How to convert a .doc/.docx file to pdf in Mac OS X.

Unlike Windows,there is no need to install a doc to pdf converter software in Mac OS X as the PDF converter comes with the bundle of the Mac OS X software.

It’s a piece of cake to convert a .doc/.docx file into a pdf file on Mac OS X.

  • Just open up the file(.doc/.docx/.rtf/.txt etc.) in any text editor (Text Edit,Text Wrangler,MS WORD,Pages,Open Office.Org ,Libre Office etc.)
  • Click on the File Menu and select the Print option (File->Print..) or simply use the handy short cut Command+P, this will drop a new window as shown in the snapshot below.

  • Now click on the PDF button which is provided at the bottom left of the window.This will populate a menu which looks like the following:

  • On selecting the Save as PDF option from the menu, it will show you an another window as shown in the following snapshot:

  • Give your desired file name and choose your location and press “save” to save your file.
  • Now you are done ! You have converted a file into a PDF(Portable Document Format). πŸ™‚


  1. Hi, i read your blog from time to time and i own a similar one and i was just wondering if you get a lot of spam remarks? If so how do you stop it, any plugin or anything you can recommend? I get so much lately it’s driving me crazy so any assistance is very much appreciated.

    1. Hi,
      Can you please help me in converting “rtf” file to “docx” in mac.In my rtf file I have some content with “tables” but while I am trying to convert this rtf file to docx file using SAVE AS,the “table is disappearing” and the “format in the document is also loosing”.So can u please help out with this problem.

      1. Did you try directly opening the rtf file with Microsoft word? If you have MS Word on your machine, right click on the rtf file and open it with MS Word. This will show you the formatting of your rtf in word, if its messy, edit it and save it as .doc or .docx file. If the formatting is good, just go to the file menu, select “Save As” and save it as .doc or .docx file. If any of the above didn’t work, Zamzar is an excellent free tool which will convert your rtf to .doc file.
        Try it out. I hope they work for you. πŸ™‚

  2. I have tried to follow your procedure converting a file with images (graphs). The original size in docx was 427Kb, the pdf version 8Mb!!! Can you tell us how to generate a reasonably compressed pdf file?

    1. This is definitely a problem ! The size of the PDF definitely increases! I am sorry to say that. But once try out saving with the Save As PDFX format . Lets see what happens!

  3. My conversion to PDF of a DOCX file creates a huge PDF. I have a 3.5 MB .DOCX file and converting it to PDF (whether using the printing option you described or the Save As / Format: PDF) creates a 50.8 MB PDF. Any way around it? I use Mac OS X version 10.7.5 and Word for Mac 2011.

    1. hmm actually the size do increase and i am still using the snow leopard 10.6.8 ! Didn’t upgrade it to the Mountain Lion. So I am sorry that I couldn’t answer your query. But definitely I assure you that I would answer the question pretty soon as I am going to upgrade to the 10.7.5 and so on. πŸ™‚ Have a nice day

      1. Thanks for this. Ended up using a Windows PC for conversion to PDF, but that shouldn’t be the solution. Forgot to mention the mac also split the document in multiple PDFs whenever document’s layout changed from portrait to landscape or back. This was a nice one. Had to concatenate the PDFs in Preview afterwards.:) A nice day to you, as well!

  4. I’m having trouble with my pdf being broken into pieces with layout changes as well. Could someone speak to how one concatenates? This string has been helpful, thanks everyone.

      1. This may come a bit late, sorry. I concatenate several PFDs in one using the Preview program. The only trick is to have the documents in Thumbnails view (I do this by pressing Cmd+Alt+2; you can also go to View and select Thumbnails). The thumbnail can be dragged and dropped above or below any other page in the thumbnail area of the same PDF or another PDF. This can be done (moving the pages around) in the Contact Sheet view, too, but I personally prefer the Thumbnails view as to the right I can see what page I’m moving.

  5. yeah the same here, it breaks the document .docx in parts creating from the same document different PDF’s like: PDF 1 (page 1, 2 ,3) PDF 2 (page 3, 4) and so on…does anyone known some program that doesn’t do this or just avoid this…i believe it happens because the footer is set outside printable area, i tried to put it right but just achieve messing all my document format settings and even so gives me the same error…before i worked with Microsoft, i download PRIMO PDF and worked just great…but now with MAC i don’t known…

    1. By using the above written method cannot accomplish the task which you have mentioned.Although, you can use the third party applications to batch convert the pdf’s. Or you can simply write an apple script and run it in an automator to perform the task

    1. Hi Ankit, using the above method, it can’t be accomplished. I can simply say it depends upon the file content and the size. You can try out the third party applications like Doxillion which is a free word to pdf converter.Good news is you can convert any kind of document to several formats like .pdf,.odt,.html,.rtf,.txt and as well as .xml

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