elif (a.k.a. else-if) Statement

elif is the Python else-if statement. It allows one to check multiple expressions for truth value and execute a block of code as soon as one of the conditions evaluates to true. Like the else, the elif statement is optional. However, unlike else, for which there can be at most one statement, there can be an arbitrary number of elif statements following an if.


if expression1:
elif expression2:
elif expressionN:

At this time, Python does not currently support switch or case statements as in other languages. Python syntax does not present roadblocks to readability in the presence of a good number of if-elif statements.


if (user.cmd == 'create'):
    action = "create item"
    valid = 1
elif (user.cmd == 'delete'):
    action = 'delete item'
    valid = 1
elif (user.cmd == 'quit'):
    action = 'quit item'
    valid = 1
    action = "invalid choice… try again!"
    valid = 0

Python presents an elegant alternative to the switch/case statement in the for statement. Using for, one can “simulate” switches by cycling through each potential “case,” and take action when warranted.