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

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

Visio is great for making organization charts, workflow charts, and other graphics. It’s a must-have for many people because it allows you to create flowcharts and control diagrams quickly. Plus, it integrates seamlessly with PowerPoint. If you need to make a diagram in a hurry, Visio is the way to go.

However, Visio is part of the Office suite, so it can be expensive if you don’t already have it. You have to buy Office 2019, sign up for Microsoft’s Office 365 subscription, or get a standalone Visio Online subscription. Also, Visio isn’t available for Mac OS X, so Mac users can’t use it unless they are working online. Microsoft does offer a free Visio Viewer, which lets you view and comment on Visio files, but there’s no free plan for creating diagrams.

If you don’t have Visio or simply want to try something different, there are plenty of alternatives to choose from. Online, you can find many Visio alternatives, but not all of them are created equal. Here are our top picks for the best Visio alternatives in 2021.

Like most free alternatives, doesn’t require you to download any software. It works right in your web browser, which makes it convenient for users of Mac, Windows, and Chrome OS. This is especially useful for business users who prefer Chrome OS. may not have all the advanced features of dedicated applications like Visio, but it has full cloud support. You can sync your diagrams with Google Drive, Dropbox, and even Github. When you sign in to your cloud account, provides templates to help you design your diagrams. If you prefer, you can also start with a blank diagram.

Once you’ve chosen your template, using is surprisingly easy. The user interface looks almost exactly like Google Drive (as long as you choose Drive as your storage option), and rearranging your flowchart or diagram with the built-in tools is really simple. You can easily delete or add modules to your flowchart, and editing existing flowcharts is just a few button clicks away. You can move every box on the page outlined with a grid, and your arrows will automatically adjust as you modify your chart to fit your needs. Plus, lets you import files from Visio, so you can still use your old VSDX files without having to pay for an expensive subscription service.

When you’re done with your diagram, you can save it directly to your chosen cloud service, and you can export it as a PDF, SVG, PNG, or XML file. Overall, may not be the most powerful alternative to Visio, but for quick and simple diagrams, it’s a completely free service that works well with Google Drive and other cloud-based services.


Lucidchart is another web-based option to replace Visio, like, but with more of a focus on enterprise use. Instead of using your preferred cloud storage client, Lucidchart has its own user interface, which looks sleek and professional while still being functional. When you create an account with Lucidchart, or log in with your Google or Office 365 account, you’ll be asked a few questions to tailor your experience with the app based on your level of expertise. Whether you’re a student, teacher, IT professional, or in marketing and sales, Lucidchart has options to help you get comfortable with the app quickly.

Once you’re inside the Lucidchart interface, you’ll quickly feel comfortable. One of the best things about Lucidchart is that it lets you import your old Visio documents, so you can keep working on your projects even if you used to be a Visio user. If you’re starting fresh, the app also offers a bunch of attractive templates to help you start your diagram on the right foot. Sharing your Lucidchart documents with others is easy, and you have control over whether they can edit or just view the document.

Of course, there are some limitations to being a free user with Lucidchart. You can only have up to three active documents at a time. You can delete documents when you’re finished and export your final projects, or you can simply wait a full month and Lucidchart will add another document to your account for free.

It’s also worth mentioning that there’s a limit on the number of items you can have in a single flowchart, and premium members get access to a built-in presentation mode. All in all, even with the limitations for free users, Lucidchart is a fantastic web-based alternative for Visio users. But it’s important to note that the paid options can get pretty expensive compared to a standard Office 365 membership.

OpenOffice Draw

OpenOffice has been a popular alternative to Microsoft Office since it debuted in 2002 and was originally released by Sun Microsystems. Even though the original closed down in 2011, the app was bought by Apache and has since been free and open-source, allowing users all over the world to keep using and improving the application. Although OpenOffice has had some trouble attracting developers, it’s still undeniably popular under Apache, with over 100,000 downloads per day. Now, the OpenOffice platform includes a free replacement for Visio, and anyone who used to use Visio will feel right at home with Apache’s Draw software.

I’m here to talk to you about Draw, a fantastic tool that lets you create plans, diagrams, and flowcharts for presentations or just for your own use. It’s a simple app that uses shapes, text, colors, and lines to create professional-looking flowcharts. While it may not be as fancy as the newer versions of Visio, you can still create clean and neat diagrams using Draw.

What’s great about Draw is that it has a user interface that is very similar to Microsoft Visio. So, if you’re used to working with Office, you’ll feel right at home with Draw. And the best part? You don’t have to pay a dime to use it! Plus, if you’re coming from Visio, you can easily open and edit your old VSD or VSDX files in LibreOffice’s app.

