How to get email read receipt and delivery receipt in Outlook

Do you want to make sure that people get your emails? Outlook delivery and read receipts will notify you when your message is delivered and opened. In this article you will learn how to track sent messages and disable read receipt requests in Outlook 2019, 2016, and 2013.

I sent it, but did they get it? I suppose, this burning question puzzles us all every now and then. Fortunately, Microsoft Outlook has two great options that help users find out what happened to their emails after they hit the Send button. These are Outlook Read and Delivery Receipts.

When you send an important message you can request one of them or both at once. Or you can add read receipts to all your emails. It's even possible to create a special read receipt rule or disable read receipt requests if they become annoying. Would you like to know how to do it? Go ahead and read this article!

Request delivery and read receipts

At first let's define the difference between delivery and read receipts. A delivery receipt informs you that your email message was or wasn't delivered to the recipient's mailbox. A read receipt shows that the message was opened.

When you send an email, it goes to the recipient's email server, which delivers it to their inbox. So when you get the delivery receipt it shows that the message successfully reached the intended email server. It doesn't guarantee that the email is in the recipient's inbox. It can be accidentally removed to the junk e-mail folder.

The read receipt is sent by the person who opens the message. If you got a confirmation that your email was read by the addressee, it is obvious that the email was also delivered. But not the other way around.

Now I'd like to show you how to request delivery and read receipts for a single message and for all emails you send. You'll also see how to set a rule based on getting delivery and read receipts in Outlook 2013.

Track a single message

If you're sending a really important message and want to be sure that the recipient will get it and open it, you can easily add delivery and read requests to this single message:

  • Create a new email.
  • Click on the OPTIONS tab in the New Email window.
  • Tick the 'Request a Delivery Receipt' and 'Request a Read Receipt' boxes in the Tracking group.
  • Press Send.

Check the boxes in the Tracking group on the OPTIONS tab to request delivery and read receipts

As soon as the message is delivered and the recipient opens it, you will get the email read notification like the one below.

When the recipient opens the email, you will get the email read notification

You see that a common email notification normally contains the recipient's name and email address, subject, date and time of email sending and when the recipient opened it.

Keep an eye on all sent emails

Let's imagine another situation. Suppose, all emails you send are crucial and you want to double-check that every single letter reaches its recipient. Then it's better to request delivery and read receipts for all outgoing messages:

  • Click on the FILE tab.
  • Choose Options form the FILE menu.
  • Click on Mail in the Outlook Options dialog window.
  • Scroll down to the Tracking area.
  • Check the 'Delivery receipt confirming the message was delivered to the recipient's e-mail server' and 'Read receipt confirming the recipient viewed the message' boxes.
  • Click OK.

Click on Mail in the Outlook Options dialog window to request delivery and read receipts for all outgoing messages

Now you know how to track a single message and all outgoing emails. What if you want to get read receipts only for the emails that have attachments or for those with specific words in the subject or body? Find out the solution in the next part of the article.

Create a read receipt rule

Outlook 2010 and 2013 make it possible to set a special rule to get delivery and read receipts. It means that you will get the notifications if certain conditions are met. Follow the steps below to set a rule according to your needs:

  • Launch Outlook.
  • Go to the HOME tab -> Move group.
  • Click on Rules.
  • Choose the Manage Rules & Alerts option from the Rules drop-down list.
    Open the Rules drop-down list to choose the Mange Rules & Alerts option
  • Click on the E-mail Rules tab in the window that displays on your screen.
  • Press the New Rule button to start the Rules Wizard.
  • Select 'Apply rule on messages I receive' or 'Apply rule on messages I send' in the Start from a blank rule section.
  • Click Next.
  • Tick the condition(s) from the suggested list.

For example, I select the condition 'with specific words in the recipient's address'. It means that I request a read receipt only from the recipients who have specific words in their email addresses. What are specific words? Feel free to discover below.

  • In the field under the list of conditions click on the link (the underlined value) to edit the rule description.

In my case the underlined value is 'specific words'.

  • Type in a word or phrase to search for in the recipient's address.
  • Click Add and the words will appear in the search list.
  • Click OK to save the changes.

We're back to the Rules Wizard and in the field below the list of conditions I can see that the rule description is nearly complete.
Select the conditions to describe the rule

  • Click Next to switch to the list of actions.
  • Tick the necessary action. In my case I want to be notified when the message is read, so I choose the 'notify me when it is read' option.
    Tick the necessary action to make the rule description complete
  • Click Next.
  • Choose any exceptions to your rule, if you think it's necessary.

