You can configure your Outlook email client to automatically accept shared calendar meeting invitations, then show the time as tentatively busy on your calendar -- as long as you own the calendar. When you enable auto-accept for meeting invitations, all meetings are automatically scheduled in the calendar, and the time is blocked and identified as “Tentative” by default. Use Outlook’s "Auto-Accept, Decline" feature to enable and disable auto-accept for your calendars. You can also configure Outlook to automatically decline meeting requests, and to send automated messages to meeting organizers.

Step 1

Open Outlook, and then click the “File” tab.

Step 2

Click the “Options” tab to open Outlook’s Backstage view, and then click the “Calendar” option in the left sidebar.

Step 3

Click the “Auto-Accept, Decline” button in the Automatic Accept or Decline section in the Calendar settings screen. A list of auto-accept and decline features are displayed, each with a check box in front of the option.

Step 4

Check the "Automatically Accept Meeting Requests and Remove Canceled Meetings" check box to configure your Outlook client to auto-accept meeting invitations. The application will also automatically delete meetings canceled by the organizer. When you check this option, a group of conditional options appears below the selection.

Step 5

Check the "Automatically Decline Meeting Requests That Conflict With an Existing Appointment or Meeting" check box to auto-decline conflicting invitations, and then check any additional options, if needed -- for example, you can send an auto-response to meeting organizers by configuring the option from this screen.

Step 6

Click “OK” twice to save the settings and close the dialog box.


  • Note that you cannot configure the auto-accept and decline feature for just one calendar. When you enable this feature, all of your Outlook calendars are automatically configured to use it.

  • Information provided in these steps applies to Microsoft Outlook 2013. Instructions may vary slightly or significantly for other versions of Outlook.


  • Note that meetings are always auto-scheduled as “Tentative” so that the time is blocked off on your calendar while leaving you with some scheduling flexibility.

  • When auto-accept and decline is configured on your Outlook calendars, you may see meeting invitations in your inbox for a short period of time before Outlook’s automation scripts process the requests.