Using bookings for events at specific times

Brass Contributor

HI, Bookings might not be the right tool for this task but I want to check.


I plan to run small online webinars for colleagues and I'd like to list the events so they can book an event to suit them. I need to limit the number, so a normal meeting invite doesn't work (unless someone has a useful work around for that?) Some events will repeat, so I'd set a few occasions for some.


Is there an easy way to set the time/s as a service, or do I need to set very limited working hours and block out my diary for all but the times I want to hold the event?


Or is there another simple tool I could use? I know I could create free Eventbrite listings but I don't want them to be openly available or put in as much detail as a listing site would need. 


Thank you in advance

29 Replies


Looks like if you uncheck "use the default scheduling policy" on the setup page of an individual service, you can then adjust the time/date/recurrence of the events. With limiting the number of folks who can schedule, you can pretty much make an event schedule. From what I can tell. 

Were you able to accomplish this? I have up until the point where I am forced for a recurring schedule each week. I simply want the "service" to only be allowed the exact date(s)/time(s) I assign. I am not sure why this is so difficult.
No, I never found a solution with this app which is shame. I ended up using Appointedd which is good but has far more features than I need and has a monthly fee.

All I really need is a way to cap how many people can accept a meeting invite in Outlook. I looked at options for this but wasn't prepared to put time into writing code which seemed the only solution.

If anyone has the time and ability to create a plugin for this I'd be hugely grateful!

If in the meantime anyone else has found an answer I'd love to know.
I appreciate your quick response. If I ever find a way around this I will be sure to let you know.
I think you could try the following:
* create 1 service per type of event, and be careful to make it a group event by selecting the max number of participants FIRST before saving the new service (this is a known bug I found somewhere on this forum already). This satisfies the max number of invites/attendees constraint.
* edit the service availability to not use the standard planning policy as follows:
** set recurring weekly hours for the times you want the event to be available AND
** set availability in a custom date range: set multiple date ranges of a single day where you would have the event

The combination of these should more or less match your use case. However it does mean that your recurring events will have the same possible start times.
I hope this can help. Or I might have misunderstood your case, which is entirely possible :)

@fiterbek that is almost there, but the pattern isn't recurring on a weekly basis as it is about once each month.


I'll see if I can set my diary that only those time slots are free, as I don't have any other software that works with my free/available time and that might be the workaround. Or a calendar just for Bookings that only has free time in the slots I want to allow bookings in.


Thank you so much for your detailed reply, it is much appreciated.


I can't be the only one with this sort of request. A small business booking slots at an exhibition or conference, or a yoga teacher who had holiday weeks, would have the same dilemma. 

I think I might have solved this. It takes a bit of tweaking, and is helped by adding Bookings to your Teams account - it doesn't show up as an App for me on the desktop version but does in the browser.

You need to play with the settings for staff, but by only having my availability for a service on certain days and limited times, I can then block out availability using the Add time off option, and blocking out the days when I'm not running an event.

I also set up a calendar just for the bookings, and made sure that I unticked "events on office calendar affect availability" in the settings for me as a staff member.

Not perfect, as I can only have one event on any day, but using the month view for the calendar (top right) it is easy ot block out non-event days.

Thanks for the help!
I'm glad you solved your problem!
This is kind of the same way I intended, as the combination of 'recurring weekly hours' coupled with limiting the general availability to specific days means the recurring weekly hours are not really recurring weekly, only recurring on the days you explicitly set as available. In my proposed solution this is done via the service availability but you managed to do more or less the same using staff hours and off times, which I guess is equivalent if you are the only staff.
hi guys, I am having the exact same problem. I want to set some specific dates to sign up for courses. it seems impossible! I found a workaround to set it for one date but not for several.

My work around for one specific date is:

- Set specific date range to that one day
- set times to "when available"
- block the times I don't want the course to happen in the calendar.

Pretty stupid to do it like this. But there doesn't seem another way...
I thought we could get rid of Doodle... but it seems like Bookings is not made for this! Microsoft pleas add this features!

