Some accounting transactions are done repetitively and as a result, if we directly post these transactions into the general ledger, there will be increased chances of mistakes and complexity. In order to simplify that accounting process, we record such repetitive transactions into special journals. After the accumulation of transactions such as over the week, over the month, or other period, we sum up the total of the special journal and pass the entry into the general journal.

There is no hard and fast format to follow in making the special journals. It all depends upon the requirement of the entity. Normally, it includes the date, description, amount, and type columns.


There are four types of special journals which are mostly used:

  • Purchase journal
  • Purchase return journal
  • Sales journal
  • Sales return journal
  • Cash payment journal
  • Cash receipts journal