HTML text input - allow only numeric input

Matthew C.

The Problem

You have an input element, you want to restrict the input to numeric input only. How do you do this?

The Solution

You can set the type attribute of the input element to “number”. The input element will not allow non-numerical inputs to be added and it has built-in validation.

An input with a type of “number” has extra attributes including min, max, and step. You can set the minimum and maximum values for the input using min and max.

You can restrict the input further by setting the step attribute, which determines how the value increases or decreases when a user clicks the browser-provided stepper arrows of the input:

<input type="number" value="4.4" min="2.2" max="11" step="2.2" />

You can set a default value using the value attribute.

You may notice that you can type the letter “e” into an input with a type of “number”. This is because the number input can accept floating-point numbers.

Note that you should only use an input with a type of “number” for incremental numbers. Don’t use it for inputs for phone numbers or credit cards, for example. For phone numbers, you can use <input type="tel">:

<input type="tel" id="phone" name="phone" pattern="[0-9]{3}-[0-9]{3}-[0-9]{4}" required />

For other non-incremental number inputs, use an input type of “text” and use the inputmode attribute set to “numeric”. The inputmode attribute indicates to the browser the type of virtual keyboard to use when editing the input on a mobile device. You can restrict text input to number characters using a regular expression in the pattern attribute. The below code shows a basic input for a credit card number:

<input type="text" inputmode="numeric" pattern="[0-9\s]{13,19}" autocomplete="cc-number" maxlength="19" placeholder="xxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx" />

For real-world use of credit card input, you’ll need JavaScript for better validation. For example, checking if a credit card number is valid using Luhn’s algorithm and using a regular expression to check that the pattern of the input matches the possible prefixes and lengths of the allowed credit cards. You can also use a JavaScript library such as Credit Card Validator for validation.

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