Picture of an alarm in a beautiful pastel colored background representing the difference between two DateTime in hour.

How to get the difference between two DateTime in hour with C# ?

I am currently developing a mobile app with Xamrin.Forms and I had to know the difference between two DateTime in hours. It seems dumb, but in fact, it is quite tough to find a smart and optimised way to do it. I wanted to share with you the solution I found.


First, let's look at the basics.

  • DateTime.Substract(DateTime) lets us to substract the first date by the second one. It returns a TimeSpan value and it represents a time interval.
  • TimeSpan is in fact, an instance that represents the difference between 2 DateTime objects. To learn more about this type, go here.
  • TimeSpan.TotalHours is the property that interests us. It gets the value of the current TimeSpan structure expressed in whole and fractional hours and its value type is a double.
  • If you need the hour difference without a fraction of hours by using TimeSpan.Hours property. It returns an int

Picture of a computer with code on the screen.


Here is a code snippet using this method to get the hour difference for training.

public int GetHourDifference(DateTime dateBefore, DateTime dateAfter)
  TimeSpan hourDifferenceSpan = dateAfter.Subtract(dateBefore);

  int hourDifference = hourDifferenceSpan.TotalHours;

  return hourDifference;

DateTime trainingBegin = DateTime.Today; // The training begins now
DateTime trainingEnd = DateTime.Today.AddHours(2);

Console.WriteLine("The training will last " + GerHourDifference(trainingBegin, trainingEnd) + " hours.");

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