How do I get the current time?


How do I get the current time?

Asked By: user46646



Use datetime:

>>> import datetime
>>> now =
>>> now
datetime.datetime(2009, 1, 6, 15, 8, 24, 78915)
>>> print(now)
2009-01-06 15:08:24.789150

For just the clock time without the date:

>>> now.time()
datetime.time(15, 8, 24, 78915)
>>> print(now.time())

To save typing, you can import the datetime object from the datetime module:

>>> from datetime import datetime

Then remove the prefix datetime. from all of the above.

Answered By: Harley Holcombe

Use time.strftime():

>>> from time import gmtime, strftime
>>> strftime("%Y-%m-%d %H:%M:%S", gmtime())
'2009-01-05 22:14:39'
Answered By: Sean James
>>> from time import gmtime, strftime
>>> strftime("%a, %d %b %Y %X +0000", gmtime())
'Tue, 06 Jan 2009 04:54:56 +0000'

That outputs the current GMT in the specified format. There is also a localtime() method.

This page has more details.

Answered By: Vijay Dev


from time import time

t = time()
  • t – float number, good for time interval measurement.

There is some difference for Unix and Windows platforms.

Answered By: maxp

If you need current time as a time object:

>>> import datetime
>>> now =
>>> datetime.time(now.hour, now.minute, now.second)
datetime.time(11, 23, 44)
Answered By: bluish

Similar to Harley’s answer, but use the str() function for a quick-n-dirty, slightly more human readable format:

>>> from datetime import datetime
>>> str(
'2011-05-03 17:45:35.177000'
Answered By: Ray
from datetime import datetime'%Y-%m-%d %H:%M:%S')

Example output: '2013-09-18 11:16:32'

See list of strftime directives.

Answered By: ParaMeterz

.isoformat() is in the documentation, but not yet here
(this is mighty similar to @Ray Vega’s answer):

>>> import datetime
Answered By: emmagras

The quickest way is:

>>> import time
>>> time.strftime("%Y%m%d")
Answered By: nacholibre

The previous answers are all good suggestions, but I find it easiest to use ctime():

In [2]: from time import ctime
In [3]: ctime()
Out[3]: 'Thu Oct 31 11:40:53 2013'

This gives a nicely formatted string representation of the current local time.

Answered By: Ethereal
>>> import datetime, time
>>> time = time.strftime("%H:%M:%S:%MS", time.localtime())
>>> print time
Answered By: user2030113 returns the current time as a naive datetime object that represents time in the local timezone. That value may be ambiguous e.g., during DST transitions (“fall back”). To avoid ambiguity either UTC timezone should be used:

from datetime import datetime

utc_time = datetime.utcnow()
print(utc_time) # -> 2014-12-22 22:48:59.916417

Or a timezone-aware object that has the corresponding timezone info attached (Python 3.2+):

from datetime import datetime, timezone

now =
print(now) # -> 2014-12-23 01:49:25.837541+03:00
Answered By: jfs

This is what I ended up going with:

>>>from time import strftime
>>>strftime("%m/%d/%Y %H:%M")
01/09/2015 13:11

Also, this table is a necessary reference for choosing the appropriate format codes to get the date formatted just the way you want it (from Python “datetime” documentation here).

strftime format code table

Answered By: Kristen G.

You can use the time module:

>>> import time
>>> print(time.strftime("%d/%m/%Y"))

The use of the capital Y gives the full year, and using y would give 06/02/15.

You could also use the following code to give a more lengthy time:

>>> time.strftime("%a, %d %b %Y %H:%M:%S")
'Fri, 06 Feb 2015 17:45:09'
Answered By: Tom

How do I get the current time in Python?

The time module

The time module provides functions that tell us the time in "seconds since the epoch" as well as other utilities.

import time

Unix Epoch Time

This is the format you should get timestamps in for saving in databases. It is a simple floating-point number that can be converted to an integer. It is also good for arithmetic in seconds, as it represents the number of seconds since Jan 1, 1970, 00:00:00, and it is memory light relative to the other representations of time we’ll be looking at next:

>>> time.time()

This timestamp does not account for leap-seconds, so it’s not linear – leap seconds are ignored. So while it is not equivalent to the international UTC standard, it is close, and therefore quite good for most cases of record-keeping.

