Working in languages with special characters, I always struggle with remembering to change the data source encoding from system to utf8 when I import files. Is there a way to have it automatically use utf8 instead of system, or maybe changing the data source encoding of system to utf8?

1 Answer 1


From Settings >> Data Sources >> Data source handling, you may try to uncheck the Ignore shapefile encoding declaration option.

If you move the mouse cursor over the above option, this message appears:

Disable OGR on-the-fly conversion from declared encoding to UTF-8

  • 2
    Should be marked as 'Best answer' Commented Jul 24, 2017 at 17:27
  • 2
    I'm using QGIS 3.18.1-Zürich and don't have the Ignore shapefile encoding declaration under Data source handling.
    – Rodrigo
    Commented Apr 29, 2021 at 3:01

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