Mercury Retrograde Dates for 2020

What Is Mercury Retrograde and What Does It Mean for You?

October 13, 2020
Mercury Retrograde - OFA
Parts of this image sourced from NASA

Mercury’s last period of retrograde motion in 2020 lasts from October 14 to November 3! According to the age-old practice of astrology, we are all influenced by the effect of Mercury in retrograde. What exactly does it mean for each of us, though? Read on to find out.

What Is “Mercury Retrograde”?

Due to the way our planet’s orbit interacts with the orbits of the other planets, they sometimes appear to be traveling backward through the night sky with respect to the zodiac. This is, in fact, an illusion, which we call apparent retrograde motion

Three times a year, it appears as if Mercury is traveling backwards in the sky. We refer to these periods as times when Mercury is in retrograde motion, or simply “Mercury retrograde.” These times in particular were traditionally associated with confusion, delay, and frustration. Think undelivered love letters, email blunders, and frazzled travel plans.

However, this is an excellent time to reflect on the past. It’s said that intuition is high during these periods, and coincidences can be extraordinary.

When Is Mercury in Retrograde in 2020?

In 2020, Mercury will be in apparent retrograde motion during the following ranges of dates:

  • February 17 to March 10
  • June 18 to July 12
  • October 14 to November 3

In 2021, Mercury will be in apparent retrograde motion during the following ranges of dates:

  • January 30 to February 21
  • May 29 to June 22
  • September 27 to October 23

What You Should Do When Mercury is Retrograde

The planet Mercury rules communication in all forms—listening, writing, reading, speaking, and so on—as well as activities closely related to communication, like negotiations and contracts. It also rules travel, automobiles, shipping, and mail.

So, when Mercury is retrograde, try to remain flexible, patient, and understanding, allow extra time for travel, and avoid signing onto any new contracts that you’re unsure of. Double check your email responses and check in with reservations before you take that trip. 

Review projects and plans at these times, but wait until Mercury is direct again to make any final decisions. You can’t stop your life, but plan ahead, have back-up plans, and be prepared for people’s shorter fuses and miscommunication. 

Take a Moment to Reflect

Some blame Mercury retrograde for all the bad things that happen in their lives. Instead, this is a good time to sit back and review what you put your energy toward.

For example, if family and faith are important to you, are you putting enough of your energy into them or have you become overextended in other areas such as your career or a hobby? Losing the balance between different parts of your life can cause all of them to suffer, so being aware of the connections between them—especially during Mercury retrograde—can help you to maintain or at least better understand how that balance works.

Take a moment to reflect. Mercury retrograde can be an excellent time to take a step back and reanalyze who you are and what you are doing—but do refrain from making any drastic changes until after retrograde has ended.

Mercury and the Zodiac

The type of influence you feel also depends on which of the 12 zodiac signs Earth is in when Mercury goes retrograde.

What’s your Zodiac Sign? See here: “Mercury Retrograde and Zodiac Signs.”

Learn more about zodiac sign profiles in general and check out our monthly horoscopes. Make sure that your gardening does not go awry when Mercury is in retrograde by reading your zodiac profile for gardening.


The Old Farmer's Almanac


Reader Comments

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Mercury Retrograde

OMG.... I learned of this from my daughter a while back, as she is a Yogi and is into astrology. I heard my roommates, both men, talking about how tired and fatigued they have been lately. Actually, I’ve heard it a LOT. Complaints of fatigue, forgetful, feelings of heaviness, brain fog, and more. When one of my roommates came to me and started discussing this fatigue, I said, “hold on a sec, let me check something out”, came to this site and even to MY amazement, found that, in fact, Mercury had gone retrograde last week! This was powerful for me! Not only were my suspicions affirmed, but on a reputable site! Now that I know, I can adjust and plan accordingly!

Mercury Retrograde.

I've been a Holistic Practitioner for more than twenty-five years (and have a many years ago background as an astrologer). With natal retrogrades, usually Merc R doesn't hit me, yet this time "back-up" DVR worked to playback one disk, then WON'T eject the disk; my universal remote can't be programmed to work with two pieces of equipment, and my pain meds doctor (though the radiographic clinic and I have sent documents to her on THREE occasions) has not "gotten around" to forwarding my Rx to the pharmacy. WTH is happening?!! All I can think of are the multiple Merc retrogrades this year!!

