The Only 2 States That Don’t Observe Daylight Saving Time

For most of the U.S., the second Sunday of March marks the start of daylight saving time, but two states are the exceptions. Here's why.

This year, daylight saving time begins on Sunday, March 12 and ends on Sunday, Nov. 5. During daylight saving time, Americans around the country wake up a little more groggy and a lot more annoyed than usual, knowing that they’ve lost an hour of sleep. Some even ask, “what would happen if we had no more daylight savings?” as they adjust to the time change. But for a select group of Americans, the second Sunday of March is just a regular day, as not all states observe daylight saving time.

What states don’t do daylight saving time?

Two states don’t do daylight saving time: Hawaii and Arizona. The United States officially adopted daylight saving time (yes, not “savings”) as part of the Uniform Time Act of 1966. Before that, states could come up with their own versions of the practice. In fact, Iowa once had 23 different pairs of start and end dates throughout the state. This new law brought much-needed order to the country’s clocks, but it didn’t require all states to comply. And so, Hawaii and Arizona eventually opted out.

Why did Hawaii and Arizona opt out of daylight saving time?

Hawaii abandoned the law in 1967 because, well, it just didn’t make sense. One of the benefits of daylight saving time is that there’s more daylight in the evening. But in Hawaii, the sun rises and sets at about the same time every day, TIME reports.

Arizona followed suit in 1968 because it also gets a lot of daylight year-round. Not setting clocks forward also ensures that there are lower temperatures during waking and bedtime hours. However, the Navajo Nation in northeastern Arizona does observe daylight saving time so it can have a uniform time with parts of Navajo territory in Utah and New Mexico. A few U.S. territories also refrain from observing daylight saving time: the commonwealths of Puerto Rico and the Northern Marina Islands, the U.S. Virgin Islands, American Samoa and Guam.

Some states have drafted bills to adopt daylight saving time year-round or end the practice altogether—and in early March 2023, Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida reintroduced the Sunshine Protection Act, which, if signed into law, would make daylight saving time permanent in the U.S. That would mean no more swapping those clocks back-and-forth twice a year. The bill was passed in the Senate in 2022, but the House didn’t vote on it.

So, for now, most of the country still has to change its clocks twice a year. And yes, you have every right to be annoyed when March rolls around, but getting your body used to the time change doesn’t have to be a struggle.