\ ˈkrüz \
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

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Synonyms & Antonyms for cruise

Synonyms: Verb

bowl, breeze, brush, coast, drift, flow, glide, roll, sail, skim, slide, slip, stream, sweep, whisk

Synonyms: Noun

crossing, passage, sail, voyage

Antonyms: Verb

flounder, struggle

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Examples of cruise in a Sentence


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.


We went on a weeklong cruise down the Yangtze River. They went on a cruise for their honeymoon.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Using a four-run first inning, the team cruised to a 6-1 victory over the Cyclones to snap a three-game losing streak. Chris Jeter, The Aegis, "Back home, IronBirds snap losing skid with 6-1 win over Brooklyn," 12 July 2018 Often a street will be wide enough for bikes to cruise along the far right-hand side. Thomas Harlander, Los Angeles Magazine, "A Driver’s Guide to Not Being a Jerk to Cyclists," 21 June 2018 At last year’s penultimate event, the Andretti Autosport star cruised to the front of the pack in the first practice session and never looked back. Jim Ayello, USA TODAY Sports, "Alexander Rossi creating familiar feeling at Grand Prix of Long Beach," 15 Apr. 2018 Due to a phenomenon called orbital decay, the empty, rogue space station has been steadily cruising back toward Earth on its own. Brian Resnick, Vox, "Chinese space station Tiangong-1 has returned to Earth, crashing into the South Pacific," 2 Apr. 2018 On April 24, Venus cruises into like-minded air sign Gemini, stimulating your passionate sensibilities. Aliza Kelly Faragher, Allure, "What April's Aquarius Horoscope Means for You," 29 Mar. 2018 Lauren Underwood cruised to victory in the race for the 14th district, according to The New York Times, reportedly making her the youngest black woman to run for Congress. Michelle Zacarias, Teen Vogue, "Illinois Primary Election 2018: J.B. Pritzker and Bruce Rauner Won, Setting Up the Race for Governor," 21 Mar. 2018 And now, as a new Quinnipiac poll of New Jersey shows, the embattled Menendez is now cruising towards reelection to third term in November. Ed Kilgore, Daily Intelligencer, "Menendez’s Popularity Bounces Back After Corruption Charges Dropped," 13 Mar. 2018 McEachern cruised to an 85-53 victory over Village Chrisitian (N.C.) in Game 6., "A recap of the Peachtree Corners Invitational at Norcross High School," 20 Jan. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Cheapest cabin for the 12-day/11-night Antarctica in Depth cruise is $16,095 before the early booking discount, and that’s for a March 2020 departure, when Antarctica is headed back into winter. Phil Marty,, "Adventures in vegan eating, a Canadian bucket list and more," 13 July 2018 There’s one other small hitch: Ericka is no mere cruise captain, but the great-granddaughter of Dracula’s arch-nemesis, famed vampire hunter Abraham Van Helsing. Barbara Vandenburgh, azcentral, "Monsters go on vacation in 'Hotel Transylvania 3'," 12 July 2018 The disaster didn't appear to deter visitors, with dozens of Western and some Chinese tourists seen leaving on boats Sunday for diving and cruise trips despite a warning issued by the Meteorological Department for smaller ships not to go to sea. Fox News, "Thailand pledges justice for Chinese victims of boat tragedy," 8 July 2018 Two headed goals from Harry Maguire and Dele Alli, either side of the half time break, saw England cruise comfortably into the last four., "Sweden 0-2 England: Football Takes Huge Step Closer to Home as Three Lions Dominate Against Swedes," 7 July 2018 This local celebration of tap dancing in all its many guises by the American Tap Dance Foundation returns for its 18th year with a diverse schedule of events, from workshops to award ceremonies to river cruises. Brian Schaefer, New York Times, "8 Dance Performances to See in N.Y.C. This Weekend," 5 July 2018 Create incredible new holiday memories on a cruise adventure this year. Princess Cruises, Bon Appetit, "Set Sail for Adventure This Holiday Season," 2 July 2018 Wayne’s annual car cruise, Cruisin’ US-12, will also be happening along Michigan Avenue 11 a.m.-8 p.m. on July 14. Brendel Hightower, Detroit Free Press, "Things to do in metro Detroit for the week of July 8 and beyond," 9 July 2018 Next on our wish list: an Emerald Waterways cruise in December with British baking queen Mary Berry., "A pastry pilgrimage to sample sweets from Food Network competitors," 6 July 2018

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.

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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

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Learn More about cruise

Phrases Related to cruise

cruise ship

cruising altitude

cruising speed

Statistics for cruise

Last Updated

23 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for cruise

The first known use of cruise was in 1651

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More Definitions for cruise



English Language Learners Definition of cruise

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to travel on a boat or ship to a number of places as a vacation

of a car, airplane, etc. : to move along at a steady speed

: to drive or be driven slowly



English Language Learners Definition of cruise (Entry 2 of 2)

: a journey on a boat or ship to a number of places as a vacation


\ ˈkrüz \
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

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Comments on cruise

What made you want to look up cruise? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to deposit or conceal in a hiding place

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