I don't need any for mine.

  • Click Next.
  • Check if everything is correct in your rule description. You can also specify a name for the rule or set up rule options.
  • Click Finish.
  • In the Rules and Alerts window first click Apply, and then OK.

Now the rule for requesting a read receipt is set up! So I will get read receipts only for emails I send to the addresses with specific words.

Track receipt responses

Instead of scrolling through hundreds of read receipts in your inbox, use the following trick to see all the recipients who read your e-mail.

  • Go to the Sent Items folder.
  • Open the message you sent with a request. It is normally marked with a special sign like in the screenshot below.
     Go to the Sent Items folder to open the message that you sent with a request for a delivery or read receipt
  • Click Tracking in the Show group on the MESSAGE tab.
    Press the Tracking button to check the receipt status

Now you can see how many recipients read your message and when they did it.

Note: The Tracking button doesn't appear until you receive at least one receipt. After you get the first one in your Inbox, it might take several minutes before the button becomes available.

Disable read receipt requests

Now let's look at the read receipt request from a recipient's point of view.

If you get it once a year, you are likely to confirm that you get the message. But if you are constantly prompted to send a read receipt for every message you receive, one day it may set your nerves on edge. What can you do?

Method 1.

The read receipt request in Outlook 2013 looks like on the following screenshot.
Double-click the email to display the request message

Note:The request message displays only if you double-click the email to open it. If you read the message in the preview pane, the request window won't pop up. In this case you need to switch to another email for the read receipt request to appear.

If you don't want the sender to know that you opened and read this particular email, simply choose No. Still you are likely to get the request again. If you don't want it to happen, select the 'Don't ask me about sending receipts again' check box.

Select the check box in the request dialog window to disable email read confirmations

Next time you get the message that includes a read receipt request, Outlook will not show any notification.

Method 2

There is another way to block read receipt requests.

  • Go to FILE -> Options.
  • Choose Mail from the Outlook Options menu and go down to the Tracking area.
  • Select the 'Never send a read receipt' radio button.
  • Click OK.

Select the 'Never send a read receipt' radio button in the Tracking area of Mail Outlook Options

If you choose the 'Always send a read receipt' option, Outlook will automatically return receipts to the senders. The request message won't bother you anymore. Looks like another good way out. :)

Tip: Pay attention to the links that you click in the emails you receive. All URL-shorteners (for example, can track your clicks. The message can also contain a tracking image, so when you upload the image it can activate a tracking code and it'll become clear that the email is opened.

Email Tracking Services

If both the sender and the recipient use Microsoft Outlook with Exchange Server, it is not a problem at all to request delivery receipts and get notified when the email is opened by the recipient. But not all email clients support this mail confirmation feature. What should you do then?

There is a variety of services available for tracking your emails. The most well-known are,, They all use the same principle in their work. When you are ready to send your message, you just add the tracking service address to the recipient's email address, and your message turns out to be automatically and invisibly tracked. As soon as the recipient opens the email, you will get a notification from the service and your recipient will not know about it. The information you get varies from service to service. Most of them tell you when your message was opened, how long it took the recipient to read it and where the addressee was when he got the message.

Note: Email tracking services can't give you 100% guarantee that your email was read. They can only track HTML messages (not plain text ones). HTML emails normally contain images that are often switched off by default or blocked. The services rely on inserting scripts in the email content to be delivered to the recipient, but most up-to-date email programs trigger alerts about unsafe content being included in the message. That's why the work of many tracking services came to an end.

Neither Outlook delivery / read receipts nor email tracking services are able to guarantee that the recipient read and understood the message. But all the same, delivery and read receipts are among most useful tools that Outlook 2016, 2013, and 2010 provide you with.

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Category: Outlook Tips

Table of contents

80 responses to "How to get email read receipt and delivery receipt in Outlook"

  1. Sayed Waheedullah Saheedian says:

    Thanks for this complete information, it was too useful for me.

  2. Kumar_OfficeTricks says:

    This more eloborate and detailed than any tutorial available in internet.

    Starting with a "Read Receipt" for a single mail, then to all mails and then how to direct all receipt to directory.

    The Flow of the article is so arranged, clean and easy to understand. Thanks for the article. It also helped me to know how to write nice articles.

  3. selam says:

    Does the receiver know that i know whether or not he reads it?

