8 Useful jQuery Snippets For URL’s & Querystrings

In any web project you will inevitably come across a situation where being able to extract information or use the current page URL would be useful. If server-side code is not available to help we can use javascript to get this information.

The following are examples of useful code snippets that can be used – some of the examples use standard javascript functions and are not specific to jQuery:

1. Get The Current Page URL

A very simple snippet, which stores the current page URL in a variable:

// Retrieve current URL
var url = document.URL;

2. Get The Current Root URL

A very simple snippet, which stores the root URL in a variable:

// Retrieve root URL
var root = location.protocol + '//' +;

3. Get A URL Hash Parameter

Retrive a hash parameter and store in a variable:

// Get # parameter
var param = document.URL.split('#')[1];

4. Change Browser Address Bar Hash Parameter

In the example below we replace the hash parameter, which we get from the clicked link. Useful for adding bookmarking capabilities when using AJAX:

// update browser address bar URL
	var hash = $(this).attr('href');
	location.hash = hash;

5. Redirect Using Javascript

If you need to redirect a page using jQuery:

// Redirect - insert required URL
window.location.href = "";

6. Get Querystring Parameters

If the URL contains a querystring with multiple parameters the following snippet will parse each parameter and store the array as a variable:

var vars = [], hash;
	var q = document.URL.split('?')[1];
	if(q != undefined){
		q = q.split('&');
		for(var i = 0; i < q.length; i++){
			hash = q[i].split('=');
			vars[hash[0]] = hash[1];

To use any of the parameters you can access the value using the parameter name. E.g. if the URL contains the querystring “?a=3&b=2&c=1″ you can access the value for “a” using:

// Will alert the value of parameter a

7. Highlight Current Menu Item

Rather than manually modify navigation menus to add an “active” class to the current page we can use jQuery to identify which link contains the current URL:

var url = document.URL;
$('#menu a[href="'+url+'"]').addClass('active');

8. Check If Link Contains External URL

The following snippet will check if a clicked link contains a URL to an external web page and if so, open in a new browser window:

var root = location.protocol + '//' +;
$('a').not(':contains(root)').click(function(){ = "_blank";

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