I am trying to import an Excel CSV into InDesign Data Merge. Everytime I try to export the csv, it appears in Data Merge as only one field, with fields separated by semicolons, although in Excel I have multiple, comma separated fields.

I've done this plenty of times and have never experienced this problem. I have checked the language and regional settings on my laptop and these are set as comma separated. I've tried to use a txt file version, but Indesign won't accept it. I am now very much stuck! any suggestions?

  • After changing in Region setting did you restarted Windows? After that check if the "comma" use is saved. Mar 1, 2017 at 12:07

2 Answers 2


Your problem is that Excel uses semi-colon separators when InDesign looks for comas. Prefer tabbed text format on export and everything will be fine ;)


Drop your CSV into a text editor and replace all ; with ,. Here's a sample of a CSV i recently used to build a photo grid in InDesign. So make sure you have commas everywhere separating the values, otherwise it doesn't work.


Note: CSV actually stands for Comma-Separated Values, so i really don't see why Excel saves CSV with the ; separator.

  • 2
    It's a windows language issue. For unknown reasons not English US versions of Windows (regional) are set to use semi-colon instead of comma as a separator. And Excel is too much related to Win to be able to force use of comma in CSV. Mar 1, 2017 at 12:06

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