This is not ideal for human scheduling, however. If you have a future event you wish to take place at a certain point in time, you’ll want to store that time with a string that can be parsed into a datetime object or a serialized datetime object (these will be described later).


You can also represent the current time in the way preferred by your operating system (which means it can change when you change your system preferences, so don’t rely on this to be standard across all systems, as I’ve seen others expect). This is typically user friendly, but doesn’t typically result in strings one can sort chronologically:

>>> time.ctime()
'Tue Feb 17 23:21:56 2015'

You can hydrate timestamps into human readable form with ctime as well:

>>> time.ctime(1424233311.771502)
'Tue Feb 17 23:21:51 2015'

This conversion is also not good for record-keeping (except in text that will only be parsed by humans – and with improved Optical Character Recognition and Artificial Intelligence, I think the number of these cases will diminish).

datetime module

The datetime module is also quite useful here:

>>> import datetime

The is a class method that returns the current time. It uses the time.localtime without the timezone info (if not given, otherwise see timezone aware below). It has a representation (which would allow you to recreate an equivalent object) echoed on the shell, but when printed (or coerced to a str), it is in human readable (and nearly ISO) format, and the lexicographic sort is equivalent to the chronological sort:

datetime.datetime(2015, 2, 17, 23, 43, 49, 94252)
>>> print(
2015-02-17 23:43:51.782461

datetime’s utcnow

You can get a datetime object in UTC time, a global standard, by doing this:

>>> datetime.datetime.utcnow()
datetime.datetime(2015, 2, 18, 4, 53, 28, 394163)
>>> print(datetime.datetime.utcnow())
2015-02-18 04:53:31.783988

UTC is a time standard that is nearly equivalent to the GMT timezone. (While GMT and UTC do not change for Daylight Savings Time, their users may switch to other timezones, like British Summer Time, during the Summer.)

datetime timezone aware

However, none of the datetime objects we’ve created so far can be easily converted to various timezones. We can solve that problem with the pytz module:

>>> import pytz
>>> then =
>>> then
datetime.datetime(2015, 2, 18, 4, 55, 58, 753949, tzinfo=<UTC>)

Equivalently, in Python 3 we have the timezone class with a utc timezone instance attached, which also makes the object timezone aware (but to convert to another timezone without the handy pytz module is left as an exercise to the reader):

datetime.datetime(2015, 2, 18, 22, 31, 56, 564191, tzinfo=datetime.timezone.utc)

And we see we can easily convert to timezones from the original UTC object.

>>> print(then)
2015-02-18 04:55:58.753949+00:00
>>> print(then.astimezone(pytz.timezone('US/Eastern')))
2015-02-17 23:55:58.753949-05:00

You can also make a naive datetime object aware with the pytz timezone localize method, or by replacing the tzinfo attribute (with replace, this is done blindly), but these are more last resorts than best practices:

>>> pytz.utc.localize(datetime.datetime.utcnow())
datetime.datetime(2015, 2, 18, 6, 6, 29, 32285, tzinfo=<UTC>)
>>> datetime.datetime.utcnow().replace(tzinfo=pytz.utc)
datetime.datetime(2015, 2, 18, 6, 9, 30, 728550, tzinfo=<UTC>)

The pytz module allows us to make our datetime objects timezone aware and convert the times to the hundreds of timezones available in the pytz module.

One could ostensibly serialize this object for UTC time and store that in a database, but it would require far more memory and be more prone to error than simply storing the Unix Epoch time, which I demonstrated first.

The other ways of viewing times are much more error-prone, especially when dealing with data that may come from different time zones. You want there to be no confusion as to which timezone a string or serialized datetime object was intended for.

If you’re displaying the time with Python for the user, ctime works nicely, not in a table (it doesn’t typically sort well), but perhaps in a clock. However, I personally recommend, when dealing with time in Python, either using Unix time, or a timezone aware UTC datetime object.