Mercury retrograde

Hi. Really happy to say that your article is very useful to me. I am fond of astrology and often read my horoscope. Any astrologer knows that in the retrograde period of the movement of Mercury, it makes no sense to start new business and projects, organize deals, meet people and move somewhere.

Mercury Retrograde

I'm a virgo and I lost my job on 2/28/2020 and it was awful. Me and my supervisor was very kool and etc and she let me go. Im hurt behind this.

Dreadful will the moffo ever end?

Endless nightmare this one. Super hard communication in retail, lots of asshole energy. Huge love heartbreak on Valentine’s etc. Luckily only two days left... god, I do hate Mercury retro— the devil’s for real.


I am a Virgo and I temporarily lost my job exactly on the 17 , when the retrograde has just started escape from the punishment.
there must be some kind of trouble that traumatizes my poor soul.


The turntable in my micro still turns around and around when I open the door! It's not suppose to do that. Started doing it today.

Mercury Retrograde Airline Reservations and More

I decided to take a vacation. I booked a room on Maui and booked a flight. I found a someone to rent my house while I was away. The next day, my fridge broke, my toilet broke, and my car wouldn't start! I scrambled to repair everything. Then, when I went to check in for my flight, Southwest Airlines told me it had been booked for two days prior, and I had lost my money! So, my house is rented out, and I have no flight!


I'm a graduate student. Not only did my advisor threaten to throw me out on the same day that one of my professors emailed me saying it's clear I'm struggling, things with my crush have been horrid. Got a tax bill for the state which I used to live in AFTER HAVING THE SAME THING HAPPEN A FEW MONTHS AGO AND IT WAS SUPPOSED TO BE RESOLVED -_- I feel like the whole universe is ganging up to teach me a lesson currently.

Mercury Retrograde

On an Amtrak train since 9:51pm yesterday. Was supposed to be in Orlando four hours ago. Last night the train was at a dead standstill for five hours due to trees on the tracks. Today, we struck a glancing blow to a truck that tried to shoot the crossing gates as they were lowering. Over six hours late now.

Mercury Retrograde and the Bank

This happened several years ago. I paid back a friend and wrote her a check for one hundred twenty dollars. The bank misread it and deposited six hundred twenty dollars into her checking account! She told me there was a problem with her account and the bank told her to leave it alone till they figured it out. Meanwhile I went to the ATM and attempted a withdrawl. I couldn't do it as there was no money in my account! When I told my friend what happened, we realized the extra five hundred sitting in her account was MY money. It took a few days but it got fixed. When the bank processes checks, I've had tellers tell me they ALWAYS read what is written out and not the dollar amount. My friend and I analyzed my cancelled check and at first glance, the dollar amount DOES look more like 620 and not 120. But if they had actually read what was written out they would have seen that it clearly said one hundred twenty dollars and no cents!

Mercury Retrograde is real!

March of 2018 and March 2019 I broke my leg - the same leg during Mercury retrograde. Freak accidents. For those who do not believe, believe, especially if your sign rules in Mercury like Gemini or Virgo. Mercury retrograde can have effect on others depending on which sign the retrograde falls under. Computers glitch. Payments or purchase orders may be delayed or not recorded or recorded incorrectly. Relationships can be turbulent because of miscommunications and misunderstandings, especially if the relationships started in a previous retrograde, they can end suddenly without warning. Exes or romantic prospects can appear out of thin air and or vanish once the retrograde is over. Never change jobs during Mercury retrograde because there is a possibility that the change can be short lived. Travel only if necessary but have a list of what you are packing and check it twice. Have room in your schedule for delays. Do not move, get married, divorced, buy a business, house or new car or any large purchase during the retrograde. Also, do not get any planned surgery or physically altering procedure or hairstyle change that cannot be undone.
You can make plans, then wait until after Mercury goes direct.


I do not believe retrograde. Until I read this article I would never known about any of this. So keep in mind you are what you read. Life is good, what happens, happens. But tomorrow really is just another day. It might be sunny, or raining but you either go to work or not. Life it's what we live for.

