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Strikethrough Shortcut Key

Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Word 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Word, click here: Strikethrough Shortcut Key.

Word provides shortcut key combinations for many different formatting options. One common formatting attribute that does not have such a combination is strikethrough. Most people add it by displaying the Font dialog box and then selecting Strikethrough in the Effects area of the dialog box.

You can define your own shortcut key for strikethrough by customizing Word. All you need to do is follow these steps:

  1. Press Ctrl+D or choose Font from the Format menu. Word displays the Font tab of the Font dialog box. (See Figure 1.)
  2. Figure 1. The Font tab of the Font dialog box.

  3. Hold down Alt+Ctrl and, at the same time, press the plus sign on the numeric keypad. The mouse pointer turns into a clover symbol.
  4. Click on the Strikethrough check box in the Font dialog box. (As you move the mouse pointer to get ready to click, the mouse pointer may change back to an arrow instead of a clover; this is OK.) When you click, Word displays the Customize Keyboard dialog box with the insertion point blinking in the Press New Shortcut Key box. (See Figure 2.)
  5. Figure 2. The Customize Keyboard dialog box.

  6. Type whatever shortcut key you want to use for the strikethrough format. Just hold down whatever combination of the Alt, Ctrl, and Shift keys you want, and then press the desired key to go with that combination. If the combination is already taken, that information shows just below the Customize Keyboard dialog box, and you can then change to a different shortcut key. (A good combination to consider is Alt+Shift+S or Ctrl+Alt+S, neither of which are used in a default installation of Word.)
  7. Click the Assign button. The shortcut key is now assigned to apply strikethrough formatting.
  8. Click Close to dismiss the Customize Keyboard dialog box.
  9. Click Cancel to dismiss the Font dialog box.

It should be noted that there are a variety of ways that you can display the Customize Keyboard dialog box, which is necessary for the above steps. The method used in these steps was selected because after you complete steps 1 through 3, the Customize Keyboard dialog box is already filled in with the proper settings to invoke the strikethrough formatting. If you use a different method to display the dialog box, you'll need to make the specific settings in that dialog box required to apply strikethrough formatting. (In other words, the above method of invoking the Customize Keyboard dialog box saves you some time when compared to other methods.)

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (418) applies to Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Word (Word 2007 and later) here: Strikethrough Shortcut Key.

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Comments for this tip:

James    13 Dec 2014, 12:26
To perform strike through on text on Windows 2010 and up is Ctrl + T
Martin    03 Dec 2014, 08:09
This is assigned to Ctrl+5 since MS office 2007. Other than that it's a good guide how to add shortcuts in general :)
Sharad    21 Nov 2014, 09:14
Very good, solution. Thanks a lot for sharing. Saved a lot of time for me.
netgazer    12 Nov 2014, 06:20
Great tip, and by the way, the tip also works on Word 2007. Thanks.
Chrispine christian    20 Sep 2014, 00:20
Thank you for your tips, you have taught me a very critical unique shortcut in MS word.
mustafa ipekgil    10 Jul 2014, 07:23
that worked. thank you !
MALLIKARJUNA SHARMA    02 Jul 2014, 22:53
I found this laborious process not necessary. Just select the portion of the word document you want to strike through, click Control+D then font dialogue box opens and then go to strike through box below and click it. That's enough, the selected portion is struck through by a line.
Vicky    02 Jul 2014, 14:13
Thanks for posting this great shortcut!
Pete    19 Jun 2014, 20:17
Thank you.

In 2007 I had to click the circle, [Word Options] at the bottom, Customize Tab, and then [Customize Button] for Keyboard shortcuts.

Then I selected 'All Commands' under Categories, Strikethrough under commands, and set mine up as [CTRL] & [ALT] & 'Q'.
mohsen jalalian    28 May 2014, 09:17
tanx, very helpful...
Brad C    07 Mar 2014, 15:27
This is gr8 !
Allan F C    15 Dec 2013, 11:53
Brilliant, thank you
Hariharan    05 Nov 2013, 10:34
Helpfull Post. Thanks a lot. It works fine.
pramod    30 Aug 2013, 03:56
Thank you
Leonid    28 Aug 2013, 20:04
Thank you!
Shirley    23 Aug 2013, 14:34
very useful! thank you.
Olena    01 Aug 2013, 08:08
Thank you!
MMOCK    18 Jul 2013, 08:45
Thank you. I didn't even know how to strikethrough without a shortcut and when I googled, this tip was one of the first things I found. So not only am I now striking through, I'm striking through quickly! Thanks for taking the time to post this.

BTW, neither CTRL-5 nor CTRL-F5 worked for me in Word 2003. One changed spacing from single to double, and one changed window from maximized to a smaller window.
Kat    14 Jul 2013, 11:15
Thank you so much this was wonderful!
Naomi    11 Jul 2013, 08:10
@Rakesh, thank you so much for your help! Everything is going to be striked through now.
HarshaSree    02 Jul 2013, 20:29
Awesome! This worked perfectly, thanks :)
ppatel    02 Jul 2013, 01:19
Excellent, instructions are so good. made my day.

Thanks a lot.
Rakesh    20 May 2013, 02:21
If you DO NOT have NUMERIC KEYPAD -

MS Word 2010 -> File -> Options -> Customize Ribbon -> Keyboard Shortcuts Customize... -> Categories - All Commands -> Command - Strikethrough -> (Give a combination) -> Assign
Flash    22 Apr 2013, 02:41
@Mich, use On-Screen Keyboard (Start > Programs > Accessories > Accessibility)
Rukshan    02 Apr 2013, 22:13
Thanks Allen.
Mich    02 Apr 2013, 18:40
What do you do if your Word program is installed on a laptop with no numeric keypad? I can press CTRL/ALT and the key with the "+", but the cursor changes to a bold + (not a clover), and then when I click on the check box for the strikethrough option, absolutely nothing happens other than the normal function of selecting that checkbox! I have MS Word 2000.
Hello    06 Mar 2013, 02:18
Very useful, thanks so much!
Jules    26 Feb 2013, 23:13
This is exactly what I needed to know! Thank you for making this so easy to understand. The pictures and inescapably clear directions were very helpful to me.


Thank you!
chetan nehru    06 Feb 2013, 06:47
I am sorry to say that after i close down ms word, the next time i open a new document. The strikethrough button and the assingment does not work. For instance I assigned CTRL+SHIFT+S for strikethrough. Now when I open the new document i am unable to use the same CTRL+SHIFT+S combination. I mean to say strikethrough does not work now. What to do? Pls help.
chetan nehru    06 Feb 2013, 06:43
Thank u sooooo much. I was looking to add the strikethrough button on my tool bar. Your tips has helped me.

Thank u.
Abhilash    22 Jan 2013, 11:27
Cool, worked!
This is great!
Patrick    17 Jan 2013, 16:59
This feature should have been bound to something other than CTRL + F5, in my opinion. The F- buttons are the last buttons I tap when experimenting.
Elizabeth    16 Jan 2013, 16:44
Thanks, this was just what I was looking for. Couldn't find it on Microsoft's site.

Your instructions were very clear and easy to understand/follow. You should consider writing a book!
Doug    19 Dec 2012, 15:07
Thank you!!! That's an awesome tip!
Kevin    08 Nov 2012, 14:09
Thanks!!!!!!!!!!!!
Mike M.    20 Sep 2012, 15:45
Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU! Oh, my life just got a little easier. See Mikey Dance ;)
Matthew    06 Sep 2012, 21:25
More spec ifically, my problem is that I don't have a number pad with a plus sign. The plus is just a shift option above the equal sign. Suggestions welcome. I'd love to be able to do this. thanks
Matthew    06 Sep 2012, 21:08
I have office for mac o8 and this didn't work at all. did I do something wrong, or is this site just wrong for me???
Donji    30 Aug 2012, 16:45
Ctrl-5 works as a shortcut, no setup
James    28 Aug 2012, 13:26
Awesome. Thanks for this
Barb    27 Aug 2012, 10:51
Grea info, simple instructions, Thx!
Elizabeth    21 Jul 2012, 13:45
I've tried this three times, and none of the shortcuts I assigned actually work, nor can I remove them. I have Microsoft Word Starter instead of the full program - is that why it's not working?
mary    23 Jun 2012, 12:11
Thanks ,this was very useful!
Stu    20 Jun 2012, 11:29
Worked like a charm, Thanks! Drove me nuts thinking there was no shortcut command to strikeout!
Patrick    19 Jan 2012, 03:32
Perfect. Just had to know this one.
vernna    04 Jan 2012, 16:16
Have you considered writing a book about this? Seriously - it was such a simple task on previous Word versions, what were they thinking?

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