How to Account for Daylight Savings on Your Blog

As you know if you’ve ever checked out your stats, your blog is aligned with the UTC time zone. UTC is similar to GMT, except that it doesn’t get changed twice a year for daylight savings it’s based on the atomic clock and is therefore more precise. This method allows us to keep the stats database lean and fast. That translates into free stats for everyone!

Because of this, you will need to account for Daylight Savings Time manually. Believe it or not, it’s already time for the the “fall back” daylight savings change in the U.S.: tomorrow, Sunday, November 2.

To account for Daylight Savings Time, log in to your dashboard, click on Settings > General, and scroll to Timezone. Then change your timezone to one hour behind your actual time zone. If you have your timezone set to, for example, UTC-7 (PDT), you’ll need to change it to UTC-8. Think of it like taking a virtual vacation.

We’ll make another announcement before the “spring forward” change, which is on March 8, 2009.

UPDATE 11/02: This post now includes updated info re: UTC vs. GMT and a note that Nov. 2 is the Daylight Savings Time change date in the United States. Thanks for your comments.

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  1. eideard

    Thanks for the reminder. Been a geek so long, I forget everything still isn’t automattic [har!].


  2. Deirdre

    Perhaps you could consider going global. Those of us in Australia had to change our time weeks ago.


  3. pacer521

    great post!


  4. Manuel Reis

    Yeah, here in Portugal and the rest of EU countries, the DST change was last week.


  5. Harshad Joshi

    I want it for IST.


  6. wonderingpilgrim

    Or in Western Australia one week ago! Trouble is, each jurisdiction has its own way approach to DLS – even in the USA. Was there in August and crossed three state borders (same longitude) twice in two days and the hands on my watch are still spinning! One standard time and adjust local manually seems very practical to this non-geek.


  7. qbit

    Late. That time change was last week here.


  8. desire2will

    how come my debut post has the date it is in London when i’m not in London & assiduously changed to my local time zone but the date stamp keeps insisting on the London date? no offense to London, a great little town.


  9. ibsconsulting

    Thanks for your effort

    it is useful


  10. Jo

    UTC is similar to GMT, except that it doesn’t get changed twice a year for daylight savings.

    GMT never changes! Here in the UK, we reverted back to GMT from BST (British Summer Time = GMT+1) last Sunday.


  11. travelrat

    Can I correct you here?

    UTC is the same as GMT … but it’s worked out using atomic radiation rather than the stars. Daylight saving time over here is known as BST (British Summer Time)

    (and, like the last poster said, the clocks changed in Britain, and most of Europe, last week)




  12. tsfiles

    Since some of us rarely need to click on “settings,” it can be found in the upper right of your Dashboard screen.



  13. deigratia

    Oh the time did change!? Woah, having too much fun almost missed it!! LOL
    Thanks for the hint! 🙂


  14. artpredator

    yay! love that extra hour! last year i spent that extra hour starting my blog so happy blogoversary to me!

    and thanks for this timely mention–it just answered an argument we were having about whether it was this weekend or next!


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  16. νατασσάκι

    we already did it, last week
    But thank you


  17. katroboy

    Heather Thanks for your information..
    just to make sure, if before i set +7 then now i set +6 right?? not +8 ??? hehehe.. sorry if i look like an ‘idiot’ asking like this.. 😀


  18. Reynie

    One week to late. 😉


  19. murky

    This excellent plugin should be part of the core:


  20. burstdragon

    thank you


  21. katm

    YAY for countries that don’t do the stupid DST thing. I love living in Korea!


  22. びっくり

    Here in Japan we don’t screw around unnecessarily with the clocks. Why would you want it to be dark when you are coming home from work in the Winter? Just doesn’t make sense. 🙂


  23. m@q

    In Netherlands, it has been changed last Sunday…


  24. darrencarter332

    THANK YOU! Now I can sleep a little bit longer =)


  25. Brigitte

    Sniff, bye bye sunlight.

    Thanks for the reminder!


  26. Stuart

    As others have also said – don’t forget there are other bloggers out there – we don’t all live in the US!


  27. Ron

    And last week in the UK. Doesn’t matter, though, as GMT and UTC are the same. GMT doesn’t change twice a year, though, that’s a fallacy. We move the clocks forward an hour for British Summer Time, but GMT doesn’t change at all – it’s a constant. GMT is the same all over the world, no matter what the local time zone (BST is merely a local, and temporary, time zone), a fact mariners have depended upon for centuries for accurate navigation. It’s still needed even in these days of GPS. In the event of system failure, navigators still need to know how to do it manually. amd for that they need GMT.


  28. Stazybο Hοrn
  29. dhconcerts

    I’m still trying to figure out how many hours sleep I got before the cat woke me to go out! 😉


  30. James D Hartland

    “UTC is similar to GMT, except that it doesn’t get changed twice a year for daylight savings”

    I don’t wanna be “well actually…” but that statement stood out to me because it’s really factually incorrect, like in a way that makes no sense. GMT never changes, if it did that would make no sense what so ever as all other time zones are derived from it and not all time zones need to change to account for daylight saving. GMT is always the same, and everything else is calculated relative to it, including for example BST which is British Summer Time.

    According to Wikipedia UTC is basically the new (from the early 70s onwards) way of measuring time that uses atomic clocks and compensates for the variations in the speed of the earth rotating. Since UTC uses the same time zone as GMT the two terms are pretty much interchangeable.


  31. kidsenergyburner

    I’m not sure why WordPress still can not support timezones properly. The algorithms are available as an open source for a long time (for example, Linux). What they do basically is: store any time-related information in UTC (Universal Time Clock) but present it according to user settings. All modern operating systems support this mechanism making WordPress ready for it.

    As we know there are 3 types of WordPress installations:
    – hosted by
    – hosted by owners on servers of hosting company
    – hosted by owners on own servers

    Last 2 types are The 3rd type is relatively rare. Hosting companies and supposed to be updated on regular basis and would not miss operating system update for timezone info. These, in turn, make WordPress installation awared of timezone table update.

    Look forward for implementation of this universal solution in WordPress code.


  32. woofmccol

    It was last week here but I still forgot about it, thanks for the reminder!


  33. midtwentiesennui

    Holy crap, thanks for the reminder.


  34. - Mixturey -

    I’m in EST Time Can anyone tell me what time zone I need to be under on WordPress?


  35. hkpvxprs

    Hey thx for the reminder i totally forgot.


  36. Селицкас Павел

    In Belarus we had already falled back the savings change.

    But as for me, i forgot to change the UTC zone 😦


  37. JohnJones

    GMT does not change… ever

    ask yourself this why do air-forces use Zulu time ?


    John Jones


  38. Fran

    thanks for the note…


  39. mkarnaze

    Thanks for the reminder, it’s kind of fun to change it manually…


  40. satur9

    Thanks for pointing that out. I didn’t know I had to change the time manually 🙂


  41. the rufus

    Thanks, Heather, I like vacations. 😆


  42. hoh

    GMT does not get changed twice a year nor once – it never changes!
    various countries use summer time so they add or subtract at their will – gmt stays the same

    Greenwich Mean Time (GMT)
    Former name for mean solar time of the longitude (0°) of the former Royal Observatory at Greenwich, England, or Greenwich meridian. GMT was used to avoid potentially confusing references to local time systems (zones). In accord with tradition, 0000 GMT (denoting the start of a solar day) occurred at noon. In 1925 the numbering system for GMT was changed so that the day (like the civil day) began at midnight. Some confusion resulted, and in 1928 the International Astronomical Union changed the designation of the standard time of the zero meridian to Universal Time, which remains in general use. The term GMT is still used for some purposes (including navigation) in English-speaking countries.


  43. madsilence

    Thanks Heather. As a novice blogger I had no idea I had to adjust for the time change. I keep thinking locally while WordPress is an international platform.


  44. Izzy

    I had to look up what my GMT time was because I hadn’t ever heard of it before. Now my blog is on the correct time AND I learned something new. Thanks!


  45. miconian

    Since the stats are already in UTC, it is not useful for me to think of them as corresponding to actual days in my time zone. Therefore, whether or not my stats are “correctly” set for daylight savings time is meaningless to me.


  46. Detroit87

    Ohh. Thanks for telling us 😀


  47. James

    Y’know, this should really be handled automattically…


  48. frauke

    I want these glasses… 🙂


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  50. yvettehampton

    Thanks for the reminder. I have linked to this post in all of my blogs, to help spread the word.


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  52. familyforest

    Aloha and thanks. I did not realize this.


  53. Robert T.

    I have a question, since this has always confused me..why does it seem that on the stats graphs, the days always end at 8 pm real time? Because whenever I look at my stats after 8 pm, it’s gone all the way down because it thinks its a new day. This makes it harder to track how many views I actually got that day. I made sure I have the right time setting. (I’m in the EST zone which is UTC – 5). Does anyone know what the problem could be?


  54. casper™

    thanks for the reminder.. here in Portugal and all U.E. has changed last week..



  55. Heather

    @ all: Thanks for your comments. I’ve clarified the line on GMT vs. UTC and included a note that Nov. 2 is the date for the United States.


  56. Dave

    We have to change time too up here in the great white north (Canada).


