# How to Return Multiple Values From a Function in Python

Manav Narula Feb 02, 2024

Functions are an essential part of any programming language. A function is a block of code that can be called to perform a specific operation in programming. Usually, a function is used to return a value. This value can be a number, a string, or any other datatype.

In this tutorial, we will discuss different methods to create a function that returns multiple values. We will return different data objects like a list, a dictionary, and other objects from a user-defined function to achieve this.

## Use a Tuple to Return Multiple Values From a Function in Python

If we return values from a function separated by a comma, they are considered a tuple. Tuples are usually enclosed in parenthesis. In the code below, we will return a tuple from a Python function.

``````def return_multi(a):
b = a + 1
c = a + 2
return b, c

x = return_multi(5)
print(x, type(x))
``````

Output:

``````(6, 7) <class 'tuple'>
``````

## Use a List to Return Multiple Values From a Function in Python

Python lists are used to store different items under a common name and at specific positions. Functions can also return multiple values in a list, as shown below.

``````def return_multi(a):
b = a + 1
c = a + 2
return [b, c]

x = return_multi(5)
print(x, type(x))
``````

Output:

``````[6, 7] <class 'list'>
``````

## Use a Dictionary to Return Multiple Values From a Function in Python

Dictionaries are used to store key-value pairs in Python. We can have the final output in a much more organized format by returning a dictionary from a function with keys assigned to different values. See the following example.

``````def return_multi(a):
b = a + 1
c = a + 2
return {"b": b, "c": c}

x = return_multi(5)
print(x, type(x))
``````

Output:

``````{'b': 6, 'c': 7} <class 'dict'>
``````

## Use a Class to Return Multiple Values From a Function in Python

Classes contain different data members and functions and allow us to create objects to access these members. We can return an object of such user-defined classes based on the class structure and its data members. For example:

``````class return_values:
def __init__(self, a, b):
self.a = a
self.b = b

def return_multi(a):
b = a + 1
c = a + 2
t = return_values(b, c)
return t

x = return_multi(5)
print(x.a, x.b, type(x))
``````

Output:

``````6 7 <class '__main__.return_values'>
``````

## Use a `dataclass` to Return Multiple Values From a Function in Python

A `dataclass` is a new interesting feature added in Python v3.7 and up. They are similar to traditional classes but mainly used to store data and all their basic functionalities are already implemented. The `@dataclass` decorator and the `dataclass` module are used to create such objects. In the code below, we return a `dataclass` from a function.

``````from dataclasses import dataclass

@dataclass
class return_values:
a: int
b: int

def return_multi(a):
b = a + 1
c = a + 2
t = return_values(b, c)
return t

x = return_multi(5)
print(x.a, x.b, type(x))
``````

Output:

``````6 7 <class '__main__.return_values'>
``````
Author: Manav Narula

Manav is a IT Professional who has a lot of experience as a core developer in many live projects. He is an avid learner who enjoys learning new things and sharing his findings whenever possible.