Python – How to use timezones with a datetime object in python


How do I properly represent a different timezone in my timezone? The below example only works because I know that EDT is one hour ahead of me, so I can uncomment the subtraction of myTimeZone()

import datetime, re
from datetime import tzinfo

class myTimeZone(tzinfo):
    """docstring for myTimeZone"""
    def utfoffset(self, dt):
        return timedelta(hours=1)

def myDateHandler(aDateString):
    """u'Sat,  6 Sep 2008 21:16:33 EDT'"""
    _my_date_pattern = re.compile(r'\w+\,\s+(\d+)\s+(\w+)\s+(\d+)\s+(\d+)\:(\d+)\:(\d+)')
    day, month, year, hour, minute, second =
    month = [
            'JAN', 'FEB', 'MAR', 
            'APR', 'MAY', 'JUN', 
            'JUL', 'AUG', 'SEP', 
            'OCT', 'NOV', 'DEC'
    ].index(month.upper()) + 1
    dt = datetime.datetime(
        int(year), int(month), int(day), 
        int(hour), int(minute), int(second)
    # dt = dt - datetime.timedelta(hours=1)
    # dt = dt - dt.tzinfo.utfoffset(myTimeZone())
    return (dt.year, dt.month,, dt.hour, dt.minute, dt.second, 0, 0, 0)

def main():
    print myDateHandler("Sat,  6 Sep 2008 21:16:33 EDT")

if __name__ == '__main__':

Best Answer

I recommend babel and pytz when working with timezones. Keep your internal datetime objects naive and in UTC and convert to your timezone for formatting only. The reason why you probably want naive objects (objects without timezone information) is that many libraries and database adapters have no idea about timezones.