Having the exact same issue as you guys! :( I'm using Bookings as an internal Training Calendar and Teams Webinar sessions.

Want to be able to just schedule a date and time for a course and allow people to select the service on the bookings page and book on the course until availability is full.

However the scheduling conflicts and other available time slots appear - We rely on calendars so much in the business, it's not a sensible solution to just block out the time around it so the course looks correct on Bookings, because then people can't get into my or my other trainers diaries for normally meetings etc.

Seems odd that you can't have a service and just schedule it for a one off set time when some of Microsofts literature talks as though it can be used for scheduling internal things such as this but really, it's a acting like a bog standard 'Appointment' booking system :(

Hopefully a few others find this and boost it up so it can be something they look into! Thanks for sharing your workaround thus far @ClaireThirlwall  @digihandle  :)

Thanks, J

@JessicaBenjamin - I'm glad it isn't just me. I've used the workaround but like you mention it means my diary looks like I'm not available, which then means other scheduling tools don't work as effectively. It would be great if Microsoft could make this a useable feature, i.e. one off bookable in house events with a limit on numbers.
100% a need for me and my organisation.

Thank you for describing this need so clearly and for providing a way for others to nudge the Microsoft product team to invest in developing this essential functionality.
I think this might be what you are after. - Setting Up Group Events in Microsoft Bookings

I found the solution for this problem, I think. First you must create a new Bookings-calender. When you create a new service, you choose for a maximum number of participants. This maximum of participants is for each meeting. For example, when you set the maximum at 2 and you have three different timeslots and one if the timeslots are two times booked it will nog be displayed anymore as a booking option.

At the settings in the reservation page, you must turn the allow customers to choose a specific person for the reservation off. Choose at the general availability for not available. Now you can add the options for the booking timeslots of your meetings. For each day and timeslot, you must add an availability option. 


In this solution you only show the specific times and dates for your events as an optuon to book and is it also possible to have a maximum participants for eacht meeting.

I am new to Bookings, but this is not intuitive. I feel like I've tried every combination of options. I want to schedule time slots of 10min on 1 day for any member of our team. 1 customer per time slot. If anyone figures this out please provide the exact steps - everyone's general comments are not really helpful in getting this to work.
@LauraFothergill This seems like a basic Bookings use case. In a new/blank booking agenda:
* Configure the business working hours in the Business Information config options.
* Add all off the team staff members using the Staff config options, and you probably want to check the box that tells Bookings to check their availability with their personal calendar
* Using the Reservation Page options, set the standard time intervals for the public reservation page to 10 minutes, set the availability setting for the page to 'Available to anyone' and publish your booking calendar.
* Add your 1 service and set the duration to 10min. Add all of the staff to it. Leave all the rest on defaults.

This is assuming you only have one type of appointment (service) and all team members can be booked for this.

Hope this helps.

you will need to limit the maximum lead time if it's a one-time event @ClaireThirlwall 

if i am offering a session next week, i will limit the max lead time to 9 days so the (recurring weekly) is not activiated.

you will need to limit the maximum lead time if it's a one-time event

if i am offering a session next week, i will limit the max lead time to 9 days so the (recurring weekly) is not activiated.

I have read through all of these and still don't see what I would think would be a simplistic feature I can use for the following. Any help is appreciated! :smile:


I have a 1 hour event set up using custom times. It has a max of 7 attendees and it recurs every week at the same 5 times (lets just say its Wednesdays at 10, 12, and 2:00 and Thursdays at 2 and 4:00). I am the only "staff" assigned to this service. The recurrence goes out for an entire year, so I obviously don't know my vacation schedule etc. that far in advance. 

If I go in to my work calendar and schedule PTO for an entire week 3 months out, I am still able to book a spot in any of the 5 scheduled events that week even though my work calendar says I am out of office. 

I clicked the option for it to look at the staff's personal calendar, but it still allows me to book on dates when I am out of office on my work calendar. 

Anyone have any insights on this? 

@BillGates (hahahaha)