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0.10 (stable)
Casting

Casting refers to the operation of converting a value in a particular data type to the corresponding value in another data type. Casting can occur either implicitly or explicitly. The syntax described here performs an explicit cast. More information on casting can be found on the typecasting page.

Explicit Casting

The standard SQL syntax for explicit casting is CAST(expr AS TYPENAME), where TYPENAME is a name (or alias) of one of DuckDB’s data types. DuckDB also supports the shorthand expr::TYPENAME, which is also present in PostgreSQL.

SELECT CAST(i AS VARCHAR) FROM generate_series(1, 3) tbl(i);
-- "1", "2", "3"
SELECT i::DOUBLE FROM generate_series(1, 3) tbl(i);
-- 1.0, 2.0, 3.0

Casting Rules

Not all casts are possible. For example, it is not possible to convert an INTEGER to a DATE. Casts may also throw errors when the cast could not be successfully performed. For example, trying to cast the string 'hello' to an INTEGER will result in an error being thrown.

SELECT CAST('hello' AS INTEGER);
Conversion Error: Could not convert string 'hello' to INT32

The exact behavior of the cast depends on the source and destination types. For example, when casting from VARCHAR to any other type, the string will be attempted to be converted.

TRY_CAST

TRY_CAST can be used when the preferred behavior is not to throw an error, but instead to return a NULL value. TRY_CAST will never throw an error, and will instead return NULL if a cast is not possible.

SELECT TRY_CAST('hello' AS INTEGER);
-- NULL
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Last modified: 2024-04-18