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Time zones for formula datetime fields

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obzervr
4 - Data Explorer
4 - Data Explorer

I'm trying to find a way to display time zone for a 'formula' field that ends up being a datetime, in the same way that time zone works for actual datetime fields.

I've reviewed the new SET_TIMEZONE function and some posts here, but not finding an answer.

A simple scenario to help clarify:

- A have a datetime field, my settings are to use the user's time zone when presenting datetimes. So that everyone from around the world understands what time is referred relative to their time. E.g. a meeting start time

- I also have a formula field that calculates a different datetime using the datetime field mentioned above, for example, add x hours to that date time to produce a new date time.

- Now, this is where it all falls apart. The formula field doesn't behave like a regular datetime field, even though, for all intents and purposes outside of its own calculation, I want it to work as though it was a regular datetime field.

- It would appear, that I have no way of this formula datetime appears with the user's time zone, like all my other datetime fields are doing. I can either 1) pick one time zone for the formula field and use the SET_TIMEZONE function to define it. Or 2) present the formula field in GMT and confuse everyone.

Are my assumptions above correct? Or is there some function or capability missing to achieve this?

What I was expecting was for the DATETIME_FORMAT function to support a 'Z' format that indicates the need to present in the user's time zone. But this does not appear to be the case.

All help and comments appreciated, I'm here to learn.

1 Reply 1
ScottWorld
18 - Pluto
18 - Pluto

@obzervr 

Time zones are extremely tricky in Airtable, and Airtable might not always be the best tool to use if you’re relying heavily on using different time zones in your system. (For example, for people who are creating a booking system, they may want to use Calendly to book appointments and then a tool like Make to bring that data into Airtable afterwards.)

However, for your needs, it sounds like your needs are simple enough that it should all be able to be accomplished by Airtable.

My time zone base and training video might help clarify some things. There is also an active discussion going on here about this very same topic — you can chime in there with any additional questions you might have.