In this short guide, we're going to merge multiple CSV files into a single CSV file with Python. We will also see how to read multiple CSV files - by wildcard matching - to a single DataFrame.

The code to merge several CSV files matched by pattern to a file or Pandas DataFrame is:

import glob
for f in glob.glob('file_*.csv'):
    df_temp = pd.read_csv(f)


Suppose we have multiple CSV files like:

  • file_202201.csv
  • file_202202.csv
  • file_202203.csv

into single CSV file like: merged.csv

1: Merge CSV files to DataFrame

To merge multiple CSV files to a DataFrame we will use the Python module - glob. The module allow us to search for a file pattern with wildcard - *.

import pandas as pd
import glob

df_files = []
for f in glob.glob('file_*.csv'):
    df_temp = pd.read_csv(f)
df = pd.concat(df_files)

How does the code work?

  • All files which match the pattern will be iterated in random order
  • Temporary DataFrame is created for each file
  • The temporary DataFrame is appended to list
  • Finally all DataFrames are merged into a single one

2: Read CSV files without header

To skip the headers for the CSV files we can use parameter: header=None

read_csv('file_*.csv', header=None)

To add the headers only for the first file we can:

  • read the first file with headers
  • drop duplicates (keep first)
  • set column names

All depends on the context.

3: Read sorted CSV files

Module glob reads files without order. To ensure the correct order of the read CSV files we can use sorted:


This ensures that the final output CSV file or DataFrame will be loaded in a certain order.

Alternatively we can use parameters: ignore_index=True, , sort=True for Pandas method concat:

merged_df = pd.concat(all_df, ignore_index=True, sort=True)

4: Change CSV separator

We can control what is the separator symbol for the CSV files by using parameter:

sep = '\t'

Default one is comma.

5: Keep trace of CSV files

If we like to keep trace of each row loaded - from which CSV file is coming we can use: df_temp['file'] = f.split('/')[-1]:

This will data a new column to each file with trace - the file name origin.

6: Merge CSV files to single with Python

Finally we can save the result into a single CSV file from Pandas Dataframe by:


7. Full Code

Finally we can find the full example with most options mentioned earlier:

import pandas as pd
import glob

df_files = []
for f in sorted(glob.glob('file_*.txt')):
    df_temp = pd.read_csv(f, header=None, index_col=False, sep='\t')
    df_temp['file'] = f.split('/')[-1]
df_merged = pd.concat(df_files)


We saw how to read multiple CSV files with Pandas and Python. Different options were covered like:

  • changing separator for read_csv
  • keeping trace of the source file
  • sorting files in certain order
  • skipping headers