Here’s how export your data from Things 3 on Mac and iOS.

Get the Things 3 database file

In accordance with GDPR, you can access your data in the form of an industry-standard SQLite database file, which includes every piece of information about your to-dos. This format is machine-readable, not human-readable. To learn more about SQLite, check out the official SQLite website.

Here’s how to get the database file (Things 3.13.1 or later):

  1. On your Mac, quit Things 3. The app must not be running before you proceed.
  2. In your Dock, click Finder.
  3. In the menu bar at the top of your screen, click GoGo to Folder.
  4. Paste the following path into the sheet that appears: ~/Library/Group Containers/
  5. Hit the Return key.
  6. Open the folder ThingsData-xxxxx.
  7. Copy – don’t move! – the bundle Things Database.thingsdatabase to where you’d like to keep it.

The actual database is contained within the Things Database.thingsdatabase bundle. To access it, CTRL + click on the bundle and select Show Package Contents. The file called main.sqlite contains your data.

If you’re using Things 3.13 or older, the file you’re getting is called Things.sqlite3 and it can be viewed in a separate app as explained below.

iPad & iPhone
  1. Open Things 3.
  2. Go to Settings.
  3. Tap GeneralDiagnosticsEnter Code.
  4. Enter the code 491348
  5. Tap Send Things Database.

The file you’re getting is called Things Database.aar. We recommend that you save the file into iCloud Drive, or, if you own a Mac, we suggest you select to AirDrop it to your Mac as it is the most secure way of transmitting the data.

If you do not own a Mac, you can only unpack the .aar file on your iPhone or iPad. Locate it where you saved it in iCloud Drive and tap it once. That will produce Things Database.thingsdatabase which contains the actual database file.

If you are on iOS 13 or older, the file you’re getting is called Things.sqlite3 and it can be viewed in a separate app as explained below.


In Things for Vision, please follow the same steps as described in the iPad & iPhone tab above.

To view the data in the SQLite file you need a viewer application. One we like to use ourselves is Base 2. It has a free trial available, and of course there are other applications out there which are free of charge.

Print to PDF (Mac only)

If you’re looking for a non-technical solution to get your data out of Things 3, the easiest path forward would be to simply print all of your lists to PDF. You will be able to search the PDF for keywords, as well as select text inside of the PDF files to copy and paste into other apps.

  1. On your Mac, open Things 3.
  2. In the menu bar at the top of your screen, click FilePrint.
  3. Set Scope to Entire List.
  4. Set Notes to Full.
  5. Click Print.
  6. A new window will open. At the bottom, click PDFSave as PDF.
  7. Name the PDF file with the name of the list you are printing from.

To make sure that you won’t miss anything, we recommend you print each list separately, starting with the default lists and then going through all your Areas as well as Projects. Even though this will duplicate some of the content, it will also ensure that everything is included in your PDF files.

If you only have the iOS apps, this print option will not be available to you, sorry. In case you have access to a Mac, you can install a Things 3 trial version, connect it to your Things Cloud account to download your data, and then print it from the Mac trial app.

Access data through Apple Shortcuts

If you’re familiar with Apple Shortcuts, you can use actions to get data out of Things. We do not provide a shortcut for this, so you would need to write your own. See our technical documentation.

Access data through AppleScript (Mac only)

If you are familiar with AppleScript, you can write your own script to access the data in Things 3 on your Mac. You can download the documentation here.