The following is what I use to get the time without having to format. Some people don’t like the split method, but it is useful here:

from time import ctime
print ctime().split()[3]

It will print in HH:MM:SS format.

Answered By: Amro elaswar

Try the arrow module from

import arrow

Or the UTC version:


To change its output, add .format():

arrow.utcnow().format('YYYY-MM-DD HH:mm:ss ZZ')

For a specific timezone:'US/Pacific')

An hour ago:


Or if you want the gist.

>>> '2 years ago'
Answered By: Back2Basics
import datetime
date_time = str(
date,time = date_time

date will print date and time will print time.

Answered By: Abhijeet Deshani

To get exactly 3 decimal points for milliseconds 11:34:23.751 run this:

def get_time_str(decimal_points=3):
        return time.strftime("%H:%M:%S", time.localtime()) + '.%d' % (time.time() % 1 * 10**decimal_points)

More context:

I want to get the time with milliseconds. A simple way to get them:

import time, datetime

print(                         # 11:20:08.272239

# Or in a more complicated way
print(             # 11:20:08.272239
print('%H:%M:%S.%f')) # 11:20:08.272239

# But do not use this:
print(time.strftime("%H:%M:%S.%f", time.localtime()), str)    # 11:20:08.%f

But I want only milliseconds, right? The shortest way to get them:

import time

time.strftime("%H:%M:%S", time.localtime()) + '.%d' % (time.time() % 1 * 1000)
# 11:34:23.751

Add or remove zeroes from the last multiplication to adjust number of decimal points, or just:

def get_time_str(decimal_points=3):
    return time.strftime("%H:%M:%S", time.localtime()) + '.%d' % (time.time() % 1 * 10**decimal_points)
Answered By: y.selivonchyk

Why not ask the U.S. Naval Observatory, the official timekeeper of the United States Navy?

import requests
from lxml import html

page = requests.get('')
tree = html.fromstring(page.content)

If you live in the D.C. area (like me) the latency might not be too bad…

Answered By: C8H10N4O2
import datetime
date_time =

date =  # Gives the date
time = date_time.time()  # Gives the time

print date.year, date.month,
print time.hour, time.minute, time.second, time.microsecond

Do dir(date) or any variables including the package. You can get all the attributes and methods associated with the variable.

Answered By: theBuzzyCoder

Using pandas to get the current time, kind of overkilling the problem at hand:

import pandas as pd


2017-09-22 12:44:56.092642
Answered By: prudhvi Indana

if you are using numpy already then directly you can use numpy.datetime64()

import numpy as np

for only date:


or, if you are using pandas already then you can use pandas.to_datetime() function

import pandas as pd


Answered By: durjoy

You can use this function to get the time (unfortunately it doesn’t say AM or PM):

def gettime():
    from datetime import datetime
    return ((str(' ')[1]).split('.')[0]

To get the hours, minutes, seconds and milliseconds to merge later, you can use these functions:


def gethour():
    from datetime import datetime
    return (((str(' ')[1]).split('.')[0]).split(':')[0]


def getminute():
    from datetime import datetime
    return (((str(' ')[1]).split('.')[0]).split(':')[1]


def getsecond():
    from datetime import datetime
    return (((str(' ')[1]).split('.')[0]).split(':')[2]


def getmillisecond():
    from datetime import datetime
    return (str('.')[1]
Answered By: Richie Bendall
from time import ctime

// Day {Mon,Tue,..}
print ctime().split()[0]
// Month {Jan, Feb,..}
print ctime().split()[1]
// Date {1,2,..}
print ctime().split()[2]
print ctime().split()[3]
// Year {2018,..}
print ctime().split()[4]

When you call ctime() it will convert seconds to string in format 'Day Month Date HH:MM:SS Year' (for example: 'Wed January 17 16:53:22 2018'), then you call split() method that will make a list from your string ['Wed','Jan','17','16:56:45','2018'] (default delimeter is space).

Brackets are used to ‘select’ wanted argument in list.

