Weather APIs are used in a wide range of applications such as online news outlets providing local weather reports, travel websites showing an overview of the current conditions in each destination country, home automation systems monitoring temperature trends for more efficient energy use, and smartphone apps helping people plan their outdoor activities according to the most recent forecast. Check out more scenarios for using a weather API.
Most weather APIs offer a comprehensive set of features allowing developers to customize their application’s behavior based on user preferences or past usage patterns. This makes it easier for them to launch timely updates when needed while also offering great flexibility when building innovative ways to interact with the weather data collected by the API service provider.
Weather APIs also provide other useful benefits such as improved accuracy due to ongoing quality assurance processes, easy integration with popular development environments, scalability, reliability, detailed documentation, and last but certainly not least – affordability thanks to generous free plans offered by some providers.
This blog post highlights several of the most popular FREE weather APIs on the Rapid API Hub developers use to build innovative web and mobile weather applications. Keep in mind, not all weather data feeds are created equal – some are more accurate than others and some offer more details. Find the right API that meets your needs on this list!
Before we reveal our top 6 best free weather APIs for 2023, let’s address some questions you might have on weather APIs:
What is a weather API?
Weather APIs, or Application Programming Interfaces, are services that provide real-time access to weather data and forecasts. These APIs enable developers to build applications for their users that can access the latest weather information from a variety of sources. With the help of Weather APIs, developers can access current conditions, hourly and daily forecasts as well as long-term outlooks with just a few lines of code. This allows them to create feature-rich apps that provide up-to-date information on temperature, precipitation, wind speed and direction as well as other important weather variables.
How to get an API Key?
When connecting an API to a project or application, you must have an API key to authenticate your request. Creating an app within RapidAPI generates an API key (X-RapidAPI-Key) specific to that application. You can view analytics based on the API calls you make using this app key. RapidAPI is free to join and get started. Sign up for free today!
What is the best free weather API?
Here are the top 6 best free weather APIs for 2023:
Popularity Score: 9.9/10
WeatherAPI.com is a powerful fully managed weather and geolocation API provider that provides extensive APIs that range from the real time and weather forecast, historical weather, Air Quality Data, Bulk Request, IP lookup, and astronomy through to sports, time zone, and geolocation.
WeatherAPI.com provides current and 14 day weather data, future weather, historical weather and geo data via. REST API in JSON format.
WeatherAPI will also provide time zone information, astronomy data and geo location data.
The weather data is provided in partnership with several data providers, government and meteorological agencies.
Popularity Score: 9.9/10
For the past 15 years, ForecastAPI has been collecting and analyzing weather data from their own meteorological unit, to provide the most accurate forecast possible for any given location in the world. With this API you can enrich and improve your website or trigger any event based on high accurate weather forecast
This API provides weather forecasts worldwide: for a given location (latitude/longitude), you can get weather forecasts on daily (free) or hourly level for the next 16 days and weather stations historical data up to 1 year
Popularity Score: 9.8/10
The Meteostat JSON API is a web service that provides weather observations, historical statistics and long-term climate data for thousands of weather stations and places worldwide.
Meteostat is one of the largest vendors of open weather and climate data. Access long-term time series of thousands of weather stations and integrate Meteostat data into your products, applications and workflows.
The Meteostat JSON API provides simple access to a large archive of historical weather and climate data. The records are queried by weather station or geo location and can be filtered by specifying a date range and other optional parameters.
4. Weather Embed
Popularity Score: 9.7/10
Weather Embed is a super simple URL based API that offers a PNG image for embedding. Use cases include hotel newsletters showing check-in weather, or sharing current weather in a Slack Bot
5. Weather by API – Ninjas
Popularity Score: 9.9/10
The API Ninjas Weather API provides the latest weather information for any city or geographic location in the world. Get current weather data by city, ZIP code, or geolocation coordinates (latitude/longitude).
6. Visual Crossing Weather
Popularity Score: 9.8/10
The Visual Crossing Weather API provides high-performance, low-cost, instant access to both historical weather records and weather forecast data. Available weather metrics include temperature, rainfall, wind speed (including gusts), snow, perceived temperature, humidity, and pressure. Weather history data is available for hourly and daily levels and global forecasts for hourly, daily, and 12-hour (day/night) periods. Every API call allows multiple locations in each request to maximize efficiency and minimize your cost. The API is suitable for occasional use to enterprise public deployments.
Which Weather API is the Best One for Your App?
While much of the weather data provided by these APIs are similar, there are differences in the days and time formats for weather forecasts, the number of years back for historical data, and the types of weather information provided.
While the weather APIs listed in this article have many capabilities, it might be worth combining or chaining these API requests with related geolocation APIs to get more accurate local weather conditions in your website and/or app.
Free Weather APIs
All of the weather APIs highlighted in this post have a free or limited free plan (freemium) available, providing an opportunity to try them out to see which is the best for your application.
How to use Weather APIs
Then navigate to any of the APIs and test out the endpoints in the programming language of your preference.
Weather API SDKs
All weather APIs on the Rapid API Hub are available in:
- Java (Android)
- C# (.NET)
and produce JSON (and sometimes XML) responses. Learn more about RapidAPI SDKs.
For getting started, check out this quick guide.
How to use Weather APIs in a website
There are multiple possibilities on how to integrate weather API data into your website.
A couple of examples include:
- showing the current weather for a specific region
- showing the weather forecast for a specific region
- create charts based on different weather metadata
The possibilities are endless!
Are there any Weather APIs that provide UV Index?
For APIs that provide UV Index, check out OpenUV.
The OpenUV API provides UV index data in real time (even hourly). This API requires an API key from the provider. The UV Index provides a 14 day UV index forecast from cities all over the world, and is free up to 20 requests/month and then costs $0.04 per additional request.
How do I find my AccuWeather API key?
- Click “My Apps” in the main menu.
- Click the “Add a new App” button.
- Enter the required information and click the “Create App” button.
- The new App will be active immediately. Click on the App name to view your API Key and details about your App.
- Copy your API Key and paste it in the “API Key” section of the RapidAPI AccuWeather API Page.
- Click “Test Endpoint” to test the endpoints right in your browser!
Steps to use a weather API:
1. Find a weather API
First, you’ll need to pick an API. There are many weather APIs listed in this article that you could try.
2. Sign up for a free RapidAPI account
After you’ve found the weather API that you’d like to integrate with, sign up for a free RapidAPI account.
3. Subscribe to a plan
Once you have an account, navigate to the API page of the weather API and subscribe to one of the API’s pricing plans. Hint: There’s usually a free tier that allows for a few API calls.
4. Test the endpoints
After subscribing, choose one of the API endpoints, enter all the required parameters, and test the API right in the browser to make sure it’s working correctly.
5. Copy the code snippet
Finally, choose the coding language of your preference, and click Copy Code Snippet. Drop the code snippet directly in your website or app, and voila! You’ve successfully integrated with a weather API.
Weather Data Feeds
Weather by Zip Code / Location
These API’s retrieve weather information by location; IP, zipcode or latitude and longitude coordinates.
Weather by Latitude and Longitude
Weather by City
Weather by Hourly Forecast
Let’s hear from you
What do you think is the best weather API? Which APIs are we missing? When you search weather APIs, what do you expect to see? Which weather company would you like an API for? Let us know in the comments below!