Calculating number of days between two dates – Excel Function Vs Common Sense


Business and every aspect of our life is about time and we have to compute days most often. To handle this Excel does provide a solution for in shape of a dedicated formula DAYS360(). And if you are an accountant you might have sprung half way and suspended there. Although accountants may accept 360 days help but it won’t be taken with a big grin on the face as majority of the calculations are based on 365 days. Reality is also that total number of days in a year are either 365 or 366 (in case of leap year). And the next thing you are looking for a function that is DAYS365 or a variation of DAYS360 function or a possibility to use DAYS360 function in combination with other formulae.

The problem with DAYS360 formula is that it not only assumes 360 days within a year but also 30 days a month which is not really true. February is no 30 days! And that can cause some serious confusion especially in accounting.

Well yes, there might be a way to use the dedicated DAYS360 function in Excel with another formula to calculate number of days between two dates. But there is one thing that is not common among common people called common sense. And it is often proved that common sense is better than straight sense.

Instead of looking for a formula to calculate days between two dates there is one ridiculously simple workaround to achieve the same. And that proves that Common sense + Excel > Functions + Excel

Common Sense + Excel = WINS!

  • Get the two dates between which you want to calculate number of days.
  • Have one date in one cell and have the second in another cell
  • In a third cell deduct the first cell from the second cell. And WOW! Result is exact number of days even adjusting for leap years. How simple was that.

Hence proved common sense wins!