w3docs logo

Best Practices for Python Variable Naming

At [Our Company Name], we take Python coding seriously. We believe that writing clear, concise, and readable code is essential for creating robust and maintainable applications. One of the key elements of Python coding is variable naming. In this article, we'll share our best practices for Python variable naming and show you how to make your code more readable and understandable.

Why is Variable Naming Important in Python?

Python is a high-level, dynamically-typed programming language that is known for its simplicity and readability. One of the ways that Python achieves this readability is by using meaningful and descriptive variable names. By using descriptive variable names, you can make your code more understandable, maintainable, and easier to debug.

When you write Python code, you are writing for two audiences: the computer and other developers. While the computer can read code with meaningless variable names, other developers may have a hard time understanding what the code does. By using descriptive variable names, you can make your code more accessible and easier to understand for other developers.

Best Practices for Python Variable Naming

Here are our best practices for naming variables in Python:

1. Use descriptive and meaningful names

Variable names should be descriptive and meaningful. They should describe what the variable represents or contains. For example, if you are writing a program that calculates the area of a circle, you might name your variable "radius" or "area". Avoid using generic or meaningless names such as "x" or "temp".

2. Follow a consistent naming convention

It's important to follow a consistent naming convention to make your code more readable and understandable. There are several naming conventions that you can follow, but the most common ones are:

  • CamelCase: This convention capitalizes the first letter of each word except for the first word. For example, "firstName" or "lastName".
  • snake_case: This convention uses underscores to separate words. For example, "first_name" or "last_name".

Choose a naming convention and stick to it throughout your code.

3. Avoid reserved keywords

Avoid using reserved keywords as variable names. Python has several reserved keywords that have special meanings in the language. Using reserved keywords as variable names can cause syntax errors and make your code hard to read. Some examples of reserved keywords are "if", "while", "for", and "print".

4. Don't use abbreviations

Avoid using abbreviations in your variable names. Abbreviations can be confusing and may not be understandable to other developers. Instead, use full and descriptive names.

5. Be mindful of variable scope

Be mindful of the scope of your variables. Variables should be defined in the smallest possible scope to avoid naming conflicts and improve readability. For example, if you have a function that uses a variable, define that variable inside the function instead of at the global level.

Examples of Good Variable Names in Python

Here are some examples of good variable names in Python:

# Example 1: Calculating the area of a circle
radius = 5
pi = 3.14
area = pi * radius ** 2

# Example 2: Storing a person's information
first_name = "John"
last_name = "Doe"
age = 30

In these examples, the variable names are descriptive, meaningful, and follow a consistent naming convention.


In this article, we have shared our best practices for Python variable naming. By using descriptive and meaningful variable names, following a consistent naming convention, avoiding reserved keywords and abbreviations, and being mindful of variable scope, you can make your Python code more readable, understandable, and maintain

Do you find this helpful?