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TypeError: Argument of Type ‘int’ is not Iterable

So you’re getting the TypeError: argument of type ‘int’ is not iterable error message. I came across this issue when calling an api, extracting some data from a json object, and trying to determine if I needed to do something with that info.

Bite Size Soln for Those in a Rush

In short, you’re trying to find whether a substring exists in an integer. Make sure to cast your ints to strings and you should be able to continue on your way. Now, if you’d like a more detailed explanation, continue on.

My Setup

Python 3.x
macOS

The Issue

You are inadvertently trying to determine if a substring is in an integer! Let’s recreate it in a line or two.

word = 'stuff'
blur = 12344566
word in blur

You should be greeted with the ugly, “TypeError: argument of type ‘int’ is not iterable” message.

The Solution

Cast, Cast, Cast.

word = 'stuff'
blur = 12344566
word in str(blur)

A More Realistic Example

This will output false successfully telling you whether stuff can be found within the now string ‘12344566’. And now for a more realistic example.

array = ['Foo','Bar', 1]
for element in array:
    print(element)
    if 'sandwich' in element:
        print('Found the sandwich') 

Here we can see all elements of the array are printed because the error occurs on the third element. One will never find a string in an int. You can avoid checking types and error handling by wrapping element in str() to cast it as a string in case we come across any unruly data types.

array = ['Foo','Bar', 1]
for element in array:
    print(element)
    if 'sandwich' in str(element):
        print('Found the sandwich') 

The problem is gone. We also never find the sandwich. Happy coding!

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