# datedelta 1.2

Like datetime.timedelta, for date arithmetic.

datedelta.datedelta is datetime.timedelta for date arithmetic.

It can add years, months, or days to dates while accounting for oddities of the Gregorian calendar. It can also subtract years, months, or days from dates.

Typically, it’s useful to compute yearly or monthly subscriptions periods.

## Installation

```pip install datedelta
```

## Usage

The most common operations are adding a datedelta to a date and subtracting a datedelta from a date.

### Basic intervals

The YEAR, MONTH, and DAY constants allow expressing common calculations with little code.

```>>> import datetime
>>> import datedelta

>>> datetime.date(2016, 1, 1) + datedelta.YEAR
datetime.date(2017, 1, 1)

>>> datetime.date(2017, 1, 1) - datedelta.YEAR
datetime.date(2016, 1, 1)

>>> datetime.date(2016, 2, 29) + datedelta.YEAR
datetime.date(2017, 3, 1)

>>> datetime.date(2017, 3, 1) - datedelta.YEAR
datetime.date(2016, 3, 1)

>>> datetime.date(2016, 1, 1) + datedelta.MONTH
datetime.date(2016, 2, 1)

>>> datetime.date(2016, 2, 1) - datedelta.MONTH
datetime.date(2016, 1, 1)

>>> datetime.date(2016, 1, 31) + datedelta.MONTH
datetime.date(2016, 3, 1)

>>> datetime.date(2016, 3, 1) - datedelta.MONTH
datetime.date(2016, 2, 1)

>>> datetime.date(2016, 1, 1) + datedelta.DAY
datetime.date(2016, 1, 2)

>>> datetime.date(2016, 1, 1) - datedelta.DAY
datetime.date(2015, 12, 31)
```

Note that datedelta.DAY behaves exactly like datetime.timedelta(1). It’s only provided for consistency.

### Arbitrary intervals

datedelta objects provide support for arbitrary calculations.

```>>> import datetime
>>> import datedelta

>>> datetime.date(2016, 3, 23) + datedelta.datedelta(years=1, months=1, days=-1)
datetime.date(2017, 4, 22)

>>> datetime.date(2016, 3, 23) - datedelta.datedelta(years=-1, months=-1, days=1)
datetime.date(2017, 4, 22)

>>> datetime.date(2016, 2, 29) + datedelta.datedelta(years=2)
datetime.date(2018, 3, 1)

>>> datetime.date(2020, 2, 29) - datedelta.datedelta(years=2)
datetime.date(2018, 3, 1)

>>> datetime.date(2016, 2, 29) + datedelta.datedelta(years=2, days=-1)
datetime.date(2018, 2, 28)

>>> datetime.date(2020, 2, 29) - datedelta.datedelta(years=2, days=1)
datetime.date(2018, 2, 28)

>>> datetime.date(2016, 2, 29) + datedelta.datedelta(years=2, months=6)
datetime.date(2018, 9, 1)

>>> datetime.date(2020, 2, 29) - datedelta.datedelta(years=2, months=-6)
datetime.date(2018, 9, 1)

>>> datetime.date(2016, 2, 29) + datedelta.datedelta(years=4)
datetime.date(2020, 2, 29)

>>> datetime.date(2020, 2, 29) - datedelta.datedelta(years=4)
datetime.date(2016, 2, 29)

>>> datetime.date(2016, 2, 29) + datedelta.datedelta(years=4, days=1)
datetime.date(2020, 3, 1)

>>> datetime.date(2020, 2, 29) - datedelta.datedelta(years=4, days=-1)
datetime.date(2016, 3, 1)

>>> datetime.date(2016, 2, 29) + datedelta.datedelta(years=4, months=6)
datetime.date(2020, 8, 29)

>>> datetime.date(2020, 2, 29) - datedelta.datedelta(years=4, months=-6)
datetime.date(2016, 8, 29)
```

These results may appear slightly surprising. However, they’re consistent, for reasons explained in the “Behavior” section below.

### Other operations

datedelta instances can be added, subtracted, and multiplied with an integer. However there are some restrictions on addition and subtraction.

