The LIKE operator is used in a WHERE clause to search for a specified pattern in a column.
There are two wildcards used in conjunction with the LIKE operator:
% - The percent sign represents zero, one, or multiple characters
_ - The underscore represents a single character
Note: MS Access uses a question mark (?) instead of the underscore (_).
The percent sign and the underscore can also be used in combinations!
SELECT column1, column2, ...
WHERE columnN LIKE pattern;
Tip: You can also combine any number of conditions using AND or OR operators.
Here are some examples showing different LIKE operators with '%' and '_' wildcards:
LIKE Operator Description
WHERE CustomerName LIKE 'a%' Finds any values that starts with "a"
WHERE CustomerName LIKE '%a' Finds any values that ends with "a"
WHERE CustomerName LIKE '%or%' Finds any values that have "or" in any position
WHERE CustomerName LIKE '_r%' Finds any values that have "r" in the second position
WHERE CustomerName LIKE 'a_%_%' Finds any values that starts with "a" and are at least 3 characters in length
WHERE ContactName LIKE 'a%o' Finds any values that starts with "a" and ends with "o"