    • Thank you for the question, Selam.
      Every time you ask for a read receipt, the recipient can choose to send it or not. If you get the email read confirmation, it means that the recipient opened your email. If you don't get the notification, most likely the addressee has chosen not to send it or hasn't opened the message yet. In both cases the recipient knows that you want to know if he reads your email or not.

  4. Eric says:

    Is there any way to get a delivery or read receipt on a single reply? Tags doesn't have anything.

    • Hello, Eric,
      Thank you for your question. To track a single email, please tick the ‘Request a Delivery Receipt’ and ‘Request a Read Receipt’ boxes in the Tracking group on the OPTIONS tab. If you don't get the email read notification, most likely the recipient chooses not to send it or their Outlook is adjusted never to send read receipts.

  5. Claire Belberg says:

    As others have noted, your article is far more comprehensive than any others I have found on the internet. Thanks! If it wasn't for people like you, most Microsoft users would be left in the dark, since their 'help' is almost never helpful. Thanks again.

  6. Charles says:

    This does not apply to my Outlook email account, it is a newer account but my outlook account does not have that layout nor does it have any of those options. Can someone please help me out ?

  7. BALESTUR says:

    Thank you for the great article. I have a question though. What does "your message has been successfully relayed to the recipients, but the requested delivery status notifications may not be generated by the destination" mean. Is such a delivery notification proof of delivery?

    • Hello,

      Thank you for your feedback.

      The notification says that your message reached the recipient's email server, but the receiver hasn't got it in Outlook yet. An email is always automatically sent to the recipient from the server and in 99 % of cases they get the email.

  8. Bill says:

    When request for read receipt is in a "rule" similar to your suggestion, the tracking icon does not appear on the sent email. It seems to only appear if you also manually click the request read checkbox. Despite this, I do receive receive read receipts "based on the rule", however they only show up in the inbox and are not "attached" or viewable from the original sent email itself. Am I missing something?

  9. Vince says:

    Great info, but I just want to confirm - can I set up a rule or similar that will just show that the mail was opened, without asking for a read receipt?

  10. derrick says:

    How do you turn off the "do not ask me again option, so I can send the response manually?


  11. Matthew says:

    Is there a way I can see if i sent a read receipt or not? I get a lot of emails with read receipts through work. I like to think I always press yes to the read receipt request, but occasionally colleagues claim I have not sent a read receipt.

    Thanks in advance,


  12. Rene says:

    Can I get the Delivery Receipts from a mapped email alias. When I send an email on behalf of another email alias, the receipts do not show up.

  13. Paul Musee says:

    Hi Ekaterina,

    Thanks for your wonderful blog, it is such an eye opener.
    I would like to know how to set a read receipt in such a way that when a recipient reads mail you get a notification with their signature. (A blank email with the receipient signature.)

  14. AMY says:

    We just noticed that if employee's have a reading pane in Outlook, it will never send a read receipt back. How do you get around that as I don't know who all use the reading pane on the right hand side.

  15. Javad says:

    Wow, this article is great
    Thank you Ekaterina

  16. Franklin says:

    I run a project in which my associates want to know that I got their input. Before Windows 8 and Outlook 2013 it was easy. Now I cannot seem to find the way forward. Thanks in advance.

  17. yacine says:

    thank you alot

  18. Hooster says:

    Ekaterina Bespalaya

    Is there a way to send the read receipt and have the recipient not know about it, but the sender gets the receipt that his email was read?

  19. (xxx)xxx-xxxx says:


  20. Salman says:

    it was very helpful got it very easily otherwise its bit difficult to search online, understand, do and success.

    it was awesome experience.

    thanks a lot

  21. Gary says:

    Very good information on Outlook 2013. How do I get the delivery receipts and read receipts to show up in the Inbox Folder? Currently they show up in the Spam Folder

  22. Gary says:

    Per my previous today reply question on where the delivery receipts show up I meant to ask how the receipts can be made to show up on the Inbox reading pane where the incoming e-mails show up? This is where they show up in Outlook 2003 and Outlook 2010 ??


  23. Ryan says:


    Is there any way to get a read receipt for for a calendar invite? I know there is the option to have them "Accept" "Decline" or "Propose New Time" but I was hoping there would be a way to see if they, at the very least, saw the invite and did not respond. Let me know if it is possible.


