Patrick de Vos Patrick de Vos - 29 days ago 3x
PHP Question

php only allow letters but doesnt work on @, - etc

I've added a form to my website to subscribe to my newsletter.
The problem is, I use the

tag for email address but it doesn't allow @ or #.

$first_name = $_POST['first_name']; // required
$email_address = $_POST['email_address']; // required

$error_message = "";
$email_exp = '/^[A-Za-z0-9._%-]+@[A-Za-z0-9.-]+\.[A-Za-z]{2,4}$/';

$string_exp = "/^[A-Za-z .'-]+$/";

if(!preg_match($string_exp,$first_name)) {
$error_message .= 'The First Name you entered does not appear to be valid.<br />';

Also I want the
email address
allow to use keys as @ or #.


Your regex for first_name is

$string_exp = "/^[A-Za-z .'-]+$/";

Which restricts you to only latin characters, space, period, single quote and dash.

If you wanted to allow @ and # then you should add these as extra characters to the allowable character list:

$string_exp = "/^[A-Za-z .'@#-]+$/";

Important: you must to add these before the last - or the - will be interpreted as specifying a character range.

A better question though is why are you restricting the user's name at all? If someone has a non-ANSI character in their name (eg russian, chinese, japanese, korean or even accented latin characters) then you will prevent them from signing up. A user's name should really have no restrictions at all, and if you have issues with other characters then there is a bug in the code that generates any emails.

Repeat this for the email allowable character lists (remembering to put them before any - at the end)

A final comment: Your regex for email addresses has much bigger problems than these characters. Most obviously it will prevent legitimate GTLDs that are longer than 4 characters at the end from working (eg .museum), or the + symbol before the @ (very useful with gmail addresses).

A fully compliant regular expression for parsing email addresses is extremely complicated (see I generally use the regex specified in the HTML5 spec ( since this will be the one the browser also uses for <input type="email"> but there are many alternatives (see Using a regular expression to validate an email address)

Email regex in html5 spec: