How to Attach File in Outlook When Replying?

Last Updated on November 30, 2023 by Amit Bansal

When you receive an email message in your inbox and have an attachment, and you forward that email to someone, the attachment is also forwarded along with the email content.

In the case of replying to the message, the attachment by default is removed by Outlook itself, the reason is the person who sends you the email along with the attachment, doesn’t need it back, it consumes space in Outlook both for the sender as well as the receiver.

If you are trying to keep the attachment in your reply, you will face this issue in normal circumstances, you can surely find a method and your Outlook Reply With Attachment.

How To Keep Attachments When Replying in Outlook?

Let’s explore various methods for keeping attachments when replying in Outlook.

Some of these methods are quite common and probably familiar to tech-savvy users like you, while others might be more unique and less widely known.

We’ll dive into each method, providing detailed steps for each one. Whether you’re a seasoned Outlook user or new to this feature, these insights will surely enhance your email management skills.

So, let’s get started and learn how to maintain attachments in your replies efficiently.

Copy Paste Method

In the first method, you simply need to copy the attachments from the original email message and paste them after you hit Reply.

  • Double-click the Original email message that opens in a different window.
  • Copy the attachment/s, by clicking the right mouse button, and selecting Select All from the right-clicking menu. That will select all your attachments.
How To Keep Attachments When Replying In Outlook
  • Again, click the right mouse button, and select the Copy from the right-clicking menu
How to attach file in Outlook when replying
  • Now click on Reply/Reply all from the message tab.
reply all outlook
  • The next step is to click the Paste button from the message tab above in the reply window, or simply hit “Ctrl + V
Outlook reply with attachments

Your attachment is added in the reply message, Send the email and your receiver will get the attachment.

Drag and Drop Method

The drag-and-drop method is the shortcut method of copying and pasting the attachment.

You need to keep the open message as well as the reply message window simultaneously, or don’t need to open the original message in a new window either – you can drag the attachments from the reading pane.

Then simply drag the required attachments from the read email to your reply.

attach file in Outlook when replying

Forward instead of Reply

This issue only occurs when you try to reply to certain emails with attachments, how about if you “Forward and readdress” method?

This keeps your attachment with the mail response.

Enter the email address in the To, CC, and BCC fields of your email, while in replies you need to add the email address of the recipient.

Reply With Attachments using VBA Code

Outlook VBA macros are such external coding that adds some additional functionality in Outlook. VBA macro that can help you reply with original attachments automatically.

Let’s understand how it works:

Below is the predesigned VBA macro-code for Microsoft Outlook.

Sub ReplyWithAttachments()
    Dim oReply As Outlook.MailItem
    Dim oItem As Object
    Set oItem = GetCurrentItem()
    If Not oItem Is Nothing Then
        Set oReply = oItem.Reply
        CopyAttachments oItem, oReply
        oItem.UnRead = False
    End If
    Set oReply = Nothing
    Set oItem = Nothing
End Sub
Sub ReplyAllWithAttachments()
    Dim oReply As Outlook.MailItem
    Dim oItem As Object
    Set oItem = GetCurrentItem()
    If Not oItem Is Nothing Then
        Set oReply = oItem.ReplyAll
        CopyAttachments oItem, oReply
        oItem.UnRead = False
    End If
    Set oReply = Nothing
    Set oItem = Nothing
End Sub
Function GetCurrentItem() As Object
    Dim objApp As Outlook.Application
    Set objApp = Application
    On Error Resume Next
    Select Case TypeName(objApp.ActiveWindow)
        Case "Explorer"
            Set GetCurrentItem = objApp.ActiveExplorer.Selection.Item(1)
        Case "Inspector"
            Set GetCurrentItem = objApp.ActiveInspector.CurrentItem
    End Select
    Set objApp = Nothing
End Function
Sub CopyAttachments(objSourceItem, objTargetItem)
   Set fso = CreateObject("Scripting.FileSystemObject")
   Set fldTemp = fso.GetSpecialFolder(2) ' TemporaryFolder
   strPath = fldTemp.Path & "\"
   For Each objAtt In objSourceItem.Attachments
      strFile = strPath & objAtt.FileName
      objAtt.SaveAsFile strFile
      objTargetItem.Attachments.Add strFile, , , objAtt.DisplayName
      fso.DeleteFile strFile
   Set fldTemp = Nothing
   Set fso = Nothing
End Sub
  • Open the email you need to reply to along with the attachment.
  • Click the “Alt + F11” button which opens the Microsoft Visual Basic for Applications window.
Project 1 Outlook VBA macro code
  • Double-click on This Outlook Session, which opens the black sheet, copy the above macro, and paste it on the sheet.
  • Press the F5 key to run this macro.
  • In the opening Macros dialog box, click RunReplyAllWithAttachments if you want to reply to all with attachments. Otherwise, select RunReplyWithAttachments, then click the Run button.

VBA Macro code is always complicated, it sometimes changes the structure of Outlook, which ends up with Outlook technical glitches. I personally recommended avoiding VBA Macros.

All the above methods are “How to attach the file in Outlook when replying” and avoid the VBA macro method.

Final Words

In conclusion, keeping attachments when replying in Outlook is simpler than it seems, with several practical methods at your disposal.

From the straightforward copy-paste approach to the innovative use of VBA macros, each method offers a unique way to ensure your attachments stay with your replies.

While some techniques, like the drag-and-drop, are quick and user-friendly, the VBA approach is more technical and might not be suitable for everyone.

As a seasoned Outlook user, I encourage you to give these methods a try. It’s a game-changer for efficient email management, especially when you need to maintain the continuity of information in your professional communications.

Remember, mastering these simple tricks not only saves time but also keeps your email interactions smooth and effective.

So, why not try out one of these methods in your next Outlook reply and see the difference for yourself?

Other articles you may also like:

Amit Bansal

Hello, my name is Amit Kumar Bansal, and I am the founder of Through this blog, I focus on Microsoft Outlook, offering insightful and informative content. Additionally, I produce educational videos on YouTube to further enhance the understanding of my audience. visit my YouTube Channel

View all posts

Leave a Comment