  24. John says:

    Hi Can anyone HELP

    My Email account has only got OUTLOOK.COM at the top and no other panes like you have in your e-mail ,I tried to search for a answer but I noticed someone else put up a message and got no reply

    "This does not apply to my Outlook email account, it is a newer account but my outlook account does not have that layout nor does it have any of those options. Can someone please help me out ?"

    Am I being thick because I don't know what to do

    all the best

    John..............please help

  25. biram says:

    How do you can show respect to the receiver of you e mail?

  26. Gogail999 says:

    I have several individuals at work that choose to not send a read receipt. Because I send emails to everyone in my group, and all need to read them, I noticed at first that I never received confirmation of the "read" from one person. I mentioned this to him, and now, 3 of the 5 in my group refuse to allow the read receipt to be sent. The rebels that refuse (mostly to annoy me and cause me to ask if they have received an email, thereby wasting my time)are wasting my time. Is there a way that they cannot read the email without accepting and sending a read receipt? My coworkers find it amusing that I send the read receipts. I have used "read receipts" as discovery in tax law suits, that is why I ALWAYS have it turned on. I have one folder with nothing but the read receipts. It's amazing how handy they come in!

  27. Rawle Trini says:

    Is it possible to request a read receipt only from the main recipient and not from the 'CC' and 'BCC'?

  28. Gareth says:

    Thanks for your clear instructions. However, although the box "Automatically update original sent item with receipt information" (in "OUTLOOK OPTIONS")is ticked, the "read receipt" is not attaching to the "sent message". Also, neither the "SHOW" icon nor the "Tracking" icon is shown on the Message bar. Hope you can assist. Cheers G

  29. Hunter says:

    I sent an e-mail with a read receipt but got a read receipt back from someone that I didn't send it to. Is it possible for someone to have forwarded the e-mail, without reading it and the receipt was from the new recipient?

  30. rob says:

    I can not find anywhere to set read receipts on my email.

  31. Miljan says:

    Hello! First of all I would like to thank you for this great informations. I have one question. One very important client sent me e-mail with ''read receipt request'' but I pressed NO. Is there any way that I can send him read report after I've already opened and read his e-mail?

    Thank you very much!

  32. Lilijo says:

    Thank you for this enlightening post. I have two questions:
    1. You say that the recipient will "always know" whether a read receit was requested? Is it really true (I am using Outlook 2007). I thought that this was the case only if the recipient checked that option in the tracking options.
    2. What is the difference (from the recipient's perspective) between the option of creating a rule to be notified when an email I send is read and checking the "read receipt" option under tracking options?
    Thank you.

  33. kISTON says:


  34. Richard says:

    WOW what an amazing e-mail account! I just have Outlook that came with Win 7 and it is NOTHING even close to that. I first thought you were talking about MS Word because that is what the menu bar looks like. In Outlook the top bar just says "New" and that's it. "New" gets me a new message window to write in. Is this Outlook an add on?

  35. Nemo says:

    Is there any way in Outlook 2010 to prevent these secondary services from automatically sending a read receipt?

  36. atefeh says:

    thanks alot

  37. Sve says:

    I have a problem with my Outlook 2013 Account. The problem is when I send a Invitation to an other person hat the Invitation and answer positive and send me feedback for the invitation that he will attend I actually don't receive Mail with his answer.

  38. Tom says:

    Great job. A question that I have is if a person is not connected to the internet when they open their emails do any read or delivery receipts get sent?

  39. alyson says:

    If a person only previews an email, as they can on Gmail, will a read receipt be generated?

  40. mohamadbano says:

    Read receipt doesn't work :|

  41. Elizabeth says:

    Hi Thanks for your nice tutorial. I have a problem with a user mailbox. She sends to several users the same email every morning. The Outlook settings are NOT set to request a delivery receipt. But she receives delivery confirmation all the time. why is this happening. Any idea? (Using Outlook 2010 with Exchange 2013) I read that could be related to text formatting.

  42. Loren says:

    Hi, is there a way to have all your read receipts auto populate a spreadsheet for tracking?

  43. Lucinda says:


    I sent an email with subject : Lunch Appointment to Mr Smith. The Read Receipt from him has a subject name : Test re : Lunch Appointment. Could you please enlighten me where could have gone wrong with his "Read Receipt" setting for the words " Test re " to appear. How do i advise him to rectify it.

    Thank you for your help.


