Calculate a Week Range for a Date

Published on 2013-03-07 19:39:54.168594+00:00
date   isocalendar   python   range  

Math with dates and date ranges is often fun & enlightening! As a testament to the fun of calculating dates (particularly ranges of dates), I present the following:

Given a date, how would you find the range of dates that describe the week during which your original date lies? In other words, assume today is March 7, 2013 (and it is... for now anyway). Can you answer these two questions:

  1. What was last Sunday's date?
  2. What will be the date on Saturday?

NOTE: I'm assuming weeks start on Sunday and end on Saturday. I'm in the US and that's how people in my area typically define a "week".

Here's some Python code that calculates this. (also available at

from datetime import timedelta

def week_range(date):
    """Find the first/last day of the week for the given day.
    Assuming weeks start on Sunday and end on Saturday.

    Returns a tuple of ``(start_date, end_date)``.

    # isocalendar calculates the year, week of the year, and day of the week.
    # dow is Mon = 1, Sat = 6, Sun = 7
    year, week, dow = date.isocalendar()

    # Find the first day of the week.
    if dow == 7:
        # Since we want to start with Sunday, let's test for that condition.
        start_date = date
        # Otherwise, subtract `dow` number days to get the first day
        start_date = date - timedelta(dow)

    # Now, add 6 for the last day of the week (i.e., count up to Saturday)
    end_date = start_date + timedelta(6)

    return (start_date, end_date)

Now, playing with this in a python shell...

>>> from datetime import datetime
>>> d = datetime(2013, 3, 7)
>>> week_range(d)
(datetime.datetime(2013, 3, 3, 0, 0),
 datetime.datetime(2013, 3, 9, 0, 0))

This is also useful if you've got a Django site, and you want to find the Users that joined during a certain week:

>>> from django.contrib.auth.models import User
>>> d = datetime(2013, 3, 7)
>>> week = week_range(d)
>>> User.objects.filter(date_joined__range=week)
[<User ...>, ...]

Cool, huh. Check out the docs for timedelta and isocalendar for more information.