Featured image: Gmail Attachment Size Limit- Easy Ways to Send Large Files

Gmail Attachment Size Limit: Easy Ways to Send Large Files

Picture this: you’ve just finished putting the final touches on an important presentation or a video compilation for your boss’s birthday. You’re excited to share it, but as you try to send it via Gmail, you’re hit with that dreaded message – “Attachment too large.” We’ve all been there, and it can be pretty frustrating. But fear not, in this article, we’ll explore the ins and outs of Gmail’s attachment size limits and reveal easy ways to send those hefty files without breaking a sweat.

We’ll start by examining the basics of attaching files in Gmail, then dive into the specifics of the 25MB limit. Finally, we’ll arm you with nifty techniques to bypass that pesky restriction, including using Google Drive links, compressing files into ZIP folders, using third-party file-sharing services, and even splitting your files across multiple emails.

How to Attach Files in Gmail

Attaching files in Gmail is a breeze, even for those who might not be as tech-savvy. Just follow these simple steps, and you’ll be sending files like a pro in no time!

Step 1: Compose a new email

First things first, open Gmail and click on the “Compose” button located at the top left corner of your screen. This will open a new email window where you can type your message, add recipients, and, of course, attach files.

Step 2: Choose the attachment method

There are two easy ways to attach a file to your email:

  • Drag and drop: Simply locate the file you want to send on your computer, then click and drag it into the body of the email. You’ll see a highlighted box with the text “Drop files here” – release your mouse button, and voilà! Your file is attached.
how to attach files in gmail using 'drop files here'
  • Use the paperclip icon: If you prefer a more traditional approach, click on the paperclip icon located at the bottom of the email window. This will open a file browser where you can navigate to the desired file, select it, and click “Open” to attach it to your email.
how to attach files in gmail using the paper clip icon

Step 3: Verify the attachment

After attaching your file, you should see a thumbnail preview of it below the email’s subject line. Make sure the correct file is attached and that it doesn’t exceed Gmail’s 25MB size limit (more on that later). If you need to remove the attachment for any reason, simply click the “X” next to the file preview. You’re ready to hit the send button.

Now that you’ve mastered the art of attaching files, let’s dive into the specifics of Gmail’s attachment size limit and learn some clever ways to send those larger-than-life files.

What is the Gmail Attachment Size Limit?

As you know by now, Gmail has a strict attachment size limit of 25MB per email. But why does this limit exist, and what exactly counts towards those precious megabytes?

Reason for the 25MB Limit

The main reason behind Gmail’s 25MB attachment size limit is to have smooth and efficient email delivery. Large attachments can clog up servers, slow down email delivery times, and even cause messages to bounce back if the recipient’s inbox can’t handle the file size. With a 25MB cap, Gmail helps maintain a speedy email service for everyone.

What is Included in the 25MB Limit?

Now, here’s where things get a bit tricky. The 25MB limit doesn’t just account for the raw size of your attached files – it also includes the overhead from encoding the attachments into a format suitable for email transmission.

When you attach a file to an email, it gets encoded using a method called Base64, which increases the file size by approximately 33%. Then, the actual maximum size of a file you can attach is closer to 18-20MB, depending on the file type and content.

Ways to Bypass the Gmail Attachment Size Limit

1. Include a Google Drive Link for Large Files

If you have files that exceed the 25MB size limit for Gmail attachments, you can include a link to your file on Google Drive. This way, the recipient can click on the link and access your file without having to download it as an attachment.

Gmail automatically starts uploading your file as a Google Drive link when its above 25 MB.

Gmail's automatatic Google Drive link for files larger than 25 mb

You may also upload files to Google Drive yourself first and then just add them as a link in your email. To do that, login to your Google Drive, upload your 25 MB+ file, and after it uploads, click “Share” in the top-right corner, and then copy the link.

File upload directly in Google Drive

2. Compress Your Files into a ZIP Folder

Compressing your files into a ZIP folder is another great way to bypass Gmail’s attachment size limit. You can use any of the many free online tools available to compress your files into a ZIP folder. MacOS software already comes included with the option to compress files.

file/folder compression in macos

Once compressed, you can attach the compressed file to your email and send it off without worrying about exceeding the size limit.

3. Use Third-Party File Sharing Services

Third-party online file sharing tools like Dropbox and WeTransfer are also great options for sending large files via email. These services allow you to upload large files and share them with others via links or email attachments. This makes it easy for you to bypass Gmail’s attachment size limit without having to worry about compressing or splitting up your files, you can even share links for large multiple files in one email.

4. Split Your File into Multiple Emails

If none of the above options work for you, then you can always split your file into multiple emails and send them separately. This may take some extra time but it will ensure that all of your data is sent in its entirety without having to worry about exceeding Gmail’s attachment size limit.

Although this method works, you’d be much better off using any of the first 3 options as they’re quicker, boost productivity, and don’t involve you having to split your content into different emails.

Email File Size Limits Wrap Up

Navigating the Gmail attachment limit can be a bit of a challenge, but with the tips and tricks provided in this article, you’ll be sending attachments like a pro in no time. Whether you choose to use Google Drive, compress your files, employ a large file-sharing service, or split your files across multiple emails, there’s a solution for every situation. So go forth and conquer the digital world, unencumbered by the constraints of Gmail’s size limits.

With your newfound expertise in sending large files and navigating the Gmail attachment limit, you might also be interested in learning how to organize your Gmail inbox for maximum efficiency. Taming your inbox can save you time and help you stay on top of important emails. So, check out our article on organizing your Gmail inbox like a pro.


You cannot directly increase the attachment size limit in Gmail. Instead, use alternative methods like Google Drive links, a ZIP file, a cloud storage service, or splitting files across multiple emails.

Currently, the attachment size limit per email is 25MB.

Gmail can receive and send attachments up to 25MB in size, including both the attached file(s) and the overhead from encoding the attachments for email transmission.

To bypass the Gmail attachment limit and send large files, consider using Google Drive links, compressing files into ZIP folders, using third-party large file sending services, or splitting your file into multiple emails.

Rukham Khan

Rukham Khan, is marketing writer and specialist. He writes about email, content, and lead generation tactics in an effort to help and inform entrepreneurs and small businesses. In his free time, you can find him playing squash or managing his personal blog on Medium.