How do I transfer Hotmail contacts to another account?
Transferring Hotmail contact information turns out to be slightly difficult,
and certainly not obvious. While Hotmail allows you to import contacts, there
doesn’t appear to be any way to export them.
That’s where we need to get clever.
Become a Patron of Ask Leo! and go ad-free!
If you can, the easiest approach is to make use of Outlook Express. If you
have a premium (read: paid) Hotmail account, then you can use Outlook Express to
access Hotmail accounts. Unfortunately you can no longer use Outlook Express
for free Hotmail accounts. What a lot of people don’t know is that you can use
it to download your Hotmail contacts into your Outlook Express address book.
This about.com article, Import Contacts and Email Addresses
from Hotmail, gives instructions on doing exactly that.
Once you’ve got the contacts in Outlook Express, you can then export to a
“.csv” file. (Instructions also covered in, or pointed to, by the
aforementioned about.com article.) The “gotcha” here is that contacts which
have been organized into groups or sub folders within contacts may not export
properly. You’ll need to place them at the “top level” within the contacts
And finally, you log into your new or different Hotmail account, and import
the CSV file into its contacts.
doesn’t appear to be any way to export them.”
Another approach is to use MSN Instant Messenger as your contact management
tool. Messenger contacts appear in the Hotmail address book for the same
account (though not all Hotmail contacts will appear in Messenger – only those
whom you’ve added to your Messenger contacts). Messenger includes both import
and export functions for the contact list. Just log in to Messenger using one
account, hit the Contacts menu, Save Contact
List and save to a file. Then login to Messenger with a different
account, hit Contacts, Import Contacts from a Saved
File, load up the file, and you’re done.
Both approaches have drawbacks, but with a little patience the task can be
accomplished. And, as with most things, there are probably other approaches as