  44. Amy says:

    I am using Microsoft Office Professional Plus 2010. After I set the rule conditions and click Next to select the actions, I do not have either option of 'notifying when read' or 'notifying when delivered.' Do you know why I do not have that option available and how I may be able to get it? Thanks,

    • Amy says:

      Pls disregard above. As I was trying to apply this to a shared mailbox, I was not clicking to apply rule on messages I send; I was selecting apply rule on messages I receive. When I click apply rule on messages I send, the notification check boxes are there in the list of actions I can choose from.

  45. Evan Fortier says:

    Getting know whether our emails have been opened or not to target hot prospects. Outlook email tracking is tough in comparison with Gmail because most tools provide Gmail tracking. But I have found very good tool for email tracking called SalesHandy.

  46. phanisai says:

    thanks for the inforamtion

  47. ezat says:

    hi ,
    I''m run my boss's email and when I send a an invitation in outlook 2013 he gett a message to inbox

  48. Amin says:

    As I checked I couldn't find anyway to give any permission to the people who are put in CC to see what has happened or resulted.
    So please let me know how to give permission to the CC people to see the results of tracking.
    thx in adv

  49. kuldeep ulhe says:

    How to track delivery and read receipts through excel from where I have used email ids..

  50. Dany Mathew says:

    I am getting read receipt but tracking tab is not working when the mail is triggered using Exchange Web Service code. When the mail is send manually from outlook i am getting read receipt and tracking option. Please let me know why we are facing this technical issue while sending the mail through code.

  51. Glenn says:

    I apologize if I missed there a way to get a copy of the original email along with read receipt?

  52. Joel says:


    I have sent some messages in the past that I did not select for tracking at the time but would like to know if they were delivered now. Is there a way to request a delivery receipt for these old messages even though they were not originally sent as tracked?

    Thank you,


  53. Tara says:

    i sent out a single mail to 1,xxx people with read receipt. is there any way to count the total of mail read and mail delete in single message sent?

  54. Sandy says:

    Is there a way onOutlook 2013 to be notified if someone bins the email you sent them without being read?

  55. Asiimwe Apollo says:

    Thanks, I found this article extremely useful.

  56. Kimaro says:

    How can i set my outlook to send message automatically to sender of e-mail that the message he/she sent have been received successfully.

  57. Franz Garcia says:

    Thanks for this article. It is very helpful. I have one question and it has been perplexing and maybe you can help me. One of my sender's tracking receipt responses is not updating correctly. He would send out an email with read receipt enabled and received read notifications, but when he checks the tracking read receipt in the Sent folder---only 1 person out of so many recipients shows in the Read column despite all the read notifications he received from all the recipients. Is there a way to update the tracking read receipt?? Or maybe configuration I am missing in the Outlook 2016? Your help is greatly appreciated. Thanks and have a great day!

  58. narsingh says:

    As discussed with you, Please find the below extra founded money & Sodexo details from vendor and same we hand over to you. Find the below details for your reference.

    Kindly knowledge for the same.

  59. narsingh says:

    how to send confirmation mail to this mail

  60. Misheck says:

    What if you are using a phone, how can you enable it.

  61. E. Perrault says:

    Of all the graphics I see in your article I see not one in my current version of Office Outlook which I believe is fairly current. I can't set up read receipts. It won't accept Boomerang. I have no Tracking function in my Mail > Options menu.

    All computers should be forced to use GMail.


  62. karen says:

    When I receive the delivery report, is that a GUARANTEE the recipient has received it. This person always says they dont get my emails even though I have a delivery report.

  63. Kathia Agrioyanis says:

    Hi. thanks for the valuable information. My question: is there a way to track or to know every time my emails are open or read? So not only the first time but every time they are read? Thanks very much in advance for your help on this!

  64. Azam Ejlali says:

    It was very useful, but how about the emails that have sent without these settings?

  65. Kathy says:

    If you archive a sent email before the recipient reads it, do you still get a read receipt when they read it?

  66. FRan says:

    i have outloo 2010 working in my environment, but i certain cases when an user send an email with a bunch of users group, receive an email that says

    " the user has been deleted the email"

    but cheching out the outlook of the user he receives the email and very funny because he don´t open the mail.

    can you help me where start?

  67. Patrick Buckley says:

    Thanks for the clear instruction that allowed me to double check whether I was using this option correctly, which I am. Unfortunately I am receiving no confirmations of either being received or read. What is going wrong?

  68. Ahmad Raza Murtaza says:

    Thank you so much for your contribution, This article helps me a lot even though in 2021, Thanks alot

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