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Re: Dependent Drop Down Lists / Limiting Lists

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4 - Data Explorer
4 - Data Explorer

Hi Support and Everyone,

I’m looking at creating dependent drop down lists and limiting the options for people to add other options, like how excel does it, but it seems I can’t do it in Airtable.

A/ Dependent Drop Down Lists
1/ Example of a dependent drop down list
A drop down list of Fruit => Select Apples => Drop down list = Granny Smith, Gala, Fuji, etc.

2/ Excel Way
Using the INDIRECT Function, we create lists with associated lists.

3/ Airtable Way?
Is there a simpler way to do this on air table?

B/ Limiting Drop Down Lists
1/ Example of a dependent drop down list
A drop down list of Fruit => Select Apples => Cannot add anything else in the drop down list

2/ Excel Way
Obviously this is a function that already is the weakness of excel, and the strength of Airtable, but I need to force other people to obey a few rules.

3/ Airtable Way?
Is there a way to do this on air table?

If you can offer any advice, that would be great. Thanks!

10 Replies 10
5 - Automation Enthusiast
5 - Automation Enthusiast

Wondering if there’s a way for columns to appear/disappear or gray out depending on a column selection. For example:


I’m creating an inventory of fountain pens and inks. Some columns are specific to other answers. In this sample, the # of cartridges column is only relevant when “Cartridge” is selected under the Type column. Is there a way to gray it out or have it automatically display an answer?

I think you can’t do that, but you could create a View filtering by Type, and and show/hide the # Cartriges field.

4 - Data Explorer
4 - Data Explorer

I’m looking for this exact same feature!

4 - Data Explorer
4 - Data Explorer

Same here. The usability of any database and form requires the user to establish relationships between cascading fields to ensure data validity. It seems every system like this stops at delivering this critical capability and thus limits the potential to build “anything” with data business rules. It would be really great to see Airtable take this on and revolutionize the market for complex form data entry without the need to develop and a traditional application. Great stuff here… Airtable is so close to answering the system of my dreams.

5 - Automation Enthusiast
5 - Automation Enthusiast

Been trying to figure this out myself. For a “database” tool, this should be a no brainer. I recommended Airtable in to a few friends, and this is a deal breaker. I can do it in Excel with some scripting, but trying to avoid this.

5 - Automation Enthusiast
5 - Automation Enthusiast

I have the same problem. I don’t know why there isn’t some way to do this. Hierarchical classification is a generic requirement.
I have to classify organisations by the RFCD (Research Field Course Discipline) schema. The unique field is a Subject Code. That is the value that has to go in the name (uniquely identifying), and shown as the linked attribute value. But there are hundreds. So they are grouped into disciplines, which are then grouped into Divisions. The user should be able to select a Division, then select the Disciplines in that Division then select the Subject in that Discipline.
Airtable seems to require that I hard code just one grouping/filter - which is useless.
Going the other way is not better. Even though I can group the RFCD codes usefully with expand-contract arrows, I would then have to give the user hundreds of organisations to choose from.

I am at a loss.

4 - Data Explorer
4 - Data Explorer

Hi ! Discovered Airtable a few weeks ago and felt in love with it : it does everything I’m looking for on a spreadsheet format with a DB powershoot :slightly_smiling_face: Well, almost… because I discovered that this dependant data validation / drop down dependant list feature is not (yet?) feasible with Airtable :frowning: Sorry I bump this topic back up but I see this has not been solved yet…

As others here, I’ve always used INDIRECT formula in XLS sheets to restrict values in validation cells (1 level) and it’s very usefull when you start linking tables… This missing feature makes it very much harder to sort things out in a linked way. As a matter of exemple, here is a short table made of what should be nice using the exemple of @Ivan_Ke.

This the only limit that I found so far and that might not let me use airtable on a pro-plan basis.
In understand that VALIDATION in Airtable is not cell-linked so that might not be possible but could you let us know if you’re working on this feature (Conditional multiple or single select) by any chance ?

Thanks anyway for this amazing job you’ve done so far, it’s much promising ! :clap:

7 - App Architect
7 - App Architect

Airtable rolled out “Dynamic Variables” to their automation “Find Records”. It enables you to set a condition as dynamic.

IF this were to be rolled out to the the linked record field type, you could accomplish this.
This functionality would look through values in the destination table and filter the linked record options for only those records which match the conditions.



please be sure to email this to to push them on this linked record feature

5 - Automation Enthusiast
5 - Automation Enthusiast


I believe that I found a way of doing this using Link to fields - nit as nice as the dropdown but I get this result.

Basically I create the dropdown in a specific table with the values that I don’t want people to change. Then I add a link to field in place of my previous dropdown. And then I make sure the table with the values is no longer editable by anyone, that nobody can add any values to it.

Let me know if that can work and/or if I should describe more.
There’s a possibility that editing table permissions is a paid feature though…