Save your Gmail Messages as PDF Files in Google Drive
The older version of Gmail had a useful feature that would let you quickly save an email message in Gmail as a Google Document in your Google Drive. You could open an email thread inside Gmail, choose the Create a Document menu option (see screenshot) and the message would be exported to Google Docs.
The “Save as Google Document” feature is no longer available in Gmail but if you are using Gmail inside Chrome, or have one of the official Gmail mobile apps, you can use Google Cloud Print to save your email messages as PDF files inside Google Drive, one by one.
It works likes this. Open an email message in Gmail, choose the Print option and select “Send To Google Drive” as the destination printer available under Google Cloud Print. It will save the message as a PDF file in your Drive. If your email contains any attachments, they aren’t saved to Drive.
There’s a better alternative thought that will work everywhere. All you to do is apply the label “PDF” to any email thread in Gmail and the message, along with all the included file attachments, will get saved to your Drive.
Unlike Cloud Print that can only save individual email messages, this option can save a batch of messages automatically. Just apply the label “PDF” to one or more emails and a copy of these message would be exported to Google Drive in few minutes.
Here’s how you can setup the Google Script for your Gmail account.
- Install the Save Emails as PDF add-on inside your Google drive.
- From the Add-ons menu, go to Save Emails, Create New rule and select a Gmail folder from the dropdown. This is an open-source Google Script and it does not share your data with anyone.
- Select a folder in your Google Drive and create the rule. The sheet will start saving your messages PDFs in drive within an hour. Or go to Saves Emails - Manage Rules to instantly download any Gmail message as PDF in Drive.
The premium edition of Save Gmail to Google Drive program unlocks more features. It lets you save file attachments as well as email PDFs to Google Drives, all the inline images are rendered in the PDF and the flow of conversation is also preserved in the saved PDF document.
The best thing here is that you can save your Gmail emails to Google Drive as PDFs from anywhere and not just Google Chrome or Gmail’s mobile app. Just apply the label PDF to the email and the script will take care of the rest.
And because the saved PDFs will automatically download to your desktop if the Google Drive client is running, you can use this tool to always have access to your important emails even while you are offline mode.
See more useful Google Scripts.
Google Developer Expert, Google Cloud Champion
Amit Agarwal is a Google Developer Expert in Google Workspace and Google Apps Script. He holds an engineering degree in Computer Science (I.I.T.) and is the first professional blogger in India.