How to save Gmail email (or thread) locally as PDF file

Gmail is no doubt one of the most popular Web-based email services today. One of the key factors that make Gmail so popular is its ease-of-use, which in turn is largely due to its user-friendly design and layout.

While most of the features that Gmail offers are easily accessible, the ability to save an email (or entire thread) locally isn't easy to find. In this tutorial, we will discuss how you can access this feature.

I've tested the instructions in this tutorial on Gmail for Web.

Save Gmail emails locally as a PDF file

First, click the drop-down menu icon (down arrow) corresponding to the email you want to print.

Gmail print Email as PDF

In the window that opens, observe the value of the Destination field. It should ideally be a Google Drive account.

Choose PDF file destination

Anyway, whatever the value, if it's not 'Save as PDF,' click the Change button and change the value to 'Save as PDF.'

Save Email as PDF

Gmail Email printed as PDF

That's it. Now, click the Save button (in blue). This saves the email/thread locally on your machine as a PDF file.

4 thoughts on “How to save Gmail email (or thread) locally as PDF file”

  1. I know how to print an email.
    I came here looking for how to print the complete email thread. I think, the above article is not addressing it.


    • Yes, the article was helpful to me, and I was able to save the whole thread.
      If you select a whole thread, by clicking on the little box to the left of it in your inbox, you can go to “print” as one of your options. It will print the whole thread.
      Or if you just want to save the thread as a pdf (for example, so you can send to someone as an attachment) you change the “destination” on the print menu from “printer” to “save as a pdf file”.
      It worked for me…
      Good luck.

  2. You need to tick or select the unopened email. The SAR icon with a download symbol will pop in the top menu bar once the email is selected. Click the dropdown arrow and select a destination in your G drive and click “Save Here”.


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