How to Convert a Table to Text in Word 2016

By Dan Gookin

At some point, you may surrender the notion of needing a table in Word 2016 and desire the text to be freed from the table’s confines. To perform such a jailbreak, you convert the table back into plain text or even tab-formatted text. Obey these steps:

  1. Click inside the table you want to convert.

    Don’t select anything — just click the mouse.

  2. Click the Table Tools Layout tab.

  3. From the Table group, choose Select→Select Table.

  4. From the Data group, choose Convert to Text.

    The Convert to Text dialog box appears. It guesses how you want the table converted, such as using tabs or paragraphs.

  5. Click OK.

    Bye-bye, table. Hello, ugly text.

Some post-table-destruction cleanup might be necessary, but generally the conversion goes well. The only issue you may have is when a cell contains multiple paragraphs of text. In that case, undo the operation (press Ctrl+Z) and choose Paragraph Marks from the Convert to Text dialog box (before Step 5).