Skip to content

Times New Roman: Free Alternatives & Similar Fonts

If you’re looking for free alternatives to Times New Roman, here are 7 of the highest-quality look-alikes and similar fonts.

  1. EB Garamond (more formal)
  2. Merriweather (modern and versatile)
  3. Heuristica
  4. Source Serif
  5. DM Serif Display (great for serif headers)
  6. PT Serif
  7. Charis SIL (modern and distinguished)

For each, I’ll mention the advantages, disadvantages, and why you might choose it. Ready? Let’s get started.

You’re reading Free Font Alternatives: The Ultimate Guide. Quickly navigate to other fonts: Intro · Apercu · Avenir · Circular · DIN · Futura · Gotham · Helvetica · Proxima Nova · Times New Roman

1. EB Garamond

The elegant EB Garamond is a fantastic alternative for Times New Roman.

EB Garamond vs. Times New Roman font comparison

As an older and more classic serif font, EB Garamond feels even more formal and fancy than Times New Roman. Great for when you need to convey that something feels classic, wise, formal, or luxurious.

What it’s got: 5 weights + italics

Get it at: EB Garamond on Google Fonts

2. Merriweather

The Google Font Merriweather is a versatile serif that fits a wide range of modern usages.

Merriweather vs. Times New Roman font comparison

Merriweather is softer and more casual than Times New Roman, yet still distinguished. It’s – in my opinion – one of the best serif fonts on Google Fonts. Warning: it is already quite popular, so for a truly unique look, try something else.

What it’s got: 4 weights + italics

Get it at: Merriweather at Google Fonts

3. Heuristica

The uncommonly seen Heuristica is a fantastic free option similar to Times New Roman.

Heuristica vs. Times New Roman font comparison

Heuristica belong to the same family of typefaces as Times New Roman, transitional serifs, and its slightly different letterforms feel both familiar and yet fresh. A fantastic choice, and hugely underrated.

Heuristica vs. Times New Roman title font comparison

It’s also worth noting that Heuristica looks distinguished and fresh for headers too.

What it’s got: 2 weights + italics

Get it at: Heuristica at Font Squirrel

4. Source Serif

For a font similar to Times New Roman, but not so omnipresent, Source Serif is flexible and optimized for screens.

Source Serif vs. Times New Roman font comparison

Like Heuristica above, Source Serif is from the same family of typefaces as Times New Roman, making it an at once fresh yet familiar similar font. Notably, the font comes in 6 weights, giving you an enormous amount of flexibility to use it as a brand typeface.

Source Serif vs. Times New Roman title font comparison

In titles and headers, the large bold Source Serif appears chunky and almost friendly, its serifs seeming somewhat pasted on rather than the fine tines of formal type.

What it’s got: 6 weights + italics

Get it at: Source Serif at Google Fonts

5. DM Serif Display

As the “display” signifies, DM Serif Display is only suitable for headers. But where it can be used, it shines.

DM Serif Display vs. Times New Roman font comparison

It blows my mind that this font is not more widely seen, since it’s a fantastic free transitional serif in the same vein as Publico. I use it on my own portfolio, and love its stately and elegant feel. But: warning – use only for titles and subheaders. And when you do, make sure to pair it with a sans serif font (read a step-by-step guide to pairing fonts).

Oh, and as a bonus, DM Serif Display has a beautiful set of italics (not shown).

What it’s got: 1 weight + italics

Get it at: DM Serif Display at Google Fonts

6. PT Serif

While quite modern compared to Times New Roman, PT Serif makes a great serif alternative.

PT Serif vs. Times New Roman font comparison

The triangular serifs establish PT Serif as a more modern font. Structurally, it shares little in common with Times New Roman, but if you’re looking for something that has an air of importance, yet isn’t too stuffy or old, PT Serif is worth a try.

PT Serif vs. Times New Roman title font comparison

For titles, PT Serif feels modern and slightly friendly – so for a very formal design, you might want to look elsewhere.

What it’s got: 2 weights + italics

Get it at: PT Serif on Google Fonts

7. Charis SIL

The underrated Charis SIL is a versatile, free, modern serif.

Charis SIL vs. Times New Roman font comparison

Charis SIL is fantastic on a number of counts. First, you almost never see it in the wild. It’s very underused. Second, it walks the the fine line between being old/stuffy and modern/flashy. It’s a serif that would feel as happy labelling modern art as millenia-old artifacts.

Charis SIL vs. Times New Roman title font comparison

And it also shines when used as a title. An all around fantastic font similar font to Times New Roman – but at the same time, strikingly different.

What it’s got: 2 weights + italics

Get it at: Charis SIL at Font Squirrel

Other Times New Roman Alternatives

If you’re looking to branch out from Times New Roman, it’s worth checking out some of the other alternatives in this guide. For instance, the Helvetica alternatives are clean, simple options that work across a wide range of brands.

You’re reading Free Font Alternatives: The Ultimate Guide. Quickly navigate to other fonts: Intro · Apercu · Avenir · Circular · DIN · Futura · Gotham · Helvetica · Proxima Nova · Times New Roman

One Final Note 😎

If this is your first time here, you might also be interested in:

  • Learn UI Design, my full-length online video course on user interface design
  • The Design Newsletter, a 40,000+ person newsletter with original design articles aimed at giving you tactical advice to improve your UX/UI skills.

Some people have some really nice stuff to say about the newsletter.

Praise for the Design Newsletter

Thank you for your newsletter. It’s possibly the best newsletter I’ve received since 1999, when I started freelancing.

Tricia Littlefield
Founder, TheSimpleWeb

Each time I receive an email from you, I'm like ‘Damn, this is a long email! No way will I read all of this’, then I began to read and I'm like ‘Damn, this is so freaking brillant’ and read it all.

Jean-Philippe
UX Strategist, Freelance

The Design Newsletter

Over 40,000 subscribed.
No spam. Unsubscribe anytime.

You Might Also Like: