How to fix the Invalid Timezone error in Magento

In: Feeling guru|Techie Daw

10 Apr 2014

I came across a persistent issue where the admin user is unable to save any configuration in the administration window and would only be greeted with the error below:

Invalid timezone error

Invalid timezone error showing in the System > Configuration window in Magento admin.

Upon investigation, I noticed that the method _beforeSave() is being called multiple times regardless if the field is for timezone or not as shown in the screenshot below:

Multiple fields being validated against the DateTimeZone::listIdentifiers($allWithBc) method.

Multiple fields being validated against the DateTimeZone::listIdentifiers($allWithBc) method.

The error occurs when the value of a non-timezone field is validated against the array result of the method DateTimeZone::listIdentifiers($allWithBc).

To fix this, duplicate the core file:


into this path (create the directory if it doesn’t exists)


Locate the method _beforeSave() and add the code below at the beginning:

if($this->getField() !== 'timezone')
    return $this;

The content of the method _beforeSave() should be similar to the one below (note this is for Magento CE so adjust accordingly with the code changes)

protected function _beforeSave()
    if($this->getField() !== 'timezone')
        return $this;

    $allWithBc = self::ALL_WITH_BC;
    if (defined('DateTimeZone::ALL_WITH_BC')) {
        $allWithBc = DateTimeZone::ALL_WITH_BC;

    if (!in_array($this->getValue(), DateTimeZone::listIdentifiers($allWithBc))) {
        Mage::throwException(Mage::helper('adminhtml')->__('Invalid timezone'));

    return $this;

After that, you should now be able to save your configuration changes in the admin.

About the author

Richard Feraro is a Magento Enterprise Certified developer from Manila, Philippines with 14 years of solid open-source development experience using Linux, Apache, MySQL & PHP.

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