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Converting datetime to string in Python

Standard Library
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Datetime
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Cookbooks
schedule Jul 1, 2022
Last updated
local_offer Python
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tocTable of Contents
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We can convert a datetime to a string in Python using the datetime.strftime(~) method.

Examples

To convert the current datetime to a string date:

from datetime import datetime
dt = datetime.now() #Initialize datetime object 2021-05-20 08:45:47.780314
s = dt.strftime("%Y/%-m/%-d") #Convert datetime object to string

print(s)
print(type(s))
2021/5/20
<class 'str'>

Notice that we pass a format string to the datetime.sfrftime(~) method which specifies what format the output string should follow. In this case we provided "%Y/%-m/%-d" which is why the output result is in YYYY/MM/DD format without zero padding.

List of Format Codes

The below tables provides information of the various directives used for expressing date formats:

Directive

Meaning

Example

%a

Weekday as locale’s abbreviated name.

%A

Weekday as locale’s full name.

%w

Weekday as a decimal number, where 0 is Sunday and 6 is Saturday.

0, 1, …, 6

%d

Day of the month as a zero-padded decimal number.

01, 02, …, 31

%b

Month as locale’s abbreviated name.

%B

Month as locale’s full name.

%m

Month as a zero-padded decimal number.

01, 02, …, 12

%y

Year without century as a zero-padded decimal number.

00, 01, …, 99

%Y

Year with century as a decimal number.

0001, 0002, …, 2013, 2014, …, 9998, 9999

%H

Hour (24-hour clock) as a zero-padded decimal number.

00, 01, …, 23

%I

Hour (12-hour clock) as a zero-padded decimal number.

01, 02, …, 12

%p

Locale’s equivalent of either AM or PM.

AM, PM (en_US);am, pm (de_DE)

%M

Minute as a zero-padded decimal number.

00, 01, …, 59

%S

Second as a zero-padded decimal number.

00, 01, …, 59

%f

Microsecond as a decimal number, zero-padded on the left.

000000, 000001, …, 999999

%z

UTC offset in the form ±HHMM[SS[.ffffff]] (empty string if the object is naive).

(empty), +0000, -0400, +1030, +063415, -030712.345216

%Z

Time zone name (empty string if the object is naive).

(empty), UTC, EST, CST

%j

Day of the year as a zero-padded decimal number.

001, 002, …, 366

%U

Week number of the year (Sunday as the first day of the week) as a zero padded decimal number. All days in a new year preceding the first Sunday are considered to be in week 0.

00, 01, …, 53

%W

Week number of the year (Monday as the first day of the week) as a decimal number. All days in a new year preceding the first Monday are considered to be in week 0.

00, 01, …, 53

%c

Locale’s appropriate date and time representation.

Tue Aug 16 21:30:00 1988 (en_US);Di 16 Aug 21:30:00 1988 (de_DE)

%x

Locale’s appropriate date representation.

08/16/88 (None);08/16/1988 (en_US);16.08.1988 (de_DE)

%X

Locale’s appropriate time representation.

21:30:00 (en_US);21:30:00 (de_DE)

%%

A literal '%' character.

%

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Published by Arthur Yanagisawa
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