One should call just one code line. One should not call them like I did, that was just an example, because in some cases you will get different values, rare but not impossible cases.

Answered By: Bojan Petrovic

By default, now() function returns output in the YYYY-MM-DD HH:MM:SS:MS format. Use the below sample script to get the current date and time in a Python script and print results on the screen. Create file with the below content.

import datetime

currentDT =
print (str(currentDT))

The output looks like below:

2018-03-01 17:03:46.759624
Answered By: Madhusudhan R

First import the datetime module from datetime

from datetime import datetime

Then print the current time as ‘yyyy-mm-dd hh:mm:ss’


To get only the time in the form ‘hh:mm:ss’ where ss stands for the full number of seconds plus the fraction of seconds elapsed, just do;


Converting the to a string yields an answer that is in the format that feels like the regular DATES AND TIMES we are used to.

Answered By: Samuel Nde

Because no one has mentioned it yet, and this is something I ran into recently… a pytz timezone’s fromutc() method combined with datetime’s utcnow() is the best way I’ve found to get a useful current time (and date) in any timezone.

from datetime import datetime

import pytz

JST = pytz.timezone("Asia/Tokyo")

local_time = JST.fromutc(datetime.utcnow())

If all you want is the time, you can then get that with local_time.time().

Answered By: kungphu

If you just want the current timestamp in ms (for example, to measure execution time), you can also use the “timeit” module:

import timeit
start_time = timeit.default_timer()
end_time = timeit.default_timer()
print("Elapsed time: {}".format(end_time - start_time))
Answered By: motagirl2

This question doesn’t need a new answer just for the sake of it … a shiny new-ish toy/module, however, is enough justification. That being the Pendulum library, which appears to do the sort of things which arrow attempted, except without the inherent flaws and bugs which beset arrow.

For instance, the answer to the original question:

>>> import pendulum
>>> print(
>>> print('utc'))

There’s a lot of standards which need addressing, including multiple RFCs and ISOs, to worry about. Ever get them mixed up; not to worry, take a little look into dir(pendulum.constants) There’s a bit more than RFC and ISO formats there, though.

When we say local, though what do we mean? Well I mean:

>>> print(

Presumably most of the rest of you mean somewhere else.

And on it goes. Long story short: Pendulum attempts to do for date and time what requests did for HTTP. It’s worth consideration, particularly for both its ease of use and extensive documentation.

Answered By: Ben

This is so simple.

import datetime
date_time = str(
date = date_time.split()[0]
time = date_time.split()[1]
Answered By: Sachin

Get current date time attributes:

import datetime

currentDT =

print ("Current Year is: %d" % currentDT.year)
print ("Current Month is: %d" % currentDT.month)
print ("Current Day is: %d" %
print ("Current Hour is: %d" % currentDT.hour)
print ("Current Minute is: %d" % currentDT.minute)
print ("Current Second is: %d" % currentDT.second)
print ("Current Microsecond is: %d" % currentDT.microsecond)

import time;

ticks = time.time()
print "Number of ticks since "12:00am, Jan 1, 1970":", ticks
Answered By: Ram Prajapati

This question is for Python but since Django is one of the most widely used frameworks for Python, its important to note that if you are using Django you can always use instead of The former is timezone ‘aware’ while the latter is not.

See this SO answer and the Django doc for details and rationale behind

from django.utils import timezone

now =
Answered By: Anupam

You can do so using ctime():

from time import time, ctime
t = time()


Sat Sep 14 21:27:08 2019

These outputs are different because the timestamp returned by ctime() depends on your geographical location.

