When we think of someone’s birthday, we think of a day of celebration of that person — one where they are showered with well wishes, cards, gifts, a party with friends and loved ones, or all of the above!

While our current birthday traditions were not always the norm, nowadays, recognizing and participating in a birthday celebration is kind of a big deal.

With all the information thrown at us daily, along with balancing family and work, and social schedules, it’s easy to get swept up and forget someone’s special day. This may result in sending a late email, social media post, or rush to the “Belated Birthday” card section of your local gift shop. However, using a few simple tips in Fantastical and Cardhop, whether you’re planning to go all out to celebrate a birthday or simply want to share a message to let someone know you’re thinking of them, you’ll never miss a birthday again!

Birthdays Basics with Fantastical

When first installing Fantastical on Mac or iOS, it will ask for permission to access your contacts; this allows Fantastical to be used for various features, including birthdays! If you don’t grant permissions for contacts, then you’ll miss out on Birthday displays, as well as the ability for Fantastical to use contacts for event invites. If you change your mind and decide you want to use these features you can go to System Preferences > Security and Privacy > Contacts on Mac, and Settings > Privacy > Contacts on iOS to enable permissions here. Some birthday information will also be pulled by Fantastical from the calendar account you add directly to the app.

In the screenshots below, contacts with birthdays from a Google calendar account are showing in green (green is the nice bright color I’ve chosen for that calendar), but this can be disabled if you’d rather stick to the macOS/iOS Contacts data alone.

Birthdays from the contacts app will show with a present icon and the birthday person’s name next to it. If you click the birthday it’ll show a festive animation along with your contacts’ birthday details. It’ll also prompt you some options to get in touch if you’d like to send a birthday message!

When viewing “All Calendars” you’ll automatically see contacts’ birthdays in your Fantastical calendar (if permissions have been granted).

Fantastical Birthday Tips

If you have a busy work and/or personal schedule, there are also a couple of options to make sure your contacts’ birthdays are not missed, whether you’re using Fantastical on Mac or an iOS device.

The first tip is to have your contacts added under a specific Calendar Set. This way you can quickly check your designated “Birthday” calendar whenever you need to. You can use this tip with any calendar view, but we recommend the month view, since it gives an overview of all the birthdays in that timeframe. If you have a particular month with loads of birthdays to keep track of, then using a “Birthdays” calendar set will make sure these special days are not only kept separate, but also easy to see (in whichever view you choose), and then they won’t get lost in the hustle and bustle of daily life.

The second tip is to duplicate the birthday into an event or task, which also works nicely if you’re planning a party or would like another reminder to send a birthday card! You can do this by right clicking on the birthday > Duplicate (for an event) or Duplicate as Task on Mac. While on iOS devices, tap and hold on the birthday for a few seconds and a menu should pop up with the Duplicate option. The added benefit of adding an additional event or task for the birthday is that you can set up extra alerts to make sure you’re notified — note alerts for tasks will depend on the account type you use.

Also, you can’t really talk about birthdays and not think of a par-TAY! 🎉 If you love to throw big birthday celebrations, there are also a few Fantastical features to help with scheduling that Birthday bash! If you know who you’d like to invite and their schedules beforehand, you can simply create a birthday event and add partygoers as invitees.

However, if you’re dealing with many people and/or chaotic schedules, why not utilize the Proposals feature in Fantastical and easily find a date that works for everyone?

Birthdays with Cardhop

Cardhop works with your system contacts, and from the accounts you add to it, so all your contacts’ birthdays will be sourced from there. Of course, if you add a contact and their birthday information directly to Cardhop, it will be synced to your contacts account.

To make life super easy, there is already a designated “Birthdays” list in the Cardhop’s sidebar. Simply click this to see a list of your upcoming birthdays that Cardhop has pulled from your contacts. Even if you’re using a compacted view of Cardhop, it is easy to select the Birthdays list!

If you click a contact from the Birthday list, you’ll see that contact’s details, as well as options to message, call, email, or invite them. If you choose to send an invite, then you’ll be taken to Fantastical to create an event with them as an invitee.

Cardhop on iOS also gives you the same quick list and views for Birthdays. Additionally, if you go to Cardhop > Settings, you can enable and set “Birthday Notifications” for Cardhop as well. Even better, if you use specific groups to organize your contacts in Cardhop, and have for example a “Family” or “Friends” group, you can choose to set alerts for those designated groups.

Don’t forget Widgets!

There are also specific “Birthdays” widgets that you can use for Cardhop and Fantastical, on both Mac and iOS! You have a choice of widgets, and can choose from small, medium and large widgets. In Cardhop, the Small Widget will show the next upcoming birthday with more details, such as that contact’s image. While Medium and Large widgets will give you a list of upcoming birthdays.

In Fantastical, if you choose the Event List Widget option, you’ll see your contact’s upcoming birthday as well!

By enabling these widgets you’ll get a quick, compact view of your contacts’ Birthdays! Widgets will help keep these dates at the forefront of your daily information.

Whether you’d like to set a host of alerts or choose to set up and utilize just a few of the choice features we went over here, hopefully the tips I’ve shared will help you explore ways to avoid forgotten birthdays! Of course, features like Calendar Sets, Proposals, and Widgets can be set up in other ways, so if you haven’t explored these useful features yet, you can practice with Birthdays and then consider other ways to implement them for your own scheduling needs!

Feel free to shoot our support team an email if you have any questions, and thanks for checking out the Flexireads blog. See you soon! 🎉