off·​shore | \ ˈȯf-ˈshȯr How to pronounce offshore (audio) \

Definition of offshore

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : from the shore : seaward also : at a distance from the shore
2 : outside the country : abroad


off·​shore | \ ˈȯf-ˌshȯr How to pronounce offshore (audio) \

Definition of offshore (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : coming or moving away from the shore toward the water an offshore breeze
2a : situated off the shore but within waters under a country's control offshore fisheries
b : distant from the shore — compare inshore
3 : situated or operating in a foreign country offshore mutual funds offshore banking


off·​shore | \ ˈȯf-ˌshȯr How to pronounce offshore (audio) \

Definition of offshore (Entry 3 of 3)

: off the shore of

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms for offshore

Synonyms: Adjective

alongshore, coastal, inshore, littoral, nearshore, shoreside

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of offshore in a Sentence


We sailed to an offshore island. He works on an offshore oil rig. They opened an offshore bank account. He traced the money to an offshore investment company.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb

With the WTA New Haven event headed offshore, there’s a spot open the week before the U.S. Open. Jon Wertheim,, "50 Parting Thoughts From the 2019 French Open: Rafa, Barty and So Much More," 9 June 2019 The final straw for Moreno was WikiLeaks’ decision to spread information about a purported offshore account controlled by the president’s brother. Gonzalo Solano, The Seattle Times, "Exasperated Ecuador ends asylum for world’s worst houseguest," 13 Apr. 2019 As the global demand for renewable energy ramps up, wind farms are becoming bigger as well as more numerous — and as suitable sites on land grow scarce in some parts of the world, power companies are looking offshore for new places to build. NBC News, "World's biggest wind farm would have its own artificial island," 19 Jan. 2018 Such offshore sites could store crude on shore and then pump it 15 miles offshore, where the deep water allows large ships to fill up. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "America's New Energy Coast," 19 Mar. 2019 ExxonMobil will still keep its 30 percent stake in developments offshore of the Russian island Sakhalin, which is just north of Japan. Jordan Blum, Houston Chronicle, "Exxon Mobil abandons JV with Russia's largest oil company," 1 Mar. 2018 The blasts are conducted in preparation for potential offshore drilling, which the administration has proposed to expand from the Atlantic to the Arctic and Pacific oceans. Meg Kinnard, The Seattle Times, "Environmental groups to sue over offshore drilling tests," 10 Dec. 2018 Workers -- and anyone else going offshore -- need to know what to do in the event of a crash or botched landing. Jennifer Larino,, "One of our reporters spent a day learning how to escape from a sinking helicopter: Watch the video," 26 Feb. 2018 Andy Mattson, an accountant with Moss Adams LLP in California who advises Silicon Valley companies, said the number-issuing halt has delayed deals for startups, some of which are based offshore to prevent double taxation of investors. Laura Saunders, WSJ, "One Way Shutdown is Hindering Business: Inaccessible IRS Numbers," 10 Jan. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Connecticut Hartford: The Department of Energy and Environmental Protection commissioner will soon be soliciting bids to develop 30% of the state’s entire energy load from offshore wind sources. USA TODAY, "Black Union regiment flag, Notorious BIG, Pikachu the mini pony: News from around our 50 states," 12 June 2019 In November, German authorities searched Deutsche Bank headquarters in Frankfurt as part of an investigation into whether employees had helped customers use offshore tax havens to transfer money obtained illegally. Jack Ewing,, "Deutsche Bank acknowledges lax money-laundering controls," 10 June 2019 If the company is still able to account for its profits in offshore havens or low-tax countries, then nations would apply a global minimum tax rate. John Detrixhe, Quartz, "The world’s biggest economies are moving closer to a global tax for big tech," 8 June 2019 Both kings and Spanish are available anywhere from a hundred yards off the beach to the offshore artificial reefs, and the short red snapper season is underway through July 28. Frank Sargeant,, "Friday Fishing Report: Cooler temperatures help anglers," 7 June 2019 These are places where population densities are frequently high and land for onshore wind farms is thus expensive, while building those farms offshore increases the awkwardness of construction and maintenance. The Economist, "An innovative approach to making electricity from the wind," 7 June 2019 Japan is also pushing forward with offshore carbon storage underneath the seafloor off Hokkaido island. Eric Niiler, WIRED, "What to Do About CO2? Try Stuffing It Into the Gulf of Mexico," 6 June 2019 On November 11, 2018, the largest offshore volcanic event in recorded history occurred, with an origin point near the African island nation of Madagascar and the island of Mayotte, which is controlled by the French government. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "Where Did This Massive Underwater Volcano Come From?," 22 May 2019 The provision — designed to encourage companies to bring offshore profits and intellectual property back to the United States — is a triumph for an industry that licenses its products worldwide. Bloomberg,, "Trump’s tax cuts help his loudest critics in Hollywood (and hurt lower-income showbiz pros)," 3 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Preposition

Iceland’s hope of finding oil offshore its coast is fading after China and Norway decided to back out of the island nation’s only remaining exploration license. Ragnhildur Sigurdardottir,, "Iceland’s Oil Dream Is in Peril," 23 Jan. 2018 Hurricane Jose, which had threatened the northern Caribbean a few days after Irma before turning north into the Atlantic, is moving slowly offshore of the central U.S. Atlantic Coast. José De Córdoba And, WSJ, "Hurricane Maria Bears Down on Puerto Rico After Battering Dominica," 20 Sep. 2017

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

See More

First Known Use of offshore


1720, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1769, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1942, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about offshore

Statistics for offshore

Last Updated

14 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for offshore

The first known use of offshore was in 1720

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for offshore



English Language Learners Definition of offshore

: moving away from the shore toward the water
: located in the ocean away from the shore
: located in a foreign country


off·​shore | \ ˈȯf-ˌshȯr How to pronounce offshore (audio) \

Kids Definition of offshore

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : coming or moving away from the shore an offshore breeze
2 : located off the shore offshore oil


off·​shore | \ ˈȯf-ˈshȯr How to pronounce offshore (audio) \

Kids Definition of offshore (Entry 2 of 2)

: from the shore : at a distance from the shore He swam offshore. The boat is anchored offshore.

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on offshore

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with offshore

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for offshore

Spanish Central: Translation of offshore

Nglish: Translation of offshore for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of offshore for Arabic Speakers

Comments on offshore

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


a device or gadget

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words for Summer: A Quiz

  • a closeup of a sunflower
  • Which of the following words means “of or relating to summer”?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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