I have a very peculiar requirement, but hopefully I can explain it without being too confusing. I created a page template where I list some properties I get from an external XML file. So far no problems, and let's say the URL is like this:


Each property has a link that should redirect the user to a "Single Property" page that displays more information about it. I was wondering if there's a way to make the link like this:


Where 123 would be the id of the property. So if I have the URL like properties/some_id I want to be able to load a view file (like the single.php or page.php files), but specific to this URL condition.

Is this possible?


2 Answers 2


Add this to your theme's functions.php, or put it in a plugin.

add_action( 'init', 'wpse26388_rewrites_init' );
function wpse26388_rewrites_init(){
        'top' );

add_filter( 'query_vars', 'wpse26388_query_vars' );
function wpse26388_query_vars( $query_vars ){
    $query_vars[] = 'property_id';
    return $query_vars;

This adds a rewrite rule which directs requests to /properties/ with any combination of numbers following to pagename properties, with the query var property_id set. Just be sure to visit your permalinks settings page and save to flush rewrite rules, so this new rule will be included.

In your page-properties.php template, get_query_var('property_id') will return the property id if it was set, if it's not then show the default properties page.

  • 5
    This was CLOSE to working for me but I needed to add: add_filter('init','flushRules'); function flushRules(){ global $wp_rewrite; $wp_rewrite->flush_rules(); }
    – tooshel
    Commented Nov 13, 2012 at 17:52
  • 27
    @tooshel you definitely don't want to flush rules on every request, it is an expensive operation and will slow your site to a crawl. you only need to flush rules once, on plugin activation, or just by visiting the permalinks settings page.
    – Milo
    Commented Nov 13, 2012 at 20:17
  • 1
    Yeah, I get that . . . but when you are testing it's nice that it's in there!
    – tooshel
    Commented Nov 14, 2012 at 20:32
  • 3
    A smarter rewrite url regexp might be ^properties/([0-9]+)/?. Otherwise it would match something like example/properties/1 Commented Dec 12, 2014 at 17:34
  • 1
    What is location of page-properties.php file? I put it inside plugin directory. Is that right? Commented Jun 30, 2016 at 6:09

Another way to do it:

add_action('init', function() {
    add_rewrite_rule( '^properties/([0-9]+)/?',
                      'top' );
}, 10, 0);

add_action('init', function() {
    add_rewrite_tag( '%property_id%', '([^&]+)' );
}, 10, 0);

Codex Rewrite API/add rewrite rule

Codex Rewrite API/add rewrite tag

  • 3
    The accepted answer works with 4.7 (and 4.8), not sure why you think it doesn't. Your code is essentially doing the same thing, add_rewrite_tag adds the query var to the same array as the query_vars filter.
    – Milo
    Commented Jul 7, 2017 at 17:45
  • @Milo it probably didn’t work for me, but I don’t have a 4.7 handy anymore so I can’t check. I will edit my answer. Commented Jul 8, 2017 at 7:28
  • @Milo Although I personally prefer rewrite tag, but still tested the accepted answer and it works. Just some personal tastes, though.
    – Johansson
    Commented Jul 8, 2017 at 15:36
  • 1
    @JackJohansson rewrite tags are necessary when you're using it in a permastruct. It's just an extra bit of data that WordPress never uses in this case.
    – Milo
    Commented Jul 8, 2017 at 15:47
  • 1
    both rules can be added to the same method, ending up in a cleaner and more useful function to come back to and figure out if doing maintenance work
    – eballeste
    Commented Jul 14, 2018 at 15:51

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