Data Structure
Handling Timezones in Laravel Applications

Handling Timezones in Laravel Applications

Timezones play a crucial role in web applications, especially when dealing with date and time data. In this tutorial, we’ll explore how to handle timezones effectively in Laravel applications, covering storing date/time values in UTC, converting timezones for display, and validating data based on specific timezones.

Storing Date and Time Values in UTC

Laravel provides convenient ways to work with date and time values. By default, Laravel stores date and time values in the UTC timezone, which is a recommended practice for database storage. This ensures consistency across different systems and mitigates issues related to timezone offsets.

To ensure that Laravel is configured to use UTC, check the config/app.php file and verify that the timezone setting is set to 'UTC'.

Adding Default Timezone Setting to Company Profiles

In many applications, users may belong to different organizations or companies, each with its own timezone preference. To accommodate this, we’ll add a default_timezone column to the company_profiles table.

First, create a migration to add the column:

php artisan make:migration add_default_timezone_to_company_profiles_table --table=company_profiles

Define the column in the migration file:

public function up()
    Schema::table('company_profiles', function (Blueprint $table) {

Run the migration to apply the changes:

php artisan migrate

Converting Timezones for Display

When displaying date and time values to users, it’s essential to convert them from UTC to the user’s preferred timezone. We can achieve this by setting the application’s timezone dynamically based on the user’s company profile.

To accomplish this, we’ll create a middleware named SetCompanyTimezone. This middleware will intercept incoming requests and set the application’s timezone accordingly.

Create the middleware using Artisan:

php artisan make:middleware SetCompanyTimezone

Implement the middleware logic in app/Http/Middleware/SetCompanyTimezone.php:

namespace App\Http\Middleware;

use Closure;
use Illuminate\Support\Facades\Auth;

class SetCompanyTimezone
    public function handle($request, Closure $next)
        if ($user = Auth::user()) {
            $timezone = $user->companyProfile->default_timezone;
            config(['app.timezone' => $timezone]);

        return $next($request);

Register the middleware in app/Http/Kernel.php:

protected $middlewareGroups = [
    'web' => [
    'api' => [

Validating Data According to Timezones

In scenarios where data validation depends on specific timezones, it’s crucial to handle timezone conversions appropriately. You can achieve this by converting the input data to the desired timezone before performing validation.

For example, if you’re validating shifts, ensure that you’re using the company’s timezone. You can create custom validation rules or closures for more complex validation logic, incorporating timezone conversions as needed.

By following these steps, you can effectively manage timezones in your Laravel applications, ensuring accurate handling of date and time data across different users and organizations.

Thank you

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