As demonstrated in the “Limitations” section below, adding then subtracting a given datedelta to a date doesn’t always return the original date. In order to prevent bugs caused by this behavior, when the result of adding or subtracting two datedelta isn’t well defined, that operation raises ValueError.

```>>> import datedelta

>>> datedelta.YEAR + datedelta.YEAR
datedelta.datedelta(years=2)

>>> 3 * datedelta.YEAR
datedelta.datedelta(years=3)

>>> datedelta.YEAR - datedelta.DAY
datedelta.datedelta(years=1, days=-1)

>>> datedelta.YEAR - datedelta.YEAR
Traceback (most recent call last):
...
ValueError: cannot subtract datedeltas with same signs

>>> datedelta.datedelta(months=6) + datedelta.datedelta(months=-3)
Traceback (most recent call last):
...
ValueError: cannot add datedeltas with opposite signs
```

## Behavior

There are two date arithmetic traps in the Gregorian calendar:

1. Leap years. Problems arise when adding years to a February 29th gives a result in a non-leap year.
2. Variable number of days in months. Problems arise when adding months to a 29th, 30th or 31st gives a result in a month where that day doesn’t exist.

In both cases, the result must be changed to the first day of the next month.

This method gives consistent results provided periods are represented by (start date inclusive, end date exclusive) — that’s [start date, end date) if you prefer the mathematical notation. This representation of periods is akin to 0-based indexing, which is the convention Python uses.

For example, if someone subscribes for a year starting on 2016-02-29 inclusive, the end date must be 2017-03-01 exclusive. If it was 2016-02-28 exclusive, the subscription would be one day too short.

Operations are always performed on years, then months, then days. This order usually provides the expected behavior. It also minimizes loss of precision.

## Limitations

Additions involving datedelta are neither associative not commutative in general.

Here are two examples where adding a datedelta then subtracting it doesn’t return the original value:

```>>> import datetime
>>> import datedelta

>>> datetime.date(2020, 2, 29) + datedelta.datedelta(years=1)
datetime.date(2021, 3, 1)

>>> datetime.date(2021, 3, 1) - datedelta.datedelta(years=1)
datetime.date(2020, 3, 1)

>>> datetime.date(2020, 1, 31) + datedelta.datedelta(months=1)
datetime.date(2020, 3, 1)

>>> datetime.date(2020, 3, 1) - datedelta.datedelta(months=1)
datetime.date(2020, 2, 1)
```

Here are two examples where adding two datedelta gives a different result depending on the order of operations:

```>>> import datetime
>>> import datedelta

>>> datetime.date(2016, 2, 29) + datedelta.datedelta(months=6) + datedelta.datedelta(years=1)
datetime.date(2017, 8, 29)

>>> datetime.date(2016, 2, 29) + datedelta.datedelta(years=1) + datedelta.datedelta(months=6)
datetime.date(2017, 9, 1)

>>> datetime.date(2016, 1, 31) + datedelta.datedelta(months=2) + datedelta.datedelta(months=5)
datetime.date(2016, 8, 31)

>>> datetime.date(2016, 1, 31) + datedelta.datedelta(months=5) + datedelta.datedelta(months=2)
datetime.date(2016, 9, 1)
```

To avoid problems, you should always start from the same reference date and add a single datedelta. Don’t chain additions or subtractions.

To minimize the risk of incorrect results, datedelta only implements operations that have unambiguous semantics:

• Adding a datedelta to a date
• Subtracting a datedelta from a date
• Adding a datedelta to a datedelta when components have the same sign
• Subtracting a datedelta from a datedelta when components have opposite signs

(PEP 20 says: “In the face of ambiguity, refuse the temptation to guess.”)

## Alternatives

datedelta.datedelta is smarter than datetime.timedelta because it knows about years and months in addition to days.

datedelta.datedelta provides a subset of the features found in dateutil.relativedelta. Not only does it only support dates, but:

• It omits the “replace” behavior which is very error-prone.
• It doesn’t allow explicit control of leapdays.
• It uses keyword-only arguments.
• It requires Python 3.

Handling leap days automatically reduces the number of choices the programmer must make and thus the number of errors they can make.

Note that datedelta.datedelta adjusts non-existing days to the first day of the next month while dateutil.relativedelta adjusts them to the last day of the current month.

If you’re stuck with Python 2, just copy the code, make datedelta inherit from object, and remove the * in the signature of __init__.

If you’re comfortable with dateutil and don’t mind its larger footprint, there’s little to gain by switching to datedelta.

## Changelog

### 1.2

• Optimize hashing and pickling.

### 1.1

• Add YEAR, MONTH, and DAY constants.

### 1.0

• Initial stable release.

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