Time in Europe

Last updated
Time in Europe:
Western European Time / Greenwich Mean Time (UTC)
Western European Time / Greenwich Mean Time (UTC)
Western European Summer Time / British Summer Time / Irish Standard Time (UTC+1)
Central European Time (UTC+1)
Central European Summer Time (UTC+2)
Eastern European Time / Kaliningrad Time (UTC+2)
Eastern European Time (UTC+2)
Eastern European Summer Time (UTC+3)
Moscow Time / Turkey Time (UTC+3)
### pale colours: standard time observed all year;
### dark colours: summer time observed Time zones of Europe.svg
Time in Europe :
Western European Time / Greenwich Mean Time (UTC)
Western European Time / Greenwich Mean Time (UTC)
Western European Summer Time / British Summer Time / Irish Standard Time (UTC+1)
Central European Time (UTC+1)
Central European Summer Time (UTC+2)
Eastern European Time / Kaliningrad Time (UTC+2)
Eastern European Time (UTC+2)
Eastern European Summer Time (UTC+3)
Moscow Time / Turkey Time (UTC+3)
 pale colours: standard time observed all year;
 dark colours: summer time observed

Europe spans seven primary time zones (from UTC−01:00 to UTC+05:00), excluding summer time offsets (four of them can be seen on the map, with one further-western zone containing the Azores, and two further-eastern zones spanning Georgia, Azerbaijan, eastern territories of European Russia, and the European part of Kazakhstan). Most European countries use summer time and harmonise their summer time adjustments; see Summer time in Europe for details.

Contents

The time zones actually in use in Europe differ significantly from uniform zoning based purely on longitude, as used for example under the nautical time system. The world could in theory be divided into 24 time zones, each of 15 degrees of longitude. However, due to geographical and cultural factors it is not practical to divide the world so evenly, and actual time zones may differ significantly from those based purely on longitude. In Europe, the widespread use of Central European Time (CET) causes major variations in some areas from solar time. Based on solar time, CET would range from 7.5 to 22.5°E. However, for example Spain (almost entirely in the Western hemisphere) and France (almost entirely west of 7.5°E, as illustrated in the map below) should theoretically use UTC, as they did before the Second World War. [1] The general result is a solar noon which is much later than clock noon, and later sunrises and sunsets than should theoretically happen. The Benelux countries should also theoretically use GMT.

Russia and Belarus observed "permanent summer time" between March 2011 and October 2014. [2] Since October 2014 Russia has observed "permanent winter time". Iceland can be considered to be on "de facto" permanent summer time because, since 1968, it uses UTC time all year, despite being located more than 15° west of the prime meridian. It should therefore be located in UTC−01:00, but chooses to remain closer to continental European time, resulting in legal times significantly in advance of local solar time; this is of little practical significance owing to the wide variations in daylight hours in that country.

The European Commission proposed in September 2018 ending the observance of summer time in the EU. [3] In March 2019, the European Parliament voted in favour of proposing ending seasonal clock changes in 2021. [4] Legislation of the EU is decided by both the Parliament and the Council of the European Union, and the Council had not made its decision. [5] Each Member State had until April 2020 to decide whether to remain permanently on their previous "summer time" or their "winter time".

This map shows the difference between legal time and local mean time in Europe during the winter. Most of Western Europe and western part of European Russia are significantly ahead of local solar time. Tzdiff-Europe-winter.png
This map shows the difference between legal time and local mean time in Europe during the winter. Most of Western Europe and western part of European Russia are significantly ahead of local solar time.
ColourLegal time vs local mean time
1 h ± 30 m behind
0 h ± 30 m
1 h ± 30 m ahead
2 h ± 30 m ahead
This map shows the difference between legal time and local mean time in Europe during the summer. Most of Western Europe is significantly ahead of local solar time. Tzdiff-Europe-summer.png
This map shows the difference between legal time and local mean time in Europe during the summer. Most of Western Europe is significantly ahead of local solar time.
ColourLegal time vs local mean time
1 h ± 30 m behind
0 h ± 30 m
1 h ± 30 m ahead
2 h ± 30 m ahead
3 h ± 30 m ahead

Use

Of the 27 EU member states (all use daylight saving time in the summer):

Of non-EU member states:

The overseas territories of Denmark, France, and Netherlands are mostly located outside Europe and use other time zones.

