How do I convert datetime string with optional part to a date object?

Since JDK 8, we can create a datetime formatter / parser pattern that can have optional sections. When parsing a datetime string that contains optional values, for example, a date without time part or a datetime without second part, we can create a parsing pattern wrapped within the [] symbols. The [ character is the optional section start symbol, and the ] character is the optional section end symbol. The pattern inside this symbol will be considered as an optional value.

We can use the java.time.format.DateTimeFormatter class to parse the string of datetime or format the datetime object, and use it with the new Java time API classes such as java.time.LocalDate or java.time.LocalDateTime to convert the string into respective LocalDate or LocalDateTime object as show in the code snippet below.

package org.kodejava.datetime;

import java.time.LocalDate;
import java.time.LocalDateTime;
import java.time.format.DateTimeFormatter;

public class DateTimeParseOptionalParts {
    public static final String OPT_TIME_PATTERN = "yyyy-MM-dd[ HH:mm[:ss]]";
    public static final String OPT_SECOND_PATTERN = "yyyy-MM-dd HH:mm[:ss]";

    public static void main(String[] args) {
        DateTimeFormatter optTimeFormatter = DateTimeFormatter.ofPattern(OPT_TIME_PATTERN);
        LocalDate date1 = LocalDate.parse("2023-08-28", optTimeFormatter);
        LocalDate date2 = LocalDate.parse("2023-08-28 17:15", optTimeFormatter);
        LocalDate date3 = LocalDate.parse("2023-08-28 17:15:30", optTimeFormatter);
        System.out.println("date1 = " + date1);
        System.out.println("date2 = " + date2);
        System.out.println("date3 = " + date3);

        DateTimeFormatter optSecondFormatter = DateTimeFormatter.ofPattern(OPT_SECOND_PATTERN);
        LocalDateTime datetime1 = LocalDateTime.parse("2023-08-28 17:15", optSecondFormatter);
        LocalDateTime datetime2 = LocalDateTime.parse("2023-08-28 17:15:30", optSecondFormatter);
        System.out.println("datetime1 = " + datetime1);
        System.out.println("datetime2 = " + datetime2);

Here are the outputs of the code snippet above:

date1 = 2023-08-28
date2 = 2023-08-28
date3 = 2023-08-28
datetime1 = 2023-08-28T17:15
datetime2 = 2023-08-28T17:15:30

How do I discover the quarter of a given date?

The following code snippet shows you a various way to get the quarter of a given date. Some methods that we use below are:

  • Using the new java.time API of Java 8 IsoFields.QUARTER_OF_YEAR.
  • Using Java 8 DateTimeFormatter pattern of Q or q. The length of “q” give us a different result.
  • Using java.util.Date.
  • Using java.util.Calendar.
  • Get the quarter from an array of string.

Let’s see the code snippet in action.

package org.kodejava.datetime;

import java.time.LocalDate;
import java.time.format.DateTimeFormatter;
import java.time.temporal.IsoFields;
import java.util.Calendar;
import java.util.Date;
import java.util.Locale;

public class DateQuarter {
    public static void main(String[] args) {
        // Using Java 8
        LocalDate now =;
        int quarter = now.get(IsoFields.QUARTER_OF_YEAR);
        System.out.println("quarter  = " + quarter);

        // Using DateTimeFormatter Q / q, set the Locale to get value
        // in local format
        String quarter1 = LocalDate.of(2023, 8, 17)
                .format(DateTimeFormatter.ofPattern("q", Locale.US));
        String quarter2 = LocalDate.of(2023, 8, 17)
                .format(DateTimeFormatter.ofPattern("qq", Locale.US));
        String quarter3 = LocalDate.of(2023, 8, 17)
                .format(DateTimeFormatter.ofPattern("qqq", Locale.US));
        String quarter4 = LocalDate.of(2023, 8, 17)
                .format(DateTimeFormatter.ofPattern("qqqq", Locale.US));
        System.out.println("quarter1 = " + quarter1);
        System.out.println("quarter2 = " + quarter2);
        System.out.println("quarter3 = " + quarter3);
        System.out.println("quarter4 = " + quarter4);

        // Using older version of Java
        Date today = new Date();
        quarter = (today.getMonth() / 3) + 1;
        System.out.println("quarter = " + quarter);

        // Using java.util.Calendar object. For certain date
        // we can set the calendar date using setTime() method.
        Calendar calendar = Calendar.getInstance();
        quarter = (calendar.get(Calendar.MONTH) / 3) + 1;
        System.out.println("quarter = " + quarter);

        // Custom the quarter as text
        String[] quarters = new String[]{"Q1", "Q2", "Q3", "Q4"};
        String quarterString = quarters[quarter - 1];
        System.out.println("quarterString = " + quarterString);

And here are the result of the code snippet above:

quarter  = 1
quarter1 = 3
quarter2 = 03
quarter3 = Q3
quarter4 = 3rd quarter
quarter = 1
quarter = 1
quarterString = Q1

How do I get all Sundays of the year in Java?

