Michigan Time Zone

Michigan Time Zone was never in the Eastern Time Zone. It was always in the Central Time Zone (CST). Daylight Savings Time (DST) was the most significant adjustment, as CST is only one hour behind EST. As we now know, not every state observes DST, so the time difference between states fluctuates at various times of the year.

Michigan did not always observe DST, as they were in the same time zone as Chicago; however, many merchants determined that this was not suitable for them. Since they were not in the same time zone as New York and did not have as much daylight as they did, they felt an hour behind. Everything began in Detroit before neighboring communities such as Ann Arbor and Flint joined in. The entire state eventually followed suit, bringing us to the present.

History of Michigan Time Zone

The history of time zones in Michigan, particularly its Upper Peninsula (U.P.), reflects a complex blend of geography, economics, and politics. The state of Michigan is primarily located in the Eastern Time Zone (ET), but parts of it, especially in the U.P., have experienced changes between the Central Time Zone (CT) and Eastern Time Zone over the years. Here’s a brief overview of the time zone history in Michigan:

Standard Time Adoption: Standard time zones were adopted in the United States in 1883 to resolve the confusion caused by each city having its own local time. This move was essential for scheduling trains and improving communication across long distances.

Eastern and Central Time Zones: Michigan is geographically situated, so the Lower Peninsula is a clear fit for the Eastern Time Zone. At the same time, the Western U.P. aligns more closely with the Central Time Zone. The Eastern Time Zone was chosen for the entire state initially, for uniformity and to align economically and socially with the eastern cities like Detroit and New York.

Changes and Controversies: Over the years, there have been several changes and debates regarding the time zone in the U.P. Some western counties in the U.P. have fluctuated between Central and Eastern Time Zones, primarily influenced by their economic and social ties with Wisconsin (in the Central Time Zone) and the rest of Michigan (in the Eastern Time Zone).

Legislation and Referendums: The Uniform Time Act of 1966 brought more structure to the time zone assignments, but left room for changes if local communities showed a preference through referendums. This led to certain areas in the U.P. voting to change their time zone from Eastern to Central or vice versa, reflecting local preferences and interests.

Current Status: As of my last update, most of Michigan, including all of the Lower Peninsula and the majority of the Upper Peninsula, observes Eastern Time. However, a few counties in the western part of the U.P. observe Central Time, due to their economic and cultural ties with neighboring Wisconsin.

What Time Zone in Michigan?

Michigan primarily observes the Eastern Time Zone (ET). However, a few counties in the western part of the Upper Peninsula (U.P.) observe the Central Time Zone (CT). These counties are exceptions due to their geographical location and economic ties with neighboring Wisconsin, which is in the Central Time Zone. The division into two time zones allows for alignment with the economic and social activities of the respective regions.

To summarize:

Eastern Time Zone (ET): Most of Michigan, including all of the Lower Peninsula and the majority of the Upper Peninsula, observes Eastern Time.

Central Time Zone (CT): A few counties in the western part of the U.P. observe Central Time, reflecting their closer ties to Wisconsin.

This setup ensures that the time zone aligns with the practical and economic realities of different parts of the state.

Michigan Time Zone Information




Time Zone

Eastern Time Zone


Eastern Daylight Time (EDT)

DST Changes

Daylight Saving Time is currently being observed in Troy, Michigan.

Date DST Started

12 March 2024 Clocks are turned forward 1 hour.
Date DST Ends

05 November 2024

Clocks are turned backward for 1 hour.


42° 34′ North


83° 08′ West

Area Code


Eastern Time Zone in The United States

The Eastern Standard Time zone includes the portion of the United States that lies west of 67(degrees) 30(seconds) West longitude and east of the boundary line described in Section 71.5, as well as the entirety of the state of Maine, but excludes Puerto Rico.

The Eastern Time Zone encompasses Connecticut, Delaware, a portion of Florida, Georgia, a portion of Indiana, a portion of Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, a portion of Michigan, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, a portion of Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia, and West Virginia.

Five states span the eastern and central time zones. These five states are Florida, Indiana, Kentucky, and Michigan.

Central Time Zone in The United States

Moving Michigan and Indiana to Central Time is advantageous for farmers and others dependent on daylight because it is closer to astronomical time. The sun would be directly overhead closer to noon than it is now for these two Eastern Time Zone states at 1:00 p.m. Early risers would have more daylight hours, while early sleepers would find it simpler to fall asleep due to the earlier (by the clock) sunset.

