Free Ways to Import MBOX File to Gmail

import mbox to gmail

September 14th, 2022 ~ File Management Tips, Gmail Tips ~ 5 Minutes Reading

Many internet users are searching for a way to import MBOX to Gmail email account. So, after researching the topic, we are here to help you solve this query by using the best free methods.

As we all know, Gmail is a widely used free web-based email application. It helps us manage our daily emails and other items like contacts, calendars, notes, etc. As well as provide additional functionality to consumers for smooth online communication.

Many people are considering switching from their existing email client to Gmail as a result of the advantages Gmail offers them.

Reasons to Import MBOX Files to Gmail

As mentioned above, Gmail is a popular cloud-based email client. That is why people are looking to import MBOX to Gmail. so, let’s examine some users’ queries.

“Hey, I am searching for a method to import my MBOX email to Gmail. I looked for a long time but was unable to find the ideal answer, so please advise on a possible alternative. – Kylie from USA”

“Hello I am rosy from Australia. Well, I have a large number of MBOX files that I would want to import into Gmail; thus, please offer some freeways for me– Rosy from Australia”

“Hi, I took backup of my Gmail account earlier using Takeout. It gave me an MBOX file. I would like to upload this MBOX file into another Gmail account. Is there a free method available for this?– Stephen from UK”

Manual Way to Import MBOX to Gmail for Free


  • Firstly, install Mozilla Thunderbird on your pc.
  • Allow IMAP for the Gmail account into which you wish to import the data.

I. How to Enable IMAP Access & Generate App Password?

After Google’s new announcement that Google’s less secure app will not work longer, users have to create an app password and use it rather than the normal password of a Gmail account for safety. Complete steps are mentioned below:

press the “Save Changes” icon

II. How to Configure Gmail account into Thunderbird

To easily upload MBOX emails to Gmail, we need the help of an MBOX email client. Here, we will use the free Mozilla Thunderbird application for this task.

  1. Open Mozilla Thunderbird and click on Email in Choose what to set up. If it is your first time opening Thunderbird, you will automatically get a window to set up an account.

    Open Mozilla Thunderbird

  2. Now enter the login details of the Gmail account that you want to add and click the Continue button.

    Now enter the login details

  3. Now choose the IMAP option and the “Done” button.

    choose the IMAP option and the “Done” button

III. Method to Download ImportExportTools NG Add-on

In Thunderbird, to easily import MBOX files to Gmail, one needs the help of an add-on. Here, we will tell you how to install this add-on on your system.

  1. In Thunderbird press on the 3-rows button from the right corner and choose the “Add-ons and Themes” option.

    In thunderbird press on the hamburger button

  2. Now, enter ImportExport in the search bar and press the Enter key.
  3. Click on the ImportExportTools NG option.

    search the ImportExportTools

  4. And press on “Add to Thunderbird”.

    And press on “Add to Thunderbird

  5. Now click on the “Install Now” option and restart the application.

How to Import MBOX to Gmail Account Using Thunderbird

You can easily import MBOX files in Mozilla Thunderbird as it provides such a functionality. All it requires is the free add-on tool.

What we have done till now (required for importing MBOX in Gmail):

  • Configure Gmail in Thunderbird.
  • Install ImportExportTools NG Add-on.

Next, Step-by-Step Method to Upload MBOX Emails to Gmail

MBOX files cannot be directly imported in an IMAP account and we configured Gmail account using IMAP previously. Therefore, we will import MBOX to Local folders first, then move the emails to the Gmail mailbox.

  1. In Thunderbird, select Local Folders from the left-side panel.
  2. Click on ALT and choose “ImportExportTools NG >> Import mbox file.

    import mbox to local folders

  3. Select the option Import directly one or more MBOX files from the drop-down and click OK.

    Press on the open button

  4. Select the MBOX file(s) and press “Open”. The MBOX file would be loaded into Thunderbird Local Folders with a similar label.

    Press on the open button

  5. Click and drag the exported data into the label’s area underneath your Gmail Account’s label part to complete the import.
  6. Congratulations, importing MBOX into Gmail account is now successfully completed. You can open the account on your web browser to view your MBOX file content.

Note: If you are unable to locate the imported data in Gmail account (Mozilla Thunderbird), you may attempt restarting the application.

Please exercise caution while using the manual approach, since although manual methods are effective, they have certain limits and constraints. After all, manual methods are long and time-consuming procedures, and one incorrect step may result in the loss of your data.



Here, we discussed the manual methods to import MBOX files to Gmail account step by step. Also, as previously said, manual techniques have certain limitations. Thus, if you are comfortable and willing to take a risk with manual ways, you should do so; otherwise, you should use a third-party tool instead of manual methods.