Matching the right pattern

  • 1 September 2022
  • 4 replies

Hey everyone,


I have a zap that listens for a Discord message then searches that message for a date and time. To search for the pattern of the date I’m using “Extract Pattern” on the Formatter using this pattern: 


Essentially this is just looking for all variations of typing the date. This works pretty well except when people put a 4 digit year. Even though I have the pattern in there, the zap just picks the first two digits out of the year and thinks it’s found the MM/DD/YY pattern instead. So now people putting the date 2022 are having their events post in ‘20. I’ve tried putting the 4 digit year pattern at the beginning and end of the “Pattern” field but this continues to happen either way.


How can I make sure the zap searches for the 4 digit year first and if it finds it, uses that instead of looking for another possible match?



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4 replies

Userlevel 7
Badge +12

Hi @FWD!

I am by no means a regex expert, but I did some Googling and found this expression, which might help:



I think that the format of this will match for dates that are day/month/year, so if you’re working with US formatted dates, you’ll need to switch it around a bit. I found a way of testing it on this site. As an fyi, that’s not an official Zapier resources, just something a found with some Googling, so do check the formula for yourself before you use it. 


If anyone else has any ideas on how to edit @FWD’s query to account for years that may be 2 or 4 digits, it’d be great to hear them!

Hey Danvers,


This seems to capture some date formats but not all of them. I unfortunately don’t have the know how to fix this to include the ones I need which are:





Just a quick update, I found a good expression: ^(?:(?:(?:0?[13578]|1[02])(\/|-|\.)31)\1|(?:(?:0?[1,3-9]|1[0-2])(\/|-|\.)(?:29|30)\2))(?:(?:1[6-9]|[2-9]\d)?\d{2})$|^(?:0?2(\/|-|\.)29\3(?:(?:(?:1[6-9]|[2-9]\d)?(?:0[48]|[2468][048]|[13579][26])|(?:(?:16|[2468][048]|[3579][26])00))))$|^(?:(?:0?[1-9])|(?:1[0-2]))(\/|-|\.)(?:0?[1-9]|1\d|2[0-8])\4(?:(?:1[6-9]|[2-9]\d)?\d{2})$


That matches all formats I need, however it doesn’t seem to extract the pattern out of a wall of text. Only if the only input is the date itself. For my purposes, I need the expression to find the date in a wall of text like this:

Date to be sent: 09/05/2022
Time to be sent: 10:00AM


Can someone please help me modify this to search in the full message and not only look for the full message to match the pattern? Thanks in advance!

Userlevel 7
Badge +9

Hey @FWD! I’ve checked with a few folks on our end but unfortunately, we’re not super familiar/well-versed in regex expressions. 😔 So while we can’t help from the Zapier side, I will leave this thread open incase there is another community member who might be able to help!

CCing @Troy Tessalone, @MohSwellam @Moshe770 and @andywingrave here incase any of y’all have ideas to share!