When phoning home or the office from Chicago, tourists would not need to adjust their clocks or perform time zone gymnastics. People in Michigan, Wisconsin, Indiana, and Illinois would no longer be affected by distinct clock times. People in California would be that much closer to our time zone, giving us an additional hour of overlap to conduct business.

Daylight Savings Time (DST) in Michigan

Michigan observes daylight saving time, as specified by the Uniform Time Act of 1966. Standard time changes to Daylight time during daylight savings, so CST becomes CDT and EST becomes EDT depending on the location.

It begins the second Sunday of March and concludes the first Sunday of November. In March, the clock is advanced from 2:00 am to 3:00 am, resulting in a loss of one hour of slumber. In November, the time will be set back an hour, from 3:00 a.m. to 2:00 a.m., giving you an extra hour of sleep. Clocks “spring forward and fall back” is a convenient method to remember the movement sequence.

The total duration of daylight savings is 34 weeks or approximately 65 percent of the year.

Benefits of Permanent Daylight Saving Time

Proponents of a permanent transition to daylight saving argue that more sunlight is beneficial for the body, the mind, and the economy. People are reportedly more active later in the day if there is more afternoon sunlight. As darkness falls later in the day, businesses benefit from an increase in consumers and a decrease in robberies and crime, according to some studies.

A CBS poll conducted last year found that 46 percent of Americans favor a permanent switch to daylight saving time, and 19 states (excluding Michigan) have enacted bills or resolutions to make DST permanent if Congress allows it.

Schedule a Phone Call from Michigan to Pennsylvania

Since Michigan (MI) and Pennsylvania (PA) have equivalent time zones, you can call someone during your regular hours and it will be the same time in both states. When scheduling a contact, remember to account for any time changes due to Daylight Savings Time.

If you reside in Michigan and wish to contact a friend in Pennsylvania, you may do so between 7:00 AM and 11:00 PM your time. This will occur between 7 AM and 11 PM their time, as Pennsylvania and Michigan share the same time zone.

If you’re available at any time but want to contact someone at work in Pennsylvania, you might try between 9:00 AM and 5:00 PM your time. The ideal time to contact them is between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., during normal business hours.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Does Michigan have 2 time zones?

Only four counties bordering Wisconsin in the southern portion of the Upper Peninsula observe Central Time (Gogebic, Iron, Dickinson, and Menominee). The western one-third of Nebraska is located in the Mountain Time zone. While the eastern two-thirds are in the Central Time zone.

What do I choose for the time zone for Michigan?

When selecting a time zone, Michigan is not listed; therefore, which time zone is most closely associated with Michigan?

Is Michigan in EST or CST?

Only four counties bordering Wisconsin in the southern portion of the Upper Peninsula observe Central Time (Gogebic, Iron, Dickinson, and Menominee).

Is Michigan in GMT?

The majority of Michigan is located in the Eastern Time Zone. Greenwich Mean Time is five hours behind Eastern Standard Time (EST). Four counties in the western Upper Peninsula of Michigan (Gogebic, Iron, Dickinson, and Menominee) that border Wisconsin on the south are in the Central Time Zone.

Why is Michigan in two time zones?

Wisconsin, which is in the Central Time Zone, shares borders with Dickinson, Gogebic, Iron, and Menominee counties. Consequently, these four Michigan counties chose to be in this time zone an hour earlier in order to remain in sync with their Wisconsin counterparts.

Is Michigan Standard Time?

With the exception of four counties and two localities, the entire state of Michigan observes Eastern Time.

Is Michigan time the same as New York?

The state of Michigan has two time zones. The time zone for Lansing, the state capital, is used here. Michigan and New York share the same time zone.

Is Michigan time the same as Toronto?

Because Michigan (MI) and Toronto, Ontario share the same time zone. You can call someone during your regular business hours. It will be the same time in Toronto, Canada as it is in Michigan.

Does Michigan change the time?

Sunday, March 12 ushers in Daylight Saving Time. Michigan is one of 48 states participating, despite numerous legislative attempts to terminate the practice. So Michiganders will have to advance their clocks that weekend.

What is full-time in Michigan?

According to the ACA (PDF), a full-time employee is reasonably expected to work at least 30 hours per week. Employers must provide health insurance to these employees.

How many hours can you work in Michigan?

There are no minimum or maximum hours required. The employer may request your presence or send you home when work is sluggish and you are not required.

How many time zones are there in the US?

With the Fall 2019 release of the National Transportation Atlas Database (NTAD). A new map of the nation’s time zones is included, depicting the geographical boundaries of four time zones in the continental United States. And five additional time zones were used in Alaska, Hawaii, and other U.S. territories.