We’ve all been there. Trying to juggle schedules and commitments only to find that we need to cancel meetings. It happens all the time, but the good news is that Google Calendar can help you handle these situations.

In this blog post, we will cover the following:

  • How to cancel Google Calendar events (single and recurring)
  • How to notify attendees about a canceled meeting
  • How to craft a cancellation message and sample template
  • Best practices for canceling meetings

How to Cancel a Google Calendar Event for Everyone (for Organizers)

If you delete a Google Calendar event as a meeting organizer, you will also delete it for all attendees. To proceed, follow these steps:

  1. From your desktop computer or laptop, open Google Calendar.
  2. Select the event you want to cancel.
  3. Click the trash can icon to delete the event.

All event participants will also receive an email confirming cancellation.

Delete Google event

How to Cancel a Google Calendar Meeting Only for Yourself (for Attendees)

If you are an attendee, you can cancel and delete an event from your Google Calendar. Here’s how:

  1. From your desktop computer or laptop, open Google Calendar.
  2. Select the event you want to cancel.
  3. Click the trash can icon to delete the event.

Note that this action does not delete the event from the calendar of other attendees.

How to Delete a Google Calendar Event You’re Invited to

Method 1: On Gmail

When someone invites you to an event, you will receive the invitation via email. You can delete this event by clicking “No” in the invitation, as shown below:

Say no to Google Meeting

If you’re declining a recurring event you’re invited to, you can choose to delete:

  • Only this event;
  • This and following events; or
  • All events

Note: When you click “No”, Google Calendar informs the event organizer via email. They’ll get an email that looks like this.

Declined Google meeting

Method 2: On Google Calendar

You can also delete a Google Calendar event directly from Google Calendar. To do that, follow these steps:

  1. From your desktop computer or laptop, open Google Calendar.
  2. Select the event you want to remove.
  3. Click the trash can icon to delete the event.

If you can't join the meeting, inform the event organizer via Google Calendar’s message window, and give a brief explanation why.

How to Cancel a Recurring Event in Google Calendar

A recurring event is set to repeat daily, weekly, bi-weekly, monthly, or yearly. When you delete a repeating event, you’ll have the following options:

  • This event or Only this instance - deletes this particular event. This action doesn’t delete any future events and meetings
  • This and following events or All following - deletes this recurring event meeting and future meetings
  • All events or All events in the series - deletes all recurring events in the series

Note: You won’t find these options if someone else created the event.

Canceling a single event on Google Calendar affects only that specific occurrence. It leaves the rest of the event series untouched. This can be useful for handling isolated conflicts or changes. For example, if you have a weekly marketing call and you won’t be able to attend this week’s meeting, you only need to delete the meeting for this week. No need to delete future weekly meetings.

On the other hand, canceling the entire series removes all events. This works great when the entire series is no longer needed or should be rescheduled. For example, if you no longer need to meet your team weekly, you can delete the entire series.

You may want to think twice before canceling. If you delete an event, it goes to the trash bin and will remain there for 30 days, during which you can restore it. We’ll go through how this works in a little more detail later on.

How to Notify Attendees About a Canceled Event in Google Calendar

When you cancel a Google Calendar meeting from your computer, you can choose whether you want to notify the attendees or not. Here are the two options you will find:

  1. ‘Send’ - select this to notify attendees of the cancellation. You can include a message explaining the reason for cancellation.
  2. ‘Don’t send’ - select this if you do not wish to notify anyone about the cancellation.
Send cancellation emails to Google Calendar guests

What Happens When You Delete a Google Calendar Event

If you delete a Google Calendar event as an organizer, you’ll cancel the meeting entirely. This includes any reminder notifications. The deleted event will be in the trash bin for 30 days, and you have the option to restore it.

Here’s how:

  1. Go to Google Calendar.
  2. Click the gear icon on the upper right to open the settings and select ‘Trash’.
  3. Hover over the event and click the ‘Restore’ icon.
Restore Google Calendar event


Best Practices for Canceling a Google Calendar Event

Canceling a Google Calendar event requires finesse to maintain professionalism and positive relationships. Here are some suggestions for when you find yourself needing to cancel a meeting:

  1. If you can, give 24-hour notice when canceling a meeting.
  2. Provide a clear reason why you want to cancel the meeting.
  3. If rescheduling the meeting, please provide at least three options. It's  easier to follow the same time and move it to a different day, especially if you're in different time zones.
  4. If you can't attend the meeting, ask for the recording or the transcription.

Quickly Transcribe and Summarize Your Meetings with Tactiq

Summarize meetings with Tactiq

If you can't attend a Google Calendar meeting, meeting transcription tool Tactiq will come in handy.

By transcribing and summarizing these meetings, Tactiq ensures you stay updated on everything that’s been discussed. This way, you can quickly understand the context and contribute with participants after the event - even though you weren’t able to attend.

Think of Tactiq as a virtual note-taker that helps you stay informed.

To install Tactiq on your computer, simply follow these steps:

  1. Visit the Chrome Web Store.
  2. Click ‘Add to Chrome’ on the right-hand side of the page, then ‘Add Extension’.
  3. Go to Google Meet. The Tactiq widget will be on the right-hand side of the screen.

If you wanna learn more about how to send a Google Meet invite, click here: How to Send a Google Meet Invite.

Canceling Google Calendar Events Made Easy

In this blog post, we’ve discussed the basics of cancelling a Google Calendar event, from the technicalities to etiquette around cancellation.

It’s important to remember that no one will mind if you cancel a meeting politely, with good reason, and in good time. Your approach matters so much because it’s a reflection of the value you place on others’ time.

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