How do I handle errors and timeouts when scraping Zoopla?

Handling errors and timeouts is an essential aspect of creating a reliable web scraping script for any website, including Zoopla. Zoopla, like many other websites, may have measures in place to detect and block scrapers, so it's important to be respectful and cautious with your scraping activities. Here are some general strategies to handle errors and timeouts:

1. Use Exception Handling:

In Python, you can use try-except blocks to handle exceptions that may occur during the scraping process. For instance, you can catch timeouts and HTTP errors.

import requests
from requests.exceptions import Timeout, HTTPError

    response = requests.get('', timeout=5)
    response.raise_for_status()  # This will raise an HTTPError if the HTTP request returned an unsuccessful status code
except Timeout:
    print("The request timed out")
except HTTPError as e:
    print(f"HTTP error occurred: {e}")  # Print the HTTP status code
except Exception as e:
    print(f"An error occurred: {e}")

2. Retrying After a Timeout or Error:

You might want to implement a retry mechanism, which attempts the request again after a certain delay if it fails the first time.

import time

max_retries = 5
retry_delay = 10  # seconds

for attempt in range(max_retries):
        response = requests.get('', timeout=5)
        break  # If the request was successful, exit the loop
    except (Timeout, HTTPError):
        print(f"Attempt {attempt+1} failed. Retrying in {retry_delay} seconds...")
    except Exception as e:
        print(f"An error occurred: {e}")
        break  # For non-retriable errors, exit the loop

3. Set User-Agent and Headers:

Sometimes a request might be blocked because the server identifies it as coming from a scraper. Setting a user-agent and other headers can help to mimic a regular browser request.

headers = {
    'User-Agent': 'Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; Win64; x64) AppleWebKit/537.36 (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/58.0.3029.110 Safari/537.3'

response = requests.get('', headers=headers, timeout=5)

4. Use Proxies:

If your IP gets blocked, you might need to use proxies to continue scraping.

proxies = {
    'http': '',
    'https': '',

response = requests.get('', headers=headers, proxies=proxies, timeout=5)

5. Respect robots.txt:

Always check the robots.txt file of the website (e.g., to ensure that you are allowed to scrape the pages you're interested in.

JavaScript (Node.js) Example:

Handling errors in Node.js can be done using try-catch blocks as well as using libraries like axios which return promises.

const axios = require('axios').default;

async function fetchZoopla() {
  try {
    const response = await axios.get('', { timeout: 5000 });
  } catch (error) {
    if (error.code === 'ECONNABORTED') {
      console.log('The request timed out');
    } else if (error.response) {
      console.log(`HTTP error occurred: ${error.response.status}`);
    } else {
      console.log(`An error occurred: ${error.message}`);


In both Python and JavaScript, handling errors and timeouts is crucial for effective web scraping. Remember to always follow the website's terms of service and legal guidelines when scraping to avoid legal issues and to scrape responsibly.

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