best online collaboration tools (opens in new tab) a business can use today.

One issue that Microsoft Office users often run into is how to insert a tick or a cross into a Word or Excel document.

These symbols are nowhere to be found on a keyboard, so you need to discover another way to make them. Thankfully, it’s a simple process, and there are a few ways you can do this. We cover the five best ways to insert a tick or a cross into a Word or Excel document below.

How to insert a tick or a cross symbol in Microsoft Word and Excel: Preparation

Clearly you’ll need a copy of Microsoft Office to perform these tasks, and we recommend Microsoft 365 (opens in new tab) over all the other alternatives to Microsoft Office (opens in new tab). Over the past few years, features like AutoSave, editing using a mobile device, and threaded commenting in Excel have made team collaboration easier in Microsoft’s office productivity software.

If you have a standalone version of Microsoft Office, the examples below will also work on Office 2004 and above. However, the arrangement of the interface menus differs significantly between versions.

Option 1: Copy and paste from the below symbols

To copy and paste a tick or cross, highlight one of the ticks or crosses below, then copy and paste it to your destination. Highlight (or double-click on) your preferred symbol below:

☑ 

To Copy  once the symbol is highlighted press Ctrl + C (or right-click and select Copy from the menu)

Then place the cursor in the desired document (or select a cell)

To Paste – select where you want the symbol and press Ctrl + V (or right-click and select Paste from the menu)

Option 2: Insert a tick or a cross using the Symbol menu

The first way to add a tick or a cross to a Word or Excel document is through the Symbol menu. You’ll find it under the Insert menu, which is on the ribbon at the top of the screen.

Click on Symbol and choose More Symbols. Change the font to Wingdings in the Font select box. Scroll to the bottom, and you’ll find two different styles of ticks and crosses. Choose the symbol you prefer and click Insert.

Screenshot of the Symbol menu in Word 2021

You can insert a tick or a cross into your document using the Symbol menu. (Image credit: Microsoft)

Option 3: Insert a tick or a cross using the character code

As a slight shortcut, you can insert a tick or a cross by first changing the font to Wingdings, then entering the character codes directly. This only works if your computer’s keyboard has a separate numpad.

After setting the font to Wingdings, hold down the Alt button, type the relevant four-digit character code on the computer’s numpad, and then release the Alt button. The character will be inserted into your document.

The codes for a tick and a cross are 0252 and 0251, respectively. There are two alternatives, 0254 and 0253, respectively, that have boxes around them.

Screenshot of Word showing the character codes for ticks and crosses

You can insert a tick or a cross by selecting the Wingdings font and entering the correct character code. (Image credit: Microsoft)

Option 4: Insert a tick or a cross with a built-in keyboard shortcut

Another alternative is to use built-in keyboard shortcuts in conjunction with another font called Wingdings 2.

Set the font to Wingdings 2 in your document where you want the tick or cross to be added. Press Shift+P for a tick or Shift+O for a cross. If you prefer them to be in boxes, press Shift+R or Shift+Q.

Screenshot of inserting symbols using Wingdings 2

The Wingdings 2 symbols are slightly thinner than their Wingdings counterparts. (Image credit: Microsoft)

Option 5: Set your own keyboard shortcuts for the tick or cross

Finally, you can set up your own keyboard shortcut that will speed up the process of inserting ticks and crosses in the future. You can do this by finding the relevant symbol in the Symbol menu and choosing a shortcut key.

First, open the Insert menu, select the Symbol dropdown, and click on More Symbols. Switch the font to either Wingdings or Wingdings 2 and find the symbol you prefer.

Press Shortcut Key and enter your own combination of keys (e.g., Ctrl+Shift+T). Click Assign. Now, whenever you press that combination of keys, the symbol will be inserted into your document without you having to change the font, visit the Symbol menu, or enter a character code.

Screenshot of creating a shortcut key for a tick symbol

Setting your own shortcut keys can speed up your work if you’re often required to enter ticks and crosses. (Image credit: Microsoft)

Summary

We’ve outlined five ways to insert ticks and crosses into your Microsoft Word and Excel documents. You can use the Symbol menu, enter the character code, or use a keyboard shortcut.

For more information on how to get the best out of Microsoft Word and Excel, we’ve put together a few guides. We discuss how to use the Microsoft Office Ribbon (opens in new tab) and how to start page numbering from a specific page in Microsoft Word (opens in new tab). You may also find it useful to learn how to insert and edit footnotes in Microsoft Word (opens in new tab).

The Microsoft Office suite is in our list of the best tools and apps for remote workers (opens in new tab), though we’ve found that many companies still aren’t making the most of Microsoft 365 (opens in new tab) because employees aren’t always aware of all the features that are available to them. 

If you’d prefer to investigate another option altogether, we’ve highlighted the differences between Microsoft 365 and Google Workspace (opens in new tab).

Richard Sutherland
Richard Sutherland

Richard brings over 20 years of website development, SEO, and marketing to the table. A graduate in Computer Science, Richard has lectured in Java programming, and has built software for companies including Samsung and ASDA. Now, he writes for TechRadar, Tom's Guide, PC Gamer, and Creative Bloq. 

With contributions from