pick·​up | \ ˈpik-ˌəp How to pronounce pickup (audio) \

Definition of pickup

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : one that is picked up: such as
a : a hitchhiker who is given a ride
b : a temporary chance acquaintance
c : a player acquired from another team
2 : the act or process of picking up: such as
a : a revival of business activity
c : the act or technique of making the acquaintance of a previously unknown person especially for amorous purposes
3 : the conversion of mechanical movements into electrical impulses in the reproduction of sound also : a device (as on an electric guitar) for making such conversion
4a : the reception of sound or an image into a radio or television transmitting apparatus for conversion into electrical signals
b : a device (such as a microphone or a television camera) for converting sound or the image of a scene into electrical signals
5 : a light truck having an enclosed cab and an open body with low sides and tailgate

called also pickup truck

6 : a pickup game playing pickup



Definition of pickup (Entry 2 of 3)

: utilizing or comprising local or available personnel especially without formal organization a pickup basketball game a pickup band

pick up

picked up; picking up; picks up

Definition of pick up (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

1a : to take hold of and lift up
b : to gather together : collect picked up all the pieces
c : to clean up : tidy
2 : to take (passengers or freight) into a vehicle
3a : to acquire casually or by chance picked up a valuable antique at an auction
b : to acquire by study or experience : learn picking up a great deal of knowledge in the process— Robert Schleicher
c : to obtain especially by payment : buy picked up some groceries
d : to acquire (a player) especially from another team through a trade or by financial recompense
e : to accept for the purpose of paying offered to pick up the tab
f : to come down with : catch picked up a cold
g : gain, earn picked up a few yards on the last play picked up her first victory
4a : to enter informally into conversation or companionship with (a previously unknown person) had a brief affair with a girl he picked up in a bar
b : to take into custody the police picked up the fugitive
5a : to catch sight of : perceive picked up the harbor lights
b : to come to and follow picked up the outlaw's trail
c : to bring within range of sight or hearing pick up distant radio signals
d : understand, catch didn't pick up the hint
6a : revive
b : increase
7 : to resume after a break : continue pick up the discussion tomorrow
8 : to assume responsibility for guarding (an opponent) in an athletic contest
9 : to provide needed support or assistance to (someone who has faltered or failed, such as a teammate who has made an error) in a collaborative effort … Burns allowed only five hits and did not issue a walk. She also picked up her teammates after several fielding errors.— John Knebels We have faith. We don't panic. Even in all these one-run ballgames, we have trust in each other that we're going to pull it out. We pick each other up. On days we're not pitching it great, our offense gets going and vice versa.— Marco Gonzales

intransitive verb

1 : to recover or increase speed, vigor, or activity : improve after the strike, business picked up the wind began to pick up
2 : to put things in order was always picking up after her
3 : to pack up one's belongings couldn't just pick up and leave
pick up on
b : to become aware of : notice
2 : to adopt as one's own : take up

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Synonyms & Antonyms for pickup

Synonyms: Verb

Antonyms: Verb

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Examples of pickup in a Sentence

