I created a Microsoft Word file with Office 2007 and exported it via Jaws PDF Creator. Now I want some bookmarks or any kind of "linking-action" that makes it easier to navigate through the document. My PDF viewer doesn't allow to create bookmarks in the free version, so I guess I need to handle this via Word! Maybe using a table of content? Anything that is recognized as PDF.

Edit: I realised it with using a table of content. It works fine, but that wasn't the solution I have been looking for. I like to have some bookmarks but my PDF creator doesn't take over the one I created in Word. I need to figure out how this could work.


8 Answers 8


This is easy to do in Word 2007 and 2010. You don't need any third party tools.

In Word 2007, you need the Microsoft PDF Add-In to allow you to save as PDF. Download it from here. In Word 2010 the Add-In is unnecessary.

  1. Open your document
  2. Mark the headings you want using the standard Heading 1, Heading 2, etc. styles. You can create a table of contents too, but you don't have to.
  3. Select Save As > PDF
  4. The first time you do this you have to set an option
    • Click Options
    • Check the Create Bookmarks using headings check box.
    • Click OK
  5. Click Publish

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  • 1
    works also for Word 2010 (you don't need the PDF plugin in 2010)
    – juFo
    Apr 16, 2012 at 10:10
  • 1
    I can't find this options in Word 2013.
    – Pedro77
    Oct 21, 2015 at 18:33
  • 1
    This also works without any plugin in Word 2016. (Export -- Options)
    – Legxis
    Mar 3, 2020 at 11:39

Use things such as a table of contents, and references in your Word file. Then get the add on to export to PDF. This should work just fine, see 2007 Microsoft Office Add-in: Microsoft Save as PDF.


The "right" way to do this is through tagged PDF. Go to Word' PDF conversion menu and mark "Accessible PDF" (this is what Word calls tagged PDF). The table of contents for the PDF you create should then be visible through decent PDF viewers.

This is really an SU question...

Postscript Check out http://www.webaim.org/techniques/acrobat/converting.php, which gives detailed instructions on how to do this.


GS4Word is the only free tool I know of that does this for older Word versions (Word 2003 and before). Did not test it for Word 2007, but I suspect the chances are not bad it will work. The site I linked to is in german, don't know if this is a problem for you.


Some advanced PDF viewers allow to manually add bookmarks to existing PDF files:

  • regarding the xchange viewer you need to use the pro version unless you like the oversized "this is a demo" remarks
    – wanderameise
    Jan 12, 2010 at 13:36

Try the free (and Free) OpenOffice.org. The PDF export there preserves bookmarks.


The situation has changed now. Word for Mac 2016 offers either creation of the PDF by your Mac 'best for print' (and still has these limitations because it uses the Mac PDF creator) but now offers create 'best for electronic distribution and accessibility' - this uploads the file to Microsoft and then downloads the PDF it creates - which does have all the Contents lists etc enabled.

I assume this is Microsoft's work around to the issue.


Only problem with the 'best for electronic distribution' option is that this removes any imbedded fonts. So for me thats even worse than not having the bookmarks working.

Its nightmare. Such a simple thing to get right. I hate microsoft products with a passion


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