I'm currently wrestling with the built-in Mac calendar app and am looking for an alternative calendar app that:

  • makes it way easier to setup "complicated custom events"
  • supports Mac OS X El Capitan
  • Allows exporting to the default calendar app, OR has a native iOS app and web interface that I can use
  • (I would also prefer not to store my information on anyones but Apple's servers if possible)

The problem: I would like to always maintain a decently-updated calendar so I can check if I am available to go out with a friend at X time (or whatever). However, my school has an A/B schedule and I am finding it a pain in the butt to have an an appropriate amount of time blocked out on my calendar for school each day, depending on my early releases etc.

I currently have an early release on A day (A and B days alternate every school day) and the whole school gets out 30 min early on Thursday. Is there an app that would allow me to get something like this setup and then export it to calendar so I don't have to manually add every day at the start of the year or just block out the same times every day (inaccurate)?

2 Answers 2



Fantastical.app is a really nice alternative to the standard Calendar app on mac. Please note, though, that it is not a free alternative. At 50$, it is not even a cheap one. But it is indeed very powerful.

It has :

  • a very complete interface for your complex events (recurring, and the like).
  • it works with the calendar "account" you configure for it. The events you set with this app will be replicated on every other calendar app that shares the same account (including the one on your phone). It also offers an iPhone app that you can find here or on the App Store.
  • As far as I know, this company doesn't keep your data on their servers. They don't need it to make the app work (it uses your existing calendar account).

In addition to that, it has many nice features including :

  • a "natural language" input style for basic events. Hit the shortcut, type "coffee with Jeff at 3PM tomorrow" and the event is ready to be saved.
  • a simpler version that sits in the menu bar and lets you preview the events of the current month.

They offer a 21-days trial so you should be able to check that it meets your needs. In fact, if you wanted, you could just use the trial to set up your complex events and never use it again : the events will stay in your calendar. I think you may end up liking it though.


I use Calendar 2. The basic app is free but some features require you purchase an upgrade. Calendar 2 uses the Macs Calendar but places an icon on the toolbar for easy opening. It has its own display window and uses the info from Calendar for its display.

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