PHP Date Examples: compare 2 dates, last day of the month, current date and time

This article contains various tips for using date in PHP.

Get current date and time with defined format

print date("Y-m-d H:i:s");
print date("m-d-Y");

Starting from PHP 5.2, we can use DateTime class

$timezone = new DateTimeZone('EDT');
$datetime = new DateTime();
print $datetime->format('Y\-m\-d\ h:i:s');

Get current timestamp

print time();

Convert date time string to timestamp

print strtotime(date('Y-m-d H:i:s'));

Compare date time

1. Convert all to timestamp then compare them as number.

if ( strtotime('2020-01-05') > strtotime(date('Y-m-d', mktime(0, 0, 0, 1, 5, 2020))) )
   // do something

2. Convert all to DateTime object then compare

if (new DateTime('2020-01-05') < new DateTime()){
	echo 'Left is smaller';

Get the last day of a month

PHP date() function can return the number of days in the month of a given date. Just use “t” when providing format to the function.

$d = "2020-12-01";
echo date("t", strtotime($d)); //output: 31

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