Python Datetime

In this article, you will learn to manipulate date and time in Python with the help of examples.
Python has a module named datetime to work with dates and times. Let’s create a few simple programs related to date and time before we dig deeper.

Python Dates

A date in Python is not a data type of its own, but we can import a module named datetime to work with dates as date objects.

Python Datetime


Import the datetime module and display the current date:

import datetime

x =

2019-08-01 03:22:55.008949


Date Output

When we execute the code from the example above the result will be:
2019-08-01 03:03:12.870724

The date contains year, month, day, hour, minute, second, and microsecond.

The datetime module has many methods to return information about the date object.

Here are a few examples, you will learn more about them later in this chapter:

Return the year and name of weekday:

import datetime

x =




Creating Date Objects

To create a date, we can use the datetime() class (constructor) of the datetime module.

The datetime() class requires three parameters to create a date: year, month, day.


Create a date object:

import datetime

x = datetime.datetime(2020, 8, 01)



2020-08-01 00:00:00

The datetime() class also takes parameters for time and timezone (hour, minute, second, microsecond, tzone), but they are optional, and has a default value of 0, (None for timezone).

The strftime() Method

The datetime object has a method for formatting date objects into readable strings.

The method is called strftime(), and takes one parameter, format, to specify the format of the returned string:


Display the name of the month:

import datetime

x = datetime.datetime(2017, 10, 2)




A reference of all the legal format codes:

%aWeekday, short versionWed
%AWeekday, full versionWednesday
%wWeekday as a number 0-6, 0 is Sunday3
%dDay of month 01-3131
%bMonth name, short versionDec
%BMonth name, full versionDecember
%mMonth as a number 01-1212
%yYear, short version, without century18
%YYear, full version2018
%HHour 00-2317
%IHour 00-1205
%MMinute 00-5941
%SSecond 00-5908
%fMicrosecond 000000-999999548513
%zUTC offset+0100
%jDay number of year 001-366365
%UWeek number of year, Sunday as the first day of week, 00-5352
%WWeek number of year, Monday as the first day of week, 00-5352
%cLocal version of date and timeMon Dec 31 17:41:00 2018
%xLocal version of date12/31/18
%XLocal version of time17:41:00
%%A % character%
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