Answered By: Sai Kiran Sangam
import datetime

todays_date =
>>> 2019-10-12

# adding strftime will remove the seconds
current_time ='%H:%M')
>>> 23:38
Answered By: Jobin James

Current time of a timezone

from datetime import datetime
import pytz

tz_NY = pytz.timezone('America/New_York') 
datetime_NY =
print("NY time:", datetime_NY.strftime("%H:%M:%S"))

tz_London = pytz.timezone('Europe/London')
datetime_London =
print("London time:", datetime_London.strftime("%H:%M:%S"))

tz_India = pytz.timezone('Asia/India')
datetime_India =
print("India time:", datetime_India.strftime("%H:%M:%S"))

#list timezones
Answered By: champion-runner

Method1: Getting Current Date and Time from system datetime

The datetime module supplies classes for manipulating dates and times.


from datetime import datetime,date

print("Date: "+str("-"+str("-"+str(
print("Year: "+str(
print("Month: "+str(
print("Day: "+str("n")

print("Time: "+str(":"+str(":"+str(
print("Hour: "+str(
print("Minute: "+str(
print("Second: "+str(
print("MilliSecond: "+str(

Output will be like

Date: 2020-4-18
Year: 2020
Month: 4
Day: 18

Time: 19:30:5
Hour: 19
Minute: 30
Second: 5
MilliSecond: 836071

Method2: Getting Current Date and Time if Network is available

urllib package helps us to handle the url’s that means webpages. Here we collects data from the webpage and parses dateime from the webpage using the package dateparser.


from urllib.request import urlopen
import dateparser

time_url = urlopen(u'')
datetime ="utf-8", errors="ignore").split(' ')[:-1]
date = datetime[0]
time = datetime[1]

print("Date: "+str(date))
print("Year: "+str(date.split('-')[0]))
print("Month: "+str(date.split('-')[1]))
print("Day: "+str(date.split('-')[2])+'n')

print("Time: "+str(time))
print("Hour: "+str(time.split(':')[0]))
print("Minute: "+str(time.split(':')[1]))
print("Second: "+str(time.split(':')[2]))

Output will be like

Date: 2020-04-18
Year: 2020
Month: 04
Day: 18

Time: 14:17:10
Hour: 14
Minute: 17
Second: 10

Method3: Getting Current Date and Time from Local Time of the Machine

Python’s time module provides a function for getting local time from the number of seconds elapsed since the epoch called localtime(). ctime() function takes seconds passed since epoch as an argument and returns a string representing local time.


from time import time, ctime
datetime = ctime(time()).split(' ')

print("Date: "+str(datetime[4])+"-"+str(datetime[1])+"-"+str(datetime[2]))
print("Year: "+str(datetime[4]))
print("Month: "+str(datetime[1]))
print("Day: "+str(datetime[2]))
print("Week Day: "+str(datetime[0])+'n')

print("Time: "+str(datetime[3]))
print("Hour: "+str(datetime[3]).split(':')[0])
print("Minute: "+str(datetime[3]).split(':')[1])
print("Second: "+str(datetime[3]).split(':')[2])

Output will be like

Date: 2020-Apr-18
Year: 2020
Month: Apr
Day: 18
Week Day: Sat

Time: 19:30:20
Hour: 19
Minute: 30
Second: 20
Answered By: Littin Rajan

The time module can import all sorts of time stuff, inculduing sleep and other types of stuff including – the current time type

import time
time.strftime("%T", time.localtime())

The output should look like this

Answered By: Lucas Urban

You can try the following

import datetime

now =


import datetime

now =
print(now.strftime("%Y-%b-%d, %A %I:%M:%S"))
Answered By: Umutambyi Gad

we can accomplish that Using datetime module

>>> from datetime import datetime
>>> now = #get a datetime object containing current date and time
>>> current_time = now.strftime("%H:%M:%S") #created a string representing current time
>>> print("Current Time =", current_time)
Current Time = 17:56:54

In addition, we can get the current time of time zome using pytZ module.

>>> from pytz import timezone
>>> import pytz
>>> eastern = timezone('US/Eastern')
>>> amsterdam = timezone('Europe/Amsterdam')
>>> datetime_eu =
>>> print("Europe time::", datetime_eu.strftime("%H:%M:%S"))
Europe time:: 14:45:31
Answered By: Ransaka Ravihara

If you want the time for purpose of timing function calls, then you want time.perf_counter().

start_time = time.perf_counter()
time_taken = time.perf_counter() - start_time
print(f'expensive_function() took {round(time_taken,2)}s')

time.perf_counter() → float

Return the value (in fractional seconds) of a performance counter, i.e. a clock with the highest available resolution to measure a short duration. It does include time elapsed during sleep and is system-wide. The reference point of the returned value is undefined, so that only the difference between the results of consecutive calls is valid.

