Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Word 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Word, click here: Expanding Width of All Tables.

Expanding Width of All Tables

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated May 9, 2016)


If you have a document that contains quite a few tables, you may be searching for a way to modify the width of all the tables in the document. For instance, your company standards may require that all tables be the same width, extending from the left to the right margin. If you have forty or more tables in a document, modifying the width of them all, individually, can be very tedious.

The following macro, ResizeAllTables, will quickly do what it says—resize all tables. The widths of the tables are adjusted to fill the available margins.

Sub ResizeAllTables()
    Dim oTbl As Table
    For Each oTbl In ActiveDocument.Tables
        oTbl.AutoFitBehavior wdAutoFitFixed
        With ActiveDocument.PageSetup
            oTbl.PreferredWidth = .PageWidth - .LeftMargin - .RightMargin
        End With
    Next oTbl
End Sub

After the macro is complete, you should still examine each table to make sure that your column widths are appropriate for your data, but the overall width of the tables will be as you expected.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (1382) applies to Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Word (Word 2007 and later) here: Expanding Width of All Tables.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He  is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...


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What is four less than 8?

2017-02-20 19:44:00


I find that this doesn't work for tables within headers and footers. Is there a way to get the tables in headers/footers to update as well?


2016-11-05 09:54:25


Brilliant. Thanks so much. Been programming Excel VBA since 2009 but not done anything with Word. You've got me interested now though. Saved me a lot of time.


2015-02-01 15:39:42


Thank you so much, I had a table which have about more 50 tables. This really helps!

2014-06-13 13:45:06


This is really a great and easy to use macro!
Thank you for its creators! It really simplified my work a lot!

I was using it in MS Word 2007.

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