Why use Python requests?

Feb 20, 2024 ยท 2 min read

The Requests library is a crucial tool for any Python developer working with HTTP requests and APIs. Its simplicity and elegance have made it the most popular way to make HTTP calls in Python.

Why Use Requests?

Requests takes away the pain of tasks like:

  • Formatting query strings
  • Encoding data for POST requests
  • Handling cookies
  • Managing headers
  • Parsing responses
  • With just a few lines of code, you can:

    import requests
    response = requests.get('https://api.example.com/data')

    This saves tons of time compared to using Python's built-in urllib module which requires more code and effort.

    Requests also provides useful features like:

  • Automatic JSON decoding
  • Timeout handling
  • Connection pooling
  • Browser-style SSL verification
  • Making a POST request with data and headers is just as simple:

    data = {'key': 'value'}
    headers = {'User-Agent': 'My Script'}
    response = requests.post('https://api.example.com/submit', data=data, headers=headers)

    No need to encode the data manually or manage SSL certificate verification!

    When Should You Use Requests?

    Nearly any time you need to call a web API or scrape a website, Requests should be your first choice:

  • APIs like Twitter, GitHub, Stripe, etc.
  • Web scraping sites that don't block automation
  • Testing webhooks or other HTTP services
  • Downloading files from the internet
  • Requests is battle-tested and used by many large companies. It has great community support as well.

    Get Started with Requests

    Hopefully this gives you a taste of why Requests makes HTTP in Python so much easier. Check out the quick start guide to start making requests right away!

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