List of time zones

Time of DayCommon name(s)UTCSummer
UTC
Users
16:03, 2 April 2022 UTC−01:00 [refresh]Further-western European Time (FWT) / Azores Time (AZOT) UTC−1 UTC Azores (Portugal)
17:03, 2 April 2022 UTC±00:00 [refresh]Further-western European Summer Time (FWST) / Azores Summer Time (AZOST)
17:03, 2 April 2022 UTC±00:00 [refresh]Western European Time (WET) / Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) / Iceland Time (ICT) UTC Iceland
17:03, 2 April 2022 UTC±00:00 [refresh]Western European Time (WET) / Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) UTC UTC+1 Portugal (including Madeira);
United Kingdom;
Republic of Ireland;
Faroe Islands;
Canary Islands
18:03, 2 April 2022 UTC+01:00 [refresh]Western European Summer Time (WEST)
∟ Irish Standard Time (IST)
∟ British Summer Time (BST)
18:03, 2 April 2022 UTC+01:00 [refresh]Central European Time (CET) UTC+1 UTC+2 Most of western Europe;
Scandinavia;
Central Europe;
Central southern Europe;
Western Balkans
19:03, 2 April 2022 UTC+02:00 [refresh]Central European Summer Time (CEST)
19:03, 2 April 2022 UTC+02:00 [refresh]Eastern European Time (EET) / Kaliningrad Time (KALT) UTC+2 Kaliningrad Oblast (Russia)
19:03, 2 April 2022 UTC+02:00 [refresh]Eastern European Time (EET) UTC+2 UTC+3 Finland; Baltic states;
Ukraine; Moldova;
Romania; Bulgaria; Greece
20:03, 2 April 2022 UTC+03:00 [refresh]Eastern European Summer Time (EEST)
20:03, 2 April 2022 UTC+03:00 [refresh]Further-eastern European Time (FET)
∟ Turkey Time (TRT)
∟ Moscow Standard Time (MSK)
∟ Minsk Time (MINT)
UTC+3 Belarus;
Most of western Russia;
Turkey;
Abkhazia;
South Ossetia
21:03, 2 April 2022 UTC+04:00 [refresh]Armenia Time (AMT) / Georgia Time (GET) / Azerbaijan Time (AZT) / Samara Time (SAMT) UTC+4 Parts of western Russia;
Armenia; Artsakh; Azerbaijan; Georgia
22:03, 2 April 2022 UTC+05:00 [refresh]West Kazakhstan Time (WKT) / Yekaterinburg Time (YEKT) UTC+5 Western-central Russia
West Kazakhstan

Related Research Articles

Time zone Area that observes a uniform standard time

A time zone is an area that observes a uniform standard time for legal, commercial and social purposes. Time zones tend to follow the boundaries between countries and their subdivisions instead of strictly following longitude, because it is convenient for areas in frequent communication to keep the same time.

Western European Summer Time Time zone (UTC+01:00)

Western European Summer Time is a summer daylight saving time scheme, 1 hour ahead of Greenwich Mean Time and Coordinated Universal Time. It is used in:

Japan Standard Time Standard Time Zone in Japan

Japan Standard Time, or Japan Central Standard Time, is the standard time zone in Japan, 9 hours ahead of UTC. Japan does not observe daylight saving time, though its introduction has been debated on several occasions. During World War II, the time zone was often referred to as Tokyo Standard Time.

Alaska Time Zone Time zone in Alaska

The Alaska Time Zone observes standard time by subtracting nine hours from Coordinated Universal Time (UTC−09:00). During daylight saving time its time offset is eight hours (UTC−08:00). The clock time in this zone is based on mean solar time at the 135th meridian west of the Greenwich Observatory.

Central European Time Standard time (UTC+01:00)

Central European Time (CET) is a standard time which is 1 hour ahead of Coordinated Universal Time (UTC). The time offset from UTC can be written as UTC+01:00. It is used in most parts of Europe and in a few North African countries. CET is also known as Middle European Time and by colloquial names such as Amsterdam Time, Berlin Time, Brussels Time, Madrid Time, Paris Time, Rome Time, Warsaw Time or even Romance Standard Time (RST).

Western European Time Time zone in Europe: UTC±00:00

Western European Time is a time zone covering parts of western Europe and consists of countries using UTC±00:00. It is one of the three standard time zones in the European Union along with Central European Time and Eastern European Time.

Time in the United States U.S. time zones

Time in the United States, by law, is divided into nine standard time zones covering the states, territories and other US possessions, with most of the United States observing daylight saving time (DST) for approximately the spring, summer, and fall months. The time zone boundaries and DST observance are regulated by the Department of Transportation. Official and highly precise timekeeping services (clocks) are provided by two federal agencies: the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) ; and the United States Naval Observatory (USNO). The clocks run by these services are kept synchronized with each other as well as with those of other international timekeeping organizations.

Summer time in Europe Variation of standard clock time

Summer time in Europe is the variation of standard clock time that is applied in most European countries in the period between spring and autumn, during which clocks are advanced by one hour from the time observed in the rest of the year, with a view to making the most efficient use of seasonal daylight. It corresponds to the notion and practice of daylight saving time (DST) to be found in many other parts of the world.

Eastern European Time Time zone (UTC+2)

Eastern European Time (EET) is one of the names of UTC+02:00 time zone, 2 hours ahead of Coordinated Universal Time. The zone uses daylight saving time, so that it uses UTC+03:00 during the summer.

Central European Summer Time Time zone (UTC+2)

Central European Summer Time (CEST), sometimes referred to as Central European Daylight Time (CEDT), is the standard clock time observed during the period of summer daylight-saving in those European countries which observe Central European Time during the other part of the year. It corresponds to UTC+02:00, which makes it the same as Eastern European Time, Central Africa Time, South African Standard Time, Egypt Standard Time and Kaliningrad Time in Russia.

Moscow Time Time zone in western Russia (UTC+3)

Moscow Time is the time zone for the city of Moscow, Russia, and most of western Russia, including Saint Petersburg. It is the second-westernmost of the eleven time zones of Russia. It has been set to UTC+03:00 without DST since 26 October 2014; before that date it had been set to UTC+04:00 year-round on 27 March 2011.

UTC+03:00 Identifier for a time offset from UTC of +3

UTC+03:00 is an identifier for a time offset from UTC of +03:00. In areas using this time offset, the time is three hours later than the Coordinated Universal Time (UTC). Following the ISO 8601 standard, a time with this offset would be written as, for example, 2019-02-08T23:36:06+03:00.

Time in Russia About the 11 time zones of Russia

There are eleven time zones in Russia, which currently observe times ranging from UTC+02:00 to UTC+12:00. Daylight saving time (DST) has not been used in Russia since 26 October 2014. From 27 March 2011 to 26 October 2014, permanent DST was used.

Time in France Time zones in France and overseas territories

Metropolitan France uses Central European Time as its standard time, and observes Central European Summer Time from the last Sunday in March to the last Sunday in October. With its overseas territories, France uses 12 different time zones, more than any other country in the world.

Time in Ukraine

Time in Ukraine is defined as UTC+02:00 and in summer as UTC+03:00. Part of Eastern European Time, it is locally referred to as Kyiv Time. The change for the summer time takes place in the last week of March at 03:00 when the time is changed by an hour ahead, and the last week of October at 04:00, when the time changes an hour back. In this way, the clocks in Ukraine are always one hour ahead of those in central Europe.

Time in Portugal Time zones in Portugal

Portugal has two time zones and observes daylight saving time. Continental Portugal and Madeira use UTC+00:00, while the Azores use UTC–01:00. Daylight saving time is observed nationwide from the last Sunday in March to the last Sunday in October, so that every year, continental Portugal and Madeira temporarily use UTC+01:00, and the Azores temporarily use UTC+00:00.

Daylight saving time by country

Daylight saving time (DST), also known as summer time, is the practice of advancing clocks during part of the year, typically by one hour around spring and summer, so that daylight ends at a later time of the day. As of 2022, DST is observed in most of Europe, most of North America and parts of Asia around the Northern Hemisphere summer, and in parts of South America and Oceania around the Southern Hemisphere summer. It was also formerly observed in other areas.

Switzerland uses Central European Time (CET) during the winter as standard time, which is one hour ahead of Coordinated Universal Time (UTC+01:00), and Central European Summer Time (CEST) during the summer as daylight saving time, which is two hours ahead of Coordinated Universal Time (UTC+02:00).

Time in the Kingdom of the Netherlands is denoted by Central European Time (CET) during the winter as standard time in the Netherlands, which is one hour ahead of coordinated universal time (UTC+01:00), and Central European Summer Time (CEST) during the summer as daylight saving time, which is two hours ahead of coordinated universal time (UTC+02:00). The Caribbean Netherlands – which consist of the islands of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba – all observe Atlantic Standard Time (AST) year-round, which is four hours behind coordinated universal time (UTC−04:00).

Time in Svalbard Time zones used in Svalbard

Svalbard, an archipelago in the Arctic Ocean belonging to the Kingdom of Norway, uses Central European Time (CET) during the winter as standard time, which is one hour ahead of Coordinated Universal Time (UTC+01:00), and Central European Summer Time (CEST) during the summer as daylight saving time, which is two hours ahead of Coordinated Universal Time (UTC+02:00). This is shared with the rest of Norway, as is Svalbard's use of daylight saving time, which the territory observes annually by advancing the clock forward on the last Sunday in March and back again on the last Sunday in October. However, as Svalbard experiences midnight sun during the summer due to being located north of the Arctic Circle, it gives daylight saving time no utility, and is only observed in order to make communicating with Norway Proper more convenient. At the 74th parallel north, the midnight sun lasts 99 days and polar night 84 days, while the respective figures at the 81st parallel north are 141 and 128 days.

References

  1. Poulle, Yvonne (1999). "La France à l'heure allemande" [France on German time](PDF). Bibliothèque de l'école des chartes. 157 (2): 493–502. Retrieved 11 January 2012.(in French)[ dead link ]
  2. Parfitt, Tom (25 March 2011). "Think of the cows: clocks go forward for the last time in Russia". The Guardian . Retrieved 5 January 2012.
  3. State of the Union 2018: Q&A on the Commission's proposal to put an end to seasonal clock changes European Commission − Press Release (Strasbourg, 12 September 2018)
  4. "European Union Ready to Scrap DST". www.timeanddate.com.
  5. "Procedure File: 2018/0332(COD) | Legislative Observatory | European Parliament". oeil.secure.europarl.europa.eu.