Friday, January 26, 2024

Handling date and time with carbon

In PHP and Laravel, date and time can be managed using Carbon. Default PHP uses the Date object, which does not have as many flexibility as Carbon object. To start using Carbon on Laravel, add at top, along with other "use" statements. 

use Carbon\Carbon

Here are examples of its usage. Declare current date and time

$currentDateTime = Carbon::now();

The current value can be printed with 


Format to user specific output.

$now = Carbon::now()->format('d-m-Y'); // 1-1-2024

$now->toDateString(); // 2024-01-01

$now->toFormattedDateString(); // Jan 1, 2024

$now->toTimeString(); // 00:00:00

$now->toDateTimeString(); // 2024-01-01 00:00:00

$now->toDayDateTimeString(); // Mon, Jan 1, 2024 12:00 AM

$now->toCookieString(); // Monday, 01-Jan-2024 00:00:00 UTC

$now->toIso8601String(); // 2024-01-01T00:00:00+00:00

Other ways of creating a Carbon object

Carbon::parse('2023-03-10'); // Carbon instance for 2023-01-01 00:00:00

Carbon::parse('Monday of this week'); // Monday of this week

Carbon::parse('first day of January 2024'); // first day of January 2024

Carbon::parse('first day of this month'); // first day of this month

Carbon::parse('first day of next month'); // first day of next month

Carbon::parse('first day of last month'); // first day of last month

Carbon::parse('last day of last month'); // last day of last month

Retrieve values of a carbon in various formats;








Subtract one hour


Subtract more than 1 hour


Add one hour


Add more than 1 hour


Add one day


Add more than 1 day


This can also be applied to subWeeks(), addWeeks().

Set to a specific date by altering day or month or year

$currentDateTime = $currentDateTime->setMonth(2);

$currentDateTime = $currentDateTime->setDay(18);

$currentDateTime = $currentDateTime->setYear(2025);

Example that applies a specific day and month.

$currentDateTime = $workDayStart->setDay($calcCreatedDate->format('d'))->setMonth($calcCreatedDate->format('m'))->setYear($calcCreatedDate->format('Y'));

Retrieve the difference between 2 Carbon dates $start and $now.

$start->diff($now); \\ returns DateInterval

$start->diffInMinutes($now); \\ returns difference in minutes

$start->diffInMinutes($now); \\ returns difference in


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