Helvetica alternates?


I know there’s really no such thing as a font as good as Helvetica, but I want a font that is close to it. I have Office 365, with Word, PowerPoint, Excel, etc. (I do not know how I can manage without InDesign, but I do). Office 365 does not come with Helvetica (only Arial). It is very annoying. So, does anyone know of any free Helvetica alternates?

Thank you very much in advance,



Hello QueenoftheFonts,

I am not trying to be a smart-a** when I ask if you have tried using a search engine (Google is an example, although not MY first choice) to look for “open source alternatives for Helvetica font”?

As I presume you already know, the Adobe Helvetica family of sans-serif fonts is massive in scope. You may wish to look at the site typewolf (dot) com for some suggested open source alternatives. Two other sites you might wish to visit are dafont (dot) com and fontsquirrel (dot) com.

Another thought that occurs to me: have you looked at the Liberation family of open source fonts as a possible replacement for Helvetica?

Best regards,

Renaissance Man at Large


Apple recently replaced Helvetica Neue, which they used for a lot of their screen display uses, with their own font called SF UI. It is very similar to Helvetica (but there are some differences that a good eye can see). It’s free at



Hello @Frank,
I have tried using Google, but I wanted to ask FontTalk to see if anyone knows a certain font that they specially liked and thought close to Helvetica, that might not have came up in Google. Also, I wanted to have a topic with different Helvetica alternates so that others that may be having the same problem as I can see which ones others recommend.


Thanks, @Typehuile :grinning:!


Two fonts that are almost exact duplicates of Helvetica are Nimbus and Free Sans. There are many Helvetica-ish fonts, but they vary to one degree or another from Helvetica (the leg of the R, the terminal cut of the c and e, whether the l.c. l ends on the baseline or turns a corner, etc.). Some of those others (by no means an exclusive list) are Cooper-Hewitt, URW Linear, Fivo, Heebo, and Liberation Sans. Here’s a screen snap of Nimbus and Free Sans. I included the R, which is one of the clearly distinguishing glyphs in Helvetica.
32 PM


Here’s another Helvetica near-twin: Heebo, available at Font Squirrel. Alas, no italics and the cap R is different, but it’s close.


Thanks @Typehuile for spending your time on helping me. :blush:


My pleasure. Literally. I enjoy doing it. And I see that I did mention Heebo in my first post. Forgot about that when I ran across it again.


I do that all the time.:rofl:


QoF, I just ran across this post at Creative Bloq, and it’s exactly what you asked about:


Thanks, @Typehuile!
I’ll surely check it out!