You need to create a holiday calendar for your application. One of the functionality is to include all Sundays of the year as a holiday for your calendar. The following code snippet will show you how to get all Sundays of the given year.

First we need to find the first Sunday of the year using the first 3 lines of code in the main() method. After getting the first Sunday we just need to loop to add 7 days using the Period.ofDays() to the current Sunday to get the next Sunday. We stop the loop when the year of the Sunday is different to the current year.

package org.kodejava.datetime;

import java.time.DayOfWeek;
import java.time.LocalDate;
import java.time.Month;
import java.time.Period;
import java.time.format.DateTimeFormatter;
import java.time.format.FormatStyle;

import static java.time.temporal.TemporalAdjusters.firstInMonth;

public class FindAllSundaysOfTheYear {
    public static void main(String[] args) {
        // Create a LocalDate object that represent the first day of the year.
        int year = 2021;
        LocalDate now = LocalDate.of(year, Month.JANUARY, 1);
        // Find the first Sunday of the year
        LocalDate sunday = now.with(firstInMonth(DayOfWeek.SUNDAY));

        do {
            // Loop to get every Sunday by adding Period.ofDays(7) to the current Sunday.
            sunday =;
        } while (sunday.getYear() == year);

The output of this code snippet are:

Sunday, January 3, 2021
Sunday, January 10, 2021
Sunday, January 17, 2021
Sunday, January 24, 2021
Sunday, January 31, 2021
Sunday, February 7, 2021
Sunday, February 14, 2021
Sunday, February 21, 2021
Sunday, December 5, 2021
Sunday, December 12, 2021
Sunday, December 19, 2021
Sunday, December 26, 2021

How do I format date-time objects in Java 8?

In your Java application you want to format date-time objects using the new date and time API introduced in JDK 8. A solution to this problem is to use the java.time.format.DateTimeFormatter. The DateTimeFormatter class provides formatter for printing and parsing date-time objects.

With this class we can format the date-time objects using a predefined constants, there are many predefined ready to use formats, such as ISO_DATE, ISO_DATE_TIME. You can also use letters pattern to format the date-time objects, for instance using the dd MMMM yyyy. The formatter can format in localized style, in a long or medium style.

Let’s see an example below:

package org.kodejava.datetime;

import java.time.LocalDateTime;
import java.time.format.DateTimeFormatter;
import java.util.Locale;

public class DateTimeFormatterDemo {
    public static void main(String[] args) {
        // Get system current date and time.
        LocalDateTime time =;

        // Get an instance of DateTimeFormatter and print a
        // formatted version of the system current date-time
        // using a predefined formatter.
        DateTimeFormatter format = DateTimeFormatter.ISO_DATE_TIME;
        System.out.printf("Time: %s%n", time.format(format));

        // Create a custom formatter and format the date-time
        // object.
        DateTimeFormatter customFormat =
                DateTimeFormatter.ofPattern("MMMM d, yyyy hh:mm a");
        System.out.printf("Time: %s%n", time.format(customFormat));

        // Create a custom formatter with locale and format the
        // date-time object.
        DateTimeFormatter localeFormat =
                DateTimeFormatter.ofPattern("d MMM yyyy HH:mm:ss",
        System.out.printf("Time: %s%n", time.format(localeFormat));

The results of the code above are:

Time: 2021-11-16T07:51:16.1247212
Time: November 16, 2021 07:51 AM
Time: 16 nov. 2021 07:51:16

How do I convert Date to String?

package org.kodejava.text;

import java.text.DateFormat;
import java.text.SimpleDateFormat;
import java.time.LocalDate;
import java.time.format.DateTimeFormatter;
import java.util.Calendar;
import java.util.Date;

public class DateToString {
    public static void main(String[] args) {
        // Create an instance of SimpleDateFormat used for formatting
        // the string representation of date (day/month/year)
        String pattern = "dd/MM/yyyy";
        DateFormat df = new SimpleDateFormat(pattern);

        // Get the date today using Calendar object.
        Date today = Calendar.getInstance().getTime();

        // Using DateFormat format method we can create a string
        // representation of a date with the defined format.
        String reportDate = df.format(today);

        // Print what date is today!
        System.out.println("Report Date: " + reportDate);

        // Using Java 8.
        // Creates a DateTimeFormatter using the ofPattern() method. Get
        // the current date by calling the .now() method of LocalDate.
        // To convert to string use the format() method of the LocalDate
        // and pass the formatter object as argument.
        DateTimeFormatter formatter = DateTimeFormatter.ofPattern(pattern);
        LocalDate now =;
        reportDate = now.format(formatter);
        System.out.println("Report Date: " + reportDate);