Download a YouTube video subtitles file with yt-dlp

Download a YouTube videos subtitle file and choose a specific subtitle file format using yt-dlp.

yt dlp install and usage guide

To list the available subtitles on a YouTube video with yt-dlp:

yt-dlp --list-subs VIDEOURL

If the video has subtitles it will print them out including their available formats:

Language Name    Formats
en       English vtt, ttml, srv3, srv2, srv1, json3

Choosing the language and saving it as a subtitle format file:

yt-dlp --write-subs en --sub-format json3 VIDEOURL

Or as default will be a .vtt file

yt-dlp --write-subs en