Importing Events using ICS file or URL

[vc_section][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Timely’s Calendar allows you to import feeds from Timely and other calendars (Google, iCal, Outlook, etc.).

How do I Import a Non-Timely Calendar?

Calendar programs allow you to export what is called an iCalendar (.ics) file. This file contains event data (like times, dates, location, title, description, and time zone) in a standard format. This lets different calendar systems share information. Once you have obtained an .ics file or URL from a calendar, you will need to add this to your Calendar.

Obtaining an .ics File

Please consult your software’s documentation on how to export an .ics file. Here are some examples:

Adding an .ics File

If your .ics is already a URL (which means it starts with “http://” or “webcal://”), you are ready to start.

Note: If you’ve only managed to download a .ics file, then it’s best to upload the file to some server or cloud. Once you have uploaded it, make note of the full URL, such as:

  1. Go to your calendar dashboard and click on the left menu item Import.

2. Enter the name of the feed and paste the URL of your .ics file in the FEED URL field.

3. Choose a Category or Tag where you wish to import your event. If you need a new category, create it first using the “New” link.

4. Click Import button. This will import the events into your Calendar and the new box will appear with the feed name and its options.


Importing an event or a feed of events like an external calendar using the synced import engine means that the event is imported in your calendar but it’s linked to it’s source.

A. Basic synced import settings

  1. Find the URL of the Facebook, Meetup, Google, Eventbrite or Timely calendars you want to import into your Timely calendar.
    These calendar URLs are sometimes called “feeds”, “ical”, “iCalendar” or “ics” files. These file contains event data (like times, dates, location, title, description, and time zone) in a standard format.
  2. Go to “Import” > “Synchronized”.
  3. Give a friendly name to this feed.
  4. Enter the URL of the external calendar.
    It should usually start with “http://”, but sometimes you will find URLs that start with “webcal://
  5. Choose a category, tag or custom group that you want to assign to all the events from this feed once imported.

B. Synced import engine

Let’s take a look later at the sync options and suppose you click “Import”. Here’s what happens:

  1. The events from that feed will be imported into your calendar, with all the fields made available by the original calendar (including featured image if available), and will be assigned the fields mentioned on Section A.5.
  2. All events from that source will be imported, past or future, but only the future ones will count against your plan’s limit.
  3. Any events that will be added into the original calendar will be synced into your calendar.
  4. Once the limit of synced imported events included in your plan is hit, you will receive a notification.
  5. We will run an hourly refresh that will check for changes to the original calendar and will sync them to your calendar.
  6. If after the initial import an event is being deleted at the source, at the next feed refresh it will be deleted from your calendar too.
  7. You are able to make certain changes (Hub plan only) that will be preserved at refresh.
    The fields that you can update are: Title, Organizer, Categories, Tags, any custom groups, Description, Featured image.

C. Synced import options

Some of the functionality described in the previous Section B can be overwritten by the following sync options available to certain plans.

  • Import source tags and categories
    When we import the events we verify if the event was part of a certain category or tag on it’s original calendar. If this option is checked, those categories and tags will be imported and added to your calendar, and the imported events will be assigned to them.
  • On refresh don’t remove the events deleted at source
    If checked, the functionality under Section B.6 will change. At refresh any event deleted at source will not be deleted from your calendar.
  • Tweet events
    This option is displayed if you have the “Twitter auto-sharing” feature that will send a tweet before any of the imported events takes place.

D. “My feeds” list

You can see the list of your imported feeds in the “My feeds” list. For each of them you have the options to: manually refresh, edit or delete the feed. Changing the import options of a feed (i.e. categories, tweet, preserve deleted events, etc) will apply to all the events in that feed starting with the next refresh.

For example if you change the category assigned to the events from that feed, the events will be removed form the previous category and added to the new category.


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