The 10 Best Free Alternatives to Microsoft Visio [February 2021]

Visio is terrific for creating organization charts, workflow charts, and many other kinds of graphics. For many users, the app is essential, allowing for quickly-drawn flowcharts, control diagrams, and more, while also integrating directly into PowerPoint.  If you need a diagram made quickly, chances are you’ll be using Visio to make your chart.

However, because Visio is part of the Office suite, it’s an expensive program if you don’t already have access to it. You either have to buy Office 2019, sign up for Microsoft’s Office 365 subscription service to use the product, or subscribe to a standalone Visio Online subscription. In addition, there is no version of Visio for Mac OS X, so Mac users are locked out of the platform unless they’re working from the web. While Microsoft does offer a free Visio Viewer application, allowing users to view and comment on Visio files, there’s no free plan to speak of.

If you don’t have access to Visio, or if you just want to try something different, there are a number of alternatives to try out on your PC. Visio alternatives are a dime a dozen online, but not every application is created equally. Here’s our picks for the best Visio alternatives in 2021.

6 thoughts on “The 10 Best Free Alternatives to Microsoft Visio [February 2021]”

Helen Phillips says:
Is there a best option for drawing business process maps or using swim lanes?
Jeff Donkers says:
I’ve just been using a trial version of LucidCharts. I found the webbased software really good and although I didn’t make what you are looking for, I did see examples. LucidCharts also have very good tutorials. I also liked the possibility to have a connection to excel or google sheets (in latter case live) to populate /update the info in the lucidchart boxes. It is also very easy to navigate around the window using the mouse and ALT & CTRL keys. Some other programs require you to click on a Pan or Zoom button which I found a pain. It’s not the cheapest Visio alternative, but it does a lot really well. We have several users in-house, but we’ve created a dedicated user name so that others can use the software (but not concurrently).
David White says:
If I’m looking to do home plans (floorplans and appliances, furniture, etc.), which of these is the best alternative?
Joeke van der Velde says:
I’m using “Sweet Home 3D”.
Wonderful tool for floorplans.
Echo Lee says:
Hi there, I’m Echo from Wondershare and we just released an excellent visio alternative software Edraw Max, Would you like to check and list us into the article? thanks.
Menac Tsa says:
Your product is NOT free. It works not be mentioned or listed here.
Sarah says:
I don’t find Google’s Draw good enough to use as a replacement. It is limited to a single sheet and the symbols and connectors are pretty minimal. For example, there is no option to attach text to a connector, or to have a curved connector with an arrow.

I am curently using LucidChart’s free version, which is better than Draw. The Entity diagram is actually better than Visio’s latest, which doesn’t allow you to save the tables and field lists.

Victor Wachanga says:
I’ve used Draw.IO just today. You can attach text to a connector by simply double-clicking on it. To make a curved connector with an arrow, select the arrow from the collection and double-click on it to create extra pivot points. I do agree Lucidchart is great!
Elik says:
Does any of the above options support visio files?
in other words, if I have collected through the years specific shapes, can I re-use these in one of the above options?


Michael White says:
I’d like to know the answer to this question as well.

Mike W.

John Sloat says:
Hi there, I work at Ardoq. I’m sorry to say that we have recently switched from offering a free plan to a 30-day trial. Please feel free to remove us from this list so readers are not misinformed.

John Sloat

Christopher Dean Carney says:
That sucks! One less company to use.

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