\ ˈkrüz How to pronounce cruise (audio) \
cruised; cruising

Definition of cruise

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to sail about touching at a series of ports
2 : to move or proceed speedily, smoothly, or effortlessly I'll cruise over to her house to see if she's home
3 : to travel without destination or purpose
4a : to go about the streets at random but on the lookout for possible developments the cabdriver cruised for an hour before being hailed
b : to search (as in public places) for a sexual partner
5a of an airplane : to fly at the most efficient operating speed
b of an automobile : to travel at a speed suitable for being maintained for a long distance

transitive verb

1 : to cruise over or about
2 : to inspect (land) with reference to possible lumber yield
3a : to search in (a public place) for a sexual partner
b : to approach and suggest sexual relations to
4 : to explore or search the offerings of especially : surf cruise the Internet



Definition of cruise (Entry 2 of 2)

: an act or an instance of cruising especially : a tour by ship

Examples of cruise in a Sentence

Verb We cruised for a week down the Yangtze River. He dreams of cruising the Mediterranean. The bus was cruising at 55 miles per hour. We were cruising along the highway. The plane was cruising at 30,000 feet. On Friday nights, teenagers cruise the main street in town to show off their cars. A car cruised past us. Noun We went on a weeklong cruise down the Yangtze River. They went on a cruise for their honeymoon. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The Ocean Navigator is one of two 202-passenger American Queen ships that will cruise the Great Lakes this summer, making 34 stops in Cleveland. Susan Glaser, cleveland, 11 May 2022 The first duck boat tour was given in the Dells in 1946 with just one vehicle, and more than 75 years later 92 ducks cruise the river and trails every summer. Chelsey Lewis, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 5 May 2022 His political opponent received only five minutes of national airtime ahead of the April 3 vote, allowing Orbán to cruise to re-election last month. Christiaan Hetzner, Fortune, 2 May 2022 Opening in June 2022, the lakeside grounds will include a rose garden, orchard, swimming pool, tennis courts, an open-air gym in an olive grove, and a private dock on the lake with vintage boats for guests to cruise in style. Elise Taylor, Vogue, 26 Apr. 2022 Valiant Lady will then head to Barcelona to cruise throughout the Mediterranean in its first summer season, according to a press release shared with Travel + Leisure. Cailey Rizzo, Travel + Leisure, 9 July 2021 Dwayne Johnson stars as a wisecracking skipper of a creaky old boat hired by a fearless doctor (played by Emily Blunt) to cruise down the Amazon in search of a magical tree. cleveland, 18 May 2021 Biden first ordered two U.S. Navy destroyers to cruise the Black Sea in support of Ukrainian independence and then canceled the order after Putin closed the Kerch Strait, which is one of Ukraine’s outlets to the Black Sea. Paul Bedard, Washington Examiner, 17 Apr. 2021 The top-seeded Bears overcame a slow start offensively to cruise past 16th-seeded Hartford 79-55 in Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, on Friday. Brent Zwerneman, San Antonio Express-News, 19 Mar. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun There were also more casual approaches to showing leg, as seen by Moses Ingram in an asymmetrical Sacai skirt, or Deepika Padukone in a voluminous coat and skirt by Louis Vuitton at the label’s cruise 2023 show in San Diego. Christian Allaire, Vogue, 16 May 2022 The cruise sails from Black River Landing along the Black River and then heads to Lake Erie as the sun starts to set. Marc Bona, cleveland, 14 May 2022 Louis Vuitton drew a host of stars to San Diego’s seaside enclave of La Jolla on May 2 to take in its otherworldly 2023 cruise collection runway show. Degen Pener, The Hollywood Reporter, 13 May 2022 Phoebe Dynevor swapped her Regency-era ball gowns for something a bit more casual—yet equally as stylish—at Louis Vuitton's 2023 cruise show. Chelsey Sanchez, Harper's BAZAAR, 13 May 2022 The ship on his recent Galápagos Islands cruise had no Internet connection, which gave him some quality time with his daughters. Christopher Elliott, Washington Post, 12 May 2022 Alright, so what's different about the Disney Wish cruise? Brie Schwartz, Woman's Day, 11 May 2022 For both an Easter Sunday meal and outing, BB Riverboats will hold their annual Easter cruise this Sunday from 1 to 3 p.m. Victoria Moorwood, The Enquirer, 12 Apr. 2022 Many of the oligarchs have seen their cruise -- their properties seized in Europe. ABC News, 6 Mar. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cruise.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of cruise


1651, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1


1696, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for cruise


Dutch kruisen to make a cross, cruise, from Middle Dutch crucen, from crūce cross, from Latin cruc-, crux

Buying Guide

Our Reviews team has selected the best travel products of the year.

Learn More About cruise

Dictionary Entries Near cruise



cruise car

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for cruise

Last Updated

18 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Cruise.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 May. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for cruise


\ ˈkrüz How to pronounce cruise (audio) \
cruised; cruising

Kids Definition of cruise

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to travel by ship often stopping at a series of ports They cruised along the coast.
2 : to travel at a steady pace



Kids Definition of cruise (Entry 2 of 2)

: a trip on a ship

More from Merriam-Webster on cruise

Nglish: Translation of cruise for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of cruise for Arabic Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Name That Food

  • a-light
  • Name these cookies!
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!