Just like the rest of OpenOffice, Draw is completely free and there are no annoying ads or trial limitations to deal with. However, there is one downside – Draw is not a web-based app, which means you’ll need to download the OpenOffice suite to your computer in order to use Draw. Unfortunately, this means that Chrome OS users are out of luck. But don’t worry, Apache has clients available for Mac, Windows, and Linux, so you can easily find the version that suits you best online.

Now, let’s talk about LibreOffice Draw.

LibreOffice has a similar background to Apache OpenOffice, as both of these apps originated from Like OpenOffice, LibreOffice is a free and open-source alternative to Office that can be used on Windows, Mac, and Linux. Since its launch in 2010, LibreOffice has been downloaded by over a hundred million people, and it’s not hard to see why. It’s a powerful suite of applications that’s completely free, making it a great choice for anyone who wants to replace their current Office software. And if you’re specifically looking for a replacement for Visio, LibreOffice Draw is the perfect option. With it, you can effortlessly create charts and diagrams without having to pay for an Office 365 membership.

Hey there! Let’s talk about Draw, a cool vector graphics editor that lets you create diagrams and images for productivity tracking. Now, don’t get confused with the OpenOffice app that goes by the same name! Draw looks quite similar to both Visio and OpenOffice Draw, which means you can jump right in and start working within minutes. It’s super user-friendly!

One of the great features of Draw is its smart connectors. You can easily form connections between shapes and other objects, all while setting your very own “glue points” for lines. Plus, tracking points and objects is a breeze. Oh, and did I mention that Draw can also work as a PDF editor? Cool, huh?

But there’s one slight downside to LibreOffice Draw – it may look a bit outdated compared to OpenOffice Draw. Nevertheless, it’s still a fantastic free alternative to Visio. Actually, given the lack of progress on OpenOffice updates, some might say it’s even better than OpenOffice Draw.

Let me introduce you to Gliffy!

Okay, I admit, the name might sound silly, but trust me, Gliffy is a fantastic little tool for creating diagrams. The best part? It works right in your browser! So whether you’re on your computer or mobile device, you can easily use this web app to create stunning and functional diagrams.

Gliffy is lightning fast, allowing you to effortlessly drag and drop objects on your work area. You can track all changes within the app and even revert them if needed. And to make things even better, you can customize themes and colors within the app itself. Your work will look clean, professional, and yes, even fun! No more boring or ugly diagrams.

And guess what? Gliffy integrates with Google Drive, so you can save your work on the go and present it whenever and wherever you want. Pretty nifty, right?

So, here’s the deal with Gliffy. It’s this really cool web app that you don’t have to download or update. It’s all right there in your browser. But here’s the downside – it’s not free forever. They give you a 14-day trial, but after that, you gotta pay $7.99 a month. Now, I don’t know about you, but that seems kinda pricey. I mean, think about it. Office 365 is a dollar cheaper per month and it gives you the whole Microsoft Office Suite.

Now let’s talk about Creately.

Creately is another web app that’s all about making diagrams and flowcharts, just like Gliffy. It’s designed to be fun and clean, perfect for businesses and classrooms. And unlike some of the other options out there, Creately keeps things easy and simple.

One-click. That’s all it takes to create your diagram and according to them, it’s five times faster than other platforms. Plus, they’ve got a bunch of shapes, lines, and colors for you to choose from. And not only that, they’ve also got smart connectors and collaboration tools. So, you can easily work with others on your projects and charts.

So, here’s the deal. Creately isn’t totally free like some of the other web-based alternatives to Visio. Yeah, they have a free version, but it’s pretty limited when it comes to documents and features. If you just need something similar to Visio, Creately won’t break the bank. It’s only $5 a month or $49 a year, making it one of the more affordable options out there for creative and productive folks like you.

If you prefer a dedicated app, you can get Creately’s desktop app for a one-time payment of $75 for personal use. And guess what? That price includes a whole year of free upgrades. They also have team plans if you want to collaborate with others. Plus, they’ve got clients for Mac, Windows, and Linux, so pretty much everyone can find their groove with Creately.


Alright, I’ll be honest with you. Dia looks and feels kinda old in some ways. It’s not that surprising though, considering it’s a free alternative to popular paid applications. It even looks older than OpenOffice and LibreOffice, and those apps have been around for a while. Dia has been around since 1998 and still hasn’t hit version 1.0 yet. The most recent update, v0.97.2, came out in September 2014. But hey, despite its dated appearance, Dia is still a solid replacement for Visio, especially if you want a completely free download instead of a fancy web app that costs money.

