How do I search for messages with attachments in Gmail?

search for messages with attachments in Gmail
Unattached: you can narrow down Gmail searches

Gmail search is wonderful, arguably the best thing about Google’s webmail service. (Which is only to be expected given Google’s day job.) But what if you only want to search for messages with attachments in Gmail? It’s not immediately obvious how to do it. Let us give you a helping hand.

Search for messages with attachments in Gmail

There are a couple of ways to tackle this problem.

The first and easiest option is to trigger the well-hidden advanced search features. In the search box at the top of the Gmail window, click the down arrow. This will reveal a panel showing a host of advanced search options, including searching for message by sender, subject or date. This box also includes a tick box for “has attachment”. Click that and hit the magnifying glass and Gmail will now only show messages with attachments. You can, of course, narrow the search down further using the other search fields.

Gmail advanced search

The other way to search for messages with attachments is to enter a phrase into the search box. Say, for example, you wanted to search for an invoice that was sent to your Gmail inbox. You can enter the following search term into the Gmail search box:

has:attachment invoice

This will only return emails containing the word invoice that have an attachment, which should sufficiently narrow down your search.

Now read this: How can I set up a professional email address for free using Gmail?


About the author

Barry Collins

Barry has scribbled about tech for almost 20 years for The Sunday Times, PC Pro, WebUser, Which? and many others. He was once Deputy Editor of Mail Online and remains in therapy to this day. Email Barry at

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