I just uploaded some templates to the server and discovered that some of my url encoded strings are being output with a "+" for spaces instead of the "%20" that is desired. It is fine in my local environment. Any ideas?

According to the twig encode_url documentation url_encode now uses php's rawurlencode by default:

Internally, Twig uses the PHP urlencode (or rawurlencode if you pass true as the first parameter) or the http_build_query function. Note that as of Twig 1.16.0, urlencode always uses rawurlencode (the raw argument was removed.)

I have also tried passing 'true' as the first parameter just in case. No luck.

  • What PHP versions are on the server and locally?
    – Brad Bell
    Commented Nov 12, 2014 at 21:11
  • @Brad local 5.5.14; server 5.3.5 Commented Nov 12, 2014 at 21:26
  • Was thinking maybe it's a PHP change in behavior/bug fix, but not seeing anything here php.net/ChangeLog-5.php
    – Brad Bell
    Commented Nov 12, 2014 at 21:29
  • If you test url_encode() directly from a PHP script with the same string, do you see the same behavior?
    – Brad Bell
    Commented Nov 13, 2014 at 1:15
  • @BradBell Sorry, I'm not sure how to call url_encode() from php. Is there a craft helper function available? Or do you mean php's urlencode() and rawurlencode()? Both of those act as expected on both the server and local. urlencode returns '+' and rawurlencode returns '%20'. Commented Nov 13, 2014 at 1:48

1 Answer 1


It looks like the twig url_encode filter uses the php function http_build_query if parameters are passed to it as an array. i.e. {'key':'value', 'key':'value'}|url_encode. Otherwise it uses rawurlencode.

http_build_query was modified in php 5.4 to include a new property enc_type, that allowed you to specify that it use PHP_QUERY_RFC3986encoding (which is also what rawurlencode uses).

The url_encode filter is defined in craft/app/vendor/twig/twig/lib/Twig/Extension/Core.php on line 596, and contains a clause to make it backwards compatible with php 5.3, but you obviously will loose the encoding type.

Options are: upgrade php to 5.4+; do not pass params as an array to the url_encode filter; or do a string replace on the encoded string.

  • I was just going to say that! ;)
    – Brad Bell
    Commented Nov 13, 2014 at 15:58

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