I find Dia to be quite user-friendly and straightforward. Its main focus on diagramming makes it a powerful tool to have in your productivity arsenal. The app offers a variety of shape packages to suit your needs, including options for flowcharts, network diagrams, circuit diagrams, and more. This versatility makes it useful for both technical and creative projects. Your files are saved and loaded in a custom XML file format, which can be exported to different file formats such as .SVG, .JPEG, and .VDX (the file format used by Microsoft Visio).

All in all, Dia is a great free alternative to Visio. It is available for Windows, Mac, and Linux, so you can easily access it no matter what operating system you use. It may not be perfect, but for those on a budget, it could be just what you need to get organized and stay productive.

Pencil Project

Now, let me tell you about the Pencil Project. It’s another free and open-source alternative to Visio that lets you create maps and diagrams. Sure, it’s not exactly breaking new ground, but here’s the catch: out of the four open-source projects we’ve listed, Pencil Project has the best user interface for creating charts and diagrams. So, you won’t have to struggle through a program that hasn’t seen updates since way back in 2001.

You’ll find a wide range of shapes, lines, and other tools at your disposal in Pencil Project, making the process of mapping out your diagrams a breeze. With this tool, you can easily connect shapes and create flowcharts without any hassle.

But wait, there’s more: Pencil Project also helps you design the user interface for your products and applications. It comes with a wide range of iOS and Android stencils, shapes, and status bars, allowing you to create your interface in a flexible environment. This feature may not appeal to everyone, but it introduces an intriguing concept and adds a fresh perspective to the usual diagramming tools that we’ve seen countless times before.

Pencil Project is still regularly updated, with the most recent update occurring in October of 2019. It has a large community of supporters and ample documentation available. If you’re in need of a downloadable application for your diagrams and designs, this one is definitely worth checking out.

Google Drawings

Google has an answer for almost all of Microsoft’s Office suite applications, and Visio is no exception. Google Drawings is a free web-based diagramming tool included in the Google Drive suite, alongside Docs, Sheets, and Slides. It allows users to create flowcharts, wireframes, concept maps, and any other diagrams required for your work.

Just like Google’s other productivity apps, Drawings is available as both a web application and an offline Chrome app in the Web Store. This means you can work on the go, no matter where you are. Although it may not be as powerful as Visio, it provides a variety of templates, shapes, arrows, and scribbles that make it easy to create charts within Google’s familiar Docs-like interface.

Fancy seeing you here! Well, let me tell you all about Drawings and why it’s such a nifty tool. First off, Drawings comes with all the usual Google perks. Your files are automatically saved in Google Drive, which is super handy. And the real star of the show is the collaboration feature. Sharing your work with others is a piece of cake, just like in any other Google document. All you gotta do is send them a link through email, and they can view, comment, and edit your masterpiece.

This collaborative workflow is what made Google Docs so popular, and it’s no different with Google Drawings. Professionals who are looking for an alternative to Visio will love it. Plus, you can easily export your drawings or diagrams to any other Google app. So if you’re already a Google user, you’ll feel right at home.

yEd Graph Editor

Now let’s talk about yEd, which might have a funny name, but trust me, it’s one of the best alternatives to Visio out there. This app by yWorks has a user-friendly interface that allows you to effortlessly customize your diagrams. It’s got a huge range of diagram elements, like shape nodes, edge types, and flowchart symbols. So whether you need to create a flowchart, diagram, or mind map, yEd has got you covered.

But wait, there’s more! You can even import your own content, including shape stencils from Visio files, to create custom element types. And with yEd’s automatic layout feature, handling large amounts of data in your flowchart is a breeze. You can easily control the direction of branches right from the settings panel.

Hey there! So, once you’ve played around with the automatic layout options in yWorks, yEd has got you covered with a bunch of export choices. You can save your content as a PDF, JPEG, GIF, or even an HTML image map with all your embedded URLs intact. And guess what? You can also save your graphs as Adobe Flash SWF files. This means you can view your graphs using the Adobe Flash Player viewer that’s built right in. Pretty cool, right? You can even embed these files on your website and let users zoom, move, and click on your links. It’s all about giving your viewers the best experience!

No matter what kind of diagrams or flowcharts you’re looking to create, yEd has got your back. And the best part? Every single feature is totally free. Seriously, no hidden costs. Plus, yEd works on Windows, web-based clients, and even on mobile devices. Oh, and there’s also a new online version for all you cloud enthusiasts out there. So, go ahead and make your diagrams with yEd – it’s super easy and fun!

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