New in version 3.3.

time.perf_counter_ns() → int

Similar to perf_counter(), but return time as nanoseconds.

New in version 3.7.

Answered By: James McGuigan

From Python 3.9, the zoneinfo module can be used for getting timezones rather than using a third party library.

To get the current time in a particular timezone:

from datetime import datetime
from zoneinfo import ZoneInfo"Europe/Amsterdam"))
Answered By: Tom Carrick
import datetime

print('date='' ')[0]+' '+'time='' ')[1]

Since Qt is used extensively,

from PyQt5 import QDateTime
Answered By: Harsh

Here’s the code which will only show time according to your question:

 from datetime import datetime
 b = time.strftime("%H:%M:%S")
  • Used to get the current date and time.
  • Then used .strftime to get desired value i.e time only.

strftime is used to retrieve the desired output or to change the default format according to our need.

Answered By: Faraaz Kurawle

try this one:-

from datetime import datetime

now =

current_time = now.strftime("%H:%M:%S")
print("Current Time =", current_time)
Answered By: RITIK KUMAR

Use this method for UTC DateTime, local Date-Time, and convert am and pm

import pytz
from datetime import datetime

#UTC Time
print("UTC Date and time")
epoch: datetime

#local date and time
print("Local Date and time")
today =
local_time = today.strftime("%Y-%M-%d:%H:%M:%S")

#convert time to AM PM format
print("Date and time AM and PM")
now = today.strftime("%Y-%M-%d:%I:%M %p")
Answered By: Sankar guru

If you using it for django datetime sometimes won’t work on server so I recommend using timezone

But for use django timezone you should set your country timezone code in your

TIME_ZONE = 'Asia/Tashkent'

Then you can use it

from django.utils import timezone // for date time // for yaer // for month // for day // for date // for hour // for minute

or if you want use on python

import time

time.strftime('%X') // '13:12:47'

time.strftime('%x') // '01/20/22'

time.strftime('%d') // '20' day

time.strftime('%m') // '01' month

time.strftime('%y') // '20' year

time.strftime('%H') // '01' hour

time.strftime('%M') // '01' minute

time.strftime('%m') // '01' second
Answered By: Abduvahob Kaxarov

Gets the current time and converts it to string:

from datetime import datetime'%Y-%m-%d %H:%M:%S')
Answered By: Matei Piele

Attributes of now() can be used to get the current time in python:

# importing datetime module for now()
import datetime
# using now() to get current time
current_time =
# Printing attributes of now().
print ("The attributes of now() are : ")
print ("Year : ", end = "")
print (current_time.year)
print ("Month : ", end = "")
print (current_time.month)
print ("Day : ", end = "")
print (
print ("Hour : ", end = "")
print (current_time.hour)
print ("Minute : ", end = "")
print (current_time.minute)
print ("Second : ", end = "")
print (current_time.second)
print ("Microsecond : ", end = "")
print (current_time.microsecond)
Answered By: Kofi

This should work

import time

now =
current_time = now.strftime("%H:%M:%S")
print("The current time is", current_time)
Answered By: Mr. Day

If you use pandas a lot you can use Timestamp, which is the equivalent of Python’s Datetime:

In [1]: import pandas as pd

In [2]:
Out[2]: Timestamp('2022-06-21 21:52:50.568788')

And just the time:

In [3]:"%H:%M:%S")
Out[3]: '21:53:01'
Answered By: rachwa

There are so many complex solutions here it could be confusing for a beginner. I find this is the most simple solution to the question – as it just returns the current time as asked (no frills):

import datetime

time =

display_time = time.strftime("%H:%M")

If you wanted more detail back than just the current time, you can do what some others have suggested here:

import datetime

time =

Although this approach is shorter to write, it returns the current date and milliseconds as well, which may not be required when simply looking to return the current time.

Answered By: Olney1
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