Pluralizing I18n Translations in Your Rails Application

Jessie Young

Say we have some I18n text that tells users how many notifications they have. One option for dealing with a singular vs plural situation would look like this:

# config/locales/en.yml

  single_notification: You have 1 notification
  other_notification_count: You have %{count} notifications
<%# app/views/notifications/index.html.erb %>

<% if current_user.notifications.count == 1 %>
  <%= t("single_notification") %>
<% else %>
  <%= t("other_notification_count", count: current_user.notifications.count) %>
<% end %>

Kind of ugly, right? Luckily, Rails provides a simple way to deal with pluralization in translations. Let’s try it out:

# config/locales/en.yml

    one: You have 1 notification
    other: You have %{count} notifications
<%# app/views/notifications/index.html.erb %>

<%= t("notification", count: current_user.notifications.count) %>

Same result, and no conditionals in our views. Awesome.