  57. Steve L.

    uhhh GMT, Zulu and UCT are the same give or take 0.9 seconds, so the same in reality as far as my sleeping in is concerned


  58. scaryreasoner

    This is ridiculous. You ought to be able to choose a single timezone which does the right thing with respect to daylight savings time automatically.

    Unix/linux has been able to do this for many decades.


  59. johnbellone

    Pretty sweet. Its nice to know that the little things are being thought of. Thanks Heather and everyone at Automattic.


  60. quinncreative

    Except if you live in Arizona, which doesn’t use (and has no use for) Daylight Saving Time. We don’t need more sunshine, we got plenty. -Q


  61. njgarrod

    thank you!


  62. Rebel Without a Sauce

    I never did accounting at school. :/


  63. Otto

    @murky: Thanks for the plug for the Automatic Timezone plugin. I’m glad people find it useful.

    With any luck, I’ll get code similar to my plugin pushed into core for the 2.8 release. Hopefully.


  64. hiphiphura

    in indonesia we don’t have daylight saving. it’s nice to know about it…


  65. PiotreX

    I spent the extra hour we got here last weekend by watching NFL an hour earlier than usual. the games were at 9PM instead of the usual 10PM. cool, huh? 🙂


  66. Mabel Iam

    Thanks for reminder me!!


  67. charlottesal

    Arizonans don’t need auto daylight savings time because we don’t switch our clocks.


  68. domestic empire


    @ all: Thanks for your comments. I’ve clarified the line on GMT vs. UTC and included a note that Nov. 2 is the date for the United States.”

    Indeed. Contrary to what some people think, it’s the Earth revolves around the sun. (“;)


  69. Shirley

    We here in Arizona are one of those who do not regard daylight savings time. Funny thing, though, my Apple laptop changed my clock to daylight savings time–a strange act for such a remarkable little white rectangle.


  70. Yonatan Prasdikatama

    Nice tutorial. 🙂 But, do you have any idea of posting from software to the

    i’m waiting for it. 🙂


  71. johnceberhardt

    Yes Heather, getting rid of it would be best.

    I like charlottesal’s comment:
    “Arizonans don’t need auto daylight savings time because we don’t switch our clocks.”

    I wish I could move there.



  72. lauracrews

    Just a note from an English teacher:

    It’s daylight saving time, NOT daylight SAVINGS time.

    It was created to SAVE time not to send time to a savings and loan.



  73. Raul

    Sadly, it annoys me that WordPress cuts my stats counter at 5:00pm PST. I have to average my daily stats, and that’s really annoying.


  74. Селицкас Павел

    I will pray wordpress to have an auto-DST-changer function in the next version… ^_^


  75. rfanalv

    thanks for reminder


  76. MuslimahBlog

    Thanks for the reminder!


  77. Lilja

    A good reminder – even though I live in a country where we just use CMT and don’t change a thing all year round. Of course we always have to remember when all the others change their clock 😉 Thanks!


  78. malcite

    to lazy to really care about changing it. Living outside the US we also turned the clock a bit earlier too and when in addition following the GMT standard it really makes alot of confusion. When are we going to get rid of it altogether and rather try and get a timetable that accounts for not only daylight savings but also leap years. Its only trouble anyway


  79. notedscholar

    Time is just motion so I don’t think we need to!


  80. seeingredaz

    Notice to Arizonans:
    Remember that this notice doesn’t apply to you. Arizona is the only state that DOES NOT participate in daylight savings time.


  81. reiciello

    we don’t have DST here in the Philippines as well…….. never wondered why, haha!


  82. Logan

    Is there some way that the function can still be automatic? Like choosing your time zone, and requesting that the time be automatically adjusted for DST? This manual changing stuff seems a little archaic to me.


  83. Douglas

    Hi all,

    We know it is in an inconvenience to have to update the time manually and apologize about this. At the moment, this is how WordPress is coded, but that doesn’t mean it won’t or cannot be done automatically in the future.


  84. reamemo

    Thank you for reminder.. nice post


  85. David

    hmmm, thanks for the reminder.. never thought of it actually…


  86. budeg

    I don’t think my country has it.


  87. nickie wang

    Thanks for the post. Now I no longer have to wonder every time I out check my stats.


  88. solomonproject

    Thanks for the information. When I figure out how to get my laptop to give me the current time in London
    as opposed to the time at home Canada, I’ll deal with the daylight savings time. Just getting started as the first blog response. Pretty exciting. Read about the site in the magazine on the plane.


  89. satguru0

    thanks for the service. everyone feel happy when someone remind the things & time.


  90. perus

    Thanks for reminder me, – perus !


  91. Parikshith Mamidi

    thankful for the reminder


  92. Ithaca Real Estate Broker

    Thanks for the heads up. It would be great to have this changed automatically.


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