I need to generate PDF documents with a PDF table of contents from Microsoft Word 2011.

The PDF table of contents can for example be viewed in Preview using View -> Table of Contents.

This works well on my Windows machine. I just:

  1. Select Save As > PDF
  2. Click Options
  3. Check the Create Bookmarks using headings check box.

But on Mac OS X this option is not available.

This has been asked multiple times before, for example here on SuperUser, but the only solution is to use the Windows version of Word, or using online tools like doc2pdf.

  • Adobe Acrobat, using an online tool, or using the Windows version of Word are apparently the only options. I ended up using the Windows version.
    – ante
    Nov 16, 2014 at 18:29

3 Answers 3


I think I should add that right now, for macOS, you can get this to work if you do Save As > PDF and then select Best for electronic distribution and accessibility.

enter image description here

Result: enter image description here

The option Best for printing does not produce the table of content in the PDF.


Word:Mac uses OS X's built-in PDF creator. Word for Windows either uses Adobe's PDF creator or its own (depending on which version of Word for Windows you're using), which is why the functionality is different between the two applications. OS X's built-in PDF creator doesn't do what you want.

If you have a license for Adobe Acrobat (not Acrobat Reader, but the full Acrobat), you can use Adobe's PDF creator.

Another option which others have reported having success with (and which doesn't require an expensive Acrobat license) is this:

  1. Save your Word document to your computer.
  2. Upload your Word document to Google Drive. Do NOT convert it to another format when you upload.
  3. Get the OpenAsPDF app. Its a Google Drive App.
  4. Open your Word document with OpenAsPDF app.
  5. Use the Save As dialogue to save back to your computer.
  6. Before saving, change the extension to .pdf.
  • I can't find the App OpenAsPDF. Can you please post a link to it?
    – ustroetz
    Oct 19, 2014 at 20:24
  • I'd say it's the openaspdf.com "Chrome" app that is mentioned there. Looks like a service to get a document from your HD or Google Drive and convert it. Probably a good option -- unless the document might be a bit sensitive - in that case I'd like to know a bit more about the overall proces...
    – JJarava
    Dec 12, 2014 at 15:22

I found an answer on another site that worked for me! If you have access to One Drive (which you should with an Office 365 subscription), do the following:

  • Upload your file there
  • Open it in the online Word viewer
  • File > Save As > Download as PDF.

Then your file will download with the table of contents intact on the PDF! The online PDF creation was a bit janky, it didn't work the first few times that I tried, so I hit File > Save As > Download a Copy, which downloaded it as a Word doc, then I tried Download as PDF and it worked!

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