My question has a couple of aspects:

My current custom theme is fairly vanilla, with a homepage, tag/tax index page and content page templates.

I want to be able to have a couple of custom layout templates for tag pages, so rather than the template hierarchy simply loading the template php, I want to:

  • check to see if this tag id/ slug has a custom layout
  • if it does, load it, with its custom layout elements
  • if not, load the default template

My site is quite high traffic so I'm looking for a solution that doesn't have a huge performance overhead. Ideally at the point of determining if we're loading something custom, I want to know if Wordpress makes available the tag/tax ID or slug so I can do a nice quick lookup on my custom table.

  • 1
    template_include filter plus get_queried_object_id() plus locate_template ;-) Oct 12, 2015 at 7:01

1 Answer 1


You can use the tag_template or taxonomy_template filters and check the queried object from within that, then use locate_template to get the template path.

function wpd_tag_template_filter( $templates = '' ) {
    $this_tag = get_queried_object();
    // check $this_tag->term_id, $this_tag->slug, etc.
    $templates = locate_template( 'my_custom_template.php', false );
    return $templates;
add_filter( 'tag_template', 'wpd_tag_template_filter' );

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