End of Oct. Retrograde Blues

Towards the middle of this retrograde, I began to subconsciously immerse myself in it and learn from all the lessons its brought my way. For a second, I forgot it was retrograde and began to just go with the jarring, "backwards" nature of this period of time. I found myself going into hermit mode & analyzing a lot of the things I've been going through (perhaps this is an intentional element of the retrograde). However, coming back to the realization that it in fact is retrograde, I'm thankful for it slowing me down & making me go over the little details. This, in conjunction with Scorpio season, has forced a death & rebirth in some aspect.

Mercury Retrograde

I found myself not being able to "land" on a focus for my day today... and suddenly I wondered if Mercury were in retrograde. I googled and found this! and yes, retrograde begins tomorrow...!!! Thanks for being online - so that I could re-member my sensitivity to Mercury Retrograde, and take things a little easier.


I can't say this has been the absolute worst but it's been very unpleasant ~ an unsettled sense of being out of sync with myself, disturbing dreams, not wanting to leave my house. Externally, a chat group in which I participate, got their knickers in a twist over pretty much everything I wrote. One person seemed totally unable to understand simple sentences and refused to own her mistakes. Fortunately, none of the group are important in my life, they're just on the periphery. On the up side, it has been excellent practice in seeing what matters and discarding the rest. It is very empowering to ignore people who are seeking conflict.

July retrograd 2019

Tracked Mercury retrogrades since 1985. This is one of the worst ever. 115 degrees here. Computer battery died. One AC broke last week, the other today. First AC contractor broke my door lock then denied it and won't pay.. $150. Door repair expert didn't come for almost a week. Home warranty company has now offshored customer service to Asia, all by script, no one thinking, so for the first time in 19 yrs says I cannot choose the AC contractor, they will assign one. The one I want shows not on their list but has been for years. Will have to call the contractor and tell them to correct home warranty company records. Knee injury...danced all my life with NO knee problems. Deal closing keeps being delayed 3 weeks. I could go on but you get the idea.....the Mars influence in this one is tough...physical things breaking and conflict. Luckily I have positive communication skills professionally so have avoided conflict except with contractor and home warranty company, with whom I have been very firm but not rudely angry. I too have not wanted to go out to buy food, finally had to. Counting down until lst of August, but remember we have the shadow period which tails off for 2 more weeks, heaven help us all!

It's been alright. Not easy, but alright.

Things are looking up over all. Its not perfect, and I've worked hard to fix up my life. I've done more dumb things outside of Mercury Retrograde, like send a package to the wrong address. So this retrograde thing makes me wonder what it's all about.

Mercury Retrograde

This is just from the 13th on for my Family : Father of the bride - Emergency room Visit Gallbladder attack, Bride Broker her Nose, Nieces Refrigerator died, My Washer broke down/ needed repair its only 3 years old, Air-conditioner Broke down. # 3 friends had car accidents. Calamity at Husbands work with new computer system. I could go on but you may not believe me!

I believe you. Mercury has

I believe you. Mercury has kicked my butt, too.

No Kidding

Kicking mine too. My Hemorrhoids are kiling me and as my subject says, I am not kidding.

mercury retrograde

Came home last night and my automatic door opener wouldn't work. Changed the battery and still no go. I heard electronic and mechanical things go haywire during retrograde..guess it's true!

This one is really awful

One of our chickens got away
our old man parakeet died (stroke?)
The new tablet I just got broke
husband has been moody and under the weather
don't feel like leaving the house to shop for food
the AC water drain thing broke and watered the basement
the water drain hoses for the H2O conditioner came out of the drain and again watered the basement
Today is the 18th. I want to hide until Aug. 2nd.....this is awful!

Wrong dates

Mercury Retrograde ends July 31st at 8:57 PM not Aug 2nd.


So please give us the right dates and name your source.

Mercury in retrograde July 7!to August 2

This is the worst mercury in retrograde. I can’t even focus or function right. Things have been off for me in all aspects of life. Hurry and end.


The moon is beautiful like Joanna Panzera

Mercury retrograde

This is, in fact, an illusion, which we call apparent retrograde motion.

retrograde 2019

Last day of retrograde and my daughters dog got hit by a car, her boyfriend got in a car accident rushing to the vet. Everyone should be OK though Thank God. This is bull****!

Mercury in retrograde

This is the worst bout of Mercury in retrograde I've experienced in a long time. People seem to be impossible (or is it me?), I've had several computer problems, and every time I open my mouth the wrong thing seems to come out. I can't wait for it to be over.