free ride


Definition of free ride

1 : a benefit obtained at another's expense or without the usual cost or effort … a group of students who have been assigned to do a report where only one student cares, does all the work and the others go along for a free ride— Roger T. Johnson and David W. Johnson also : soft or easy treatment Generally speaking, the press has given Jacobson a free ride. Spy
2 : an arrangement (such as a scholarship) providing a student with tuition at no cost athletes getting a free ride at college College officials hope that the idea of a free ride to a new engineering school with lofty ambitions will attract a highly accomplished student body …— Jeffrey Mervis

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Other Words from free ride

free ride intransitive verb
free rider noun

Examples of free ride in a Sentence

The state university offered him a free ride for all four years of college—his football scholarship would cover tuition, room and board, and other expenses. companies getting a free ride at the taxpayer's expense

Recent Examples on the Web

VIA Metropolitan Transit will provide free rides to people needing transportation to cooling centers. Fares Sabawi,, "‘Fierce and quick’ storm uproots trees, downs power lines," 7 June 2019 Those vehicles already have been given tax credits, so a further free ride is unconscionable. WSJ, "Time to Take a Fresh Look At the Federal Gasoline Tax," 29 Mar. 2019 In Wickenburg, Ariz,. the Freedom Express leases two vans to provide free rides to residents 60 and older five days a week. Clare Ansberry, WSJ, "For Elderly in Rural Areas, Volunteers Step In," 10 Dec. 2018 In Dayton, Ohio, the transit authority partnered with Lyft to provide free rides between select transit stops. Aditi Shrikant, Vox, "As bus ridership continues to decrease, cities are turning to creative alternatives.," 5 Nov. 2018 Duet coordinates volunteers to provide free rides to seniors in Fountain Hills, Glendale, Paradise Valley, Peoria, Phoenix and Scottsdale south of Bell Road. Rebekah L. Sanders, azcentral, "Uber and Lyft are making it harder for Arizona seniors to get around," 12 June 2018 Major cities like Los Angeles and Houston made public transit free on Election Day, and major bike share operators like Motivate and Bicycle gave out free rides as well. Alissa Walker, Curbed, "Transit on the ballot: How cities voted to fund transportation," 7 Nov. 2018 The companies give out free rides to new customers, and Ofo has only recently started charging riders at all. Mark Harris, WIRED, "The Bike Share War Is Shaking Up Seattle Like Nowhere Else," 14 June 2018 Plus, Dunkin’ is teaming up with Lyft to give free rides to Dunkin’ Donuts locations. Felicia Gans,, "Here’s where you can get a free doughnut in the Boston area today," 1 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'free ride.' 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 free ride

1882, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for free ride

Last Updated

20 Jun 2019

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Time Traveler for free ride

The first known use of free ride was in 1882

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More Definitions for free ride

free ride


English Language Learners Definition of free ride

: special treatment that involves giving away something that is valuable or expensive

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Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with free ride

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showing courage and determination

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