Noun The fee pays for garbage pickup. The school bus was late for its afternoon pickup. The truck is scheduled to make a pickup today. Adjective He plays with pickup bands at nightclubs. What's the pickup scene like in this city? Verb he has a knack for picking up a language in a few weeks pick up all of your things because we have to be off this beach before dark
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Hyundai has priced its new compact pickup competitively, but not as low as its chief rival the Ford Maverick. Joey Capparella, Car and Driver, 13 July 2021 The Halls, who are Black, found their vehicle tires slashed and offensive words and symbols written on their pickup on Tallman Avenue. Christina Hall, Detroit Free Press, 13 July 2021 At participating locations in the select markets, Planteroni Pizza will be available to for delivery using the Little Caesars app or pre-pay and its Pizza Portal pickup. Sue Selasky, USA TODAY, 12 July 2021 Within seconds, his Ford Explorer pickup was hit by a Tesla Model 3 that was traveling about 60 miles per hour on Autopilot. New York Times, 5 July 2021 The sheriff drove his white pickup down a familiar dirt road past Needle Peak Mountain toward another macabre scene deep in the vast desert. Dallas News, 2 July 2021 The company’s upcoming production facilities in Berlin and Texas, which are likely to open in late 2021 or in early 2022, and the introduction of its new pickup, the Cybertruck, are likely to be key to its near-term growth plans. Trefis Team, Forbes, 28 June 2021 Still, the company is nearing production of its pickup, giving it a leg up on other manufacturers that are months or years behind. Eliot Brown, WSJ, 19 June 2021 The company, which went public last year through a merger with a SPAC, has been struggling to ramp up production of its electric pickup, the Endurance. Julia Horowitz, CNN, 15 June 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Visitors had to be ferried in and out in pickup trucks. Jere Longman New York Times, Star Tribune, 13 July 2021 The company operates a fleet of roughly 45 vehicles nationwide, mostly pickup trucks. Mike Colias, WSJ, 12 July 2021 Still, in pickup trucks on hillsides, students have also shown enormous resiliency. Sunnie R. Clahchischiligi, Rolling Stone, 8 July 2021 West Virginia included pickup trucks and hunting rifles in its giveaways. Sarah Ladd, The Courier-Journal, 2 July 2021 White men in pickup trucks would sit outside her house to intimidate her. Washington Post, 26 June 2021 On a recent day, three SUV’s and two pickup trucks sat unattended in a grassy clearing on the Mexican side. Dudley Althaus, San Antonio Express-News, 26 June 2021 To reduce the number of chips needed in some of its pickup trucks and larger SUVs, GM will manufacture them without automatic stop-start technology. Sebastian Blanco, Car and Driver, 12 June 2021 The plan would be to scale up the number of lockers and add other pickup locations like the team shop or the Farenheit restaurant itself, as well as adding more premium restaurants and traditional concession menu items for mobile ordering. Shlomo Sprung, Forbes, 21 Apr. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The supply of semiconductors will pick up, and shipping snarls will get untangled. Justin Lahart, WSJ, 15 July 2021 In the new room, each officer will pick up his or her bodycam, issued strictly to that officer, at the beginning of each shift. Steve Lord, chicagotribune.com, 15 July 2021 The Fairly OddParents revival will pick up years after its predecessor ended, according to the news outlet. Dory Jackson, PEOPLE.com, 14 July 2021 Ian Ziering and Tara Reid pick up their chainsaws once again — this time with the help of Dr. Tristan Guttridge and to see if a real Sharknado could happen. oregonlive, 11 July 2021 Many of the community members who stopped by to pick up food for the weekend, distributed by local non-profits, had no idea that Facebook had organized the program. Musadiq Bidar, CBS News, 7 July 2021 And all the dishes are served with authentic Injera (a thin, sponge bread used to pick up food with your hands). Chelsea Davis, Forbes, 14 June 2021 So often, the walkers would skip it, instead darting across traffic to pick up food. Aarian Marshall, Wired, 1 June 2021 Registration is required by Friday June 4 to pick up food or volunteer at vanc.me/food. Linda Mcintosh, San Diego Union-Tribune, 1 June 2021

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


1848, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1898, in the meaning defined above


14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

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Learn More About pickup

Time Traveler for pickup

Time Traveler

The first known use of pickup was in the 14th century

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Statistics for pickup

Last Updated

14 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Pickup.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pickup. Accessed 23 Jul. 2021.

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More Definitions for pickup



English Language Learners Definition of pickup

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a small truck that has an open back with low sides
: the act of going somewhere to get a person or thing that you will then take to another place
: an increase in activity



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

: organized informally with people who are available or nearby at the time
: of or relating to the act of trying to meet strangers in order to have brief sexual relationships with them


pick·​up | \ ˈpik-ˌəp How to pronounce pickup (audio) \

Kids Definition of pickup

: a light truck with an open body and low sides

More from Merriam-Webster on pickup

Nglish: Translation of pickup for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about pickup


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