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
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 Number pickup and race-day registration for both runs will be held at the Irish Social Club, 119 Park St., West Roxbury, starting at 9:15 a.m. Runners can register before race day at www. BostonGlobe.com, "Grandmother caring for her grandchildren needs Christmas help - The Boston Globe," 5 Dec. 2019 At an assembly plant in Sterling Heights, Michigan, Fiat Chrysler will invest $210 million to keep building light-duty Ram pickup and new high-performance version of the truck. Washington Post, "Local union leaders send Fiat Chrysler contract to members," 4 Dec. 2019 The app links private plane owners and pilots with passengers looking to rent a plane, setting the pickup and drop-off time. Mallory Moench, SFChronicle.com, "Bay Area super-commuters take to the skies in planes, helicopters," 2 Dec. 2019 Jeep’s Gladiator and Wrangler won the mid-size pickup and off-road SUV awards. Houston Chronicle, "TAWA: Ram 1500 declared top truck; Kia Telluride wins the SUV crown," 29 Nov. 2019 Walmart is also investing heavily in its digital, pickup and delivery options. Joe Taschler, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Kroger plans an automated fulfillment warehouse in Pleasant Prairie that could create up to 400 new jobs," 14 Nov. 2019 Williams was sought over the theft of the couple's pickup and RV. Fox News, "Utah man arrested in Mexico in connection with car theft from couple found dead in Texas," 7 Nov. 2019 Thompson and his friend left in the pickup and Giannelli and his friend left in the friend’s Mercedes sedan. Jesse Leavenworth, courant.com, "State police: Glastonbury man claimed self defense in fatal Preston shooting," 30 Oct. 2019 The immediate removal of the structures followed an Oct. 16 meeting during which residents aired concerns about student safety amid increasingly dangerous traffic during the school’s pickup and drop-off times. Sara Cardine, La Cañada Valley Sun, "Paradise Canyon wheel stops removed, city goes back to drawing board," 22 Oct. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Tesla is aiming for the heart of the auto industry's profit machine with its own version of the heavy pickup truck. Arkansas Online, "PHOTOS: Tesla edges into pickup truck market with electric model," 22 Nov. 2019 Tesla is aiming for the heart of the auto industry’s profit machine with its own version of the heavy pickup truck. Rachel Lerman, Anchorage Daily News, "Tesla’s flashy debut of Cybertruck marred by mishap with ‘unbreakable’ windows," 22 Nov. 2019 Related video: Piece of steel impales pickup truck in Pennsylvania STAY INFORMED: Sign up to receive breaking news alerts delivered to your email here. Htv National Desk, Houston Chronicle, "Metal bar falls off big rig, impales car passenger on highway in California," 4 Nov. 2019 His eponymous company last week fleshed out its plan to conquer the wilds on battery power, with an all-electric four-door SUV and four-door pickup truck. Wired, "Bollinger's Electric Pickup and SUV Are Made for the Mud," 8 Oct. 2019 There are plenty of questions about whether pickup truck buyers will have any interest in the latest Tesla. Matt Mcfarland, CNN, "Tesla's Cybertruck has become the butt of every internet joke," 22 Nov. 2019 Last night’s reveal of the angular, faceted, clipped, cropped, and generally otherworldly pickup truck in Los Angeles startled those in attendance, the media, and the Twitterverse. Eric Adams, Popular Mechanics, "9 Things You Need To Know About Tesla's Incredibly Weird and Possibly Genius Cybertruck," 22 Nov. 2019 Tacoma is the most popular midsize pickup truck on the market, selling almost 250,000 vehicles a year. Randy Diamond, ExpressNews.com, "Toyota’s $391 million expansion the first major renovation of San Antonio plant in nine years," 17 Sep. 2019 My mom wasn’t preppy like the other mothers at camp pickup day, who wore ponytails and matchy outfits. Devorah Heitner, Longreads, "What’s Happening to My Body?," 13 Sep. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Jameson Williams, wide receiver: Who better to pick up where Olave left off than another speedy receiver? Nathan Baird, cleveland, "Which Ohio State football sub could join Chris Olave’s Michigan-killer legacy today?," 30 Nov. 2019 At both Nordstrom and Macy’s, lines to pick up online orders were shorter, in many cases, than lines in other parts of the store. Lisa Schencker, chicagotribune.com, "Earlier deals, online shopping shrink Black Friday crowds, but consumers still spending," 29 Nov. 2019 Continue south on Main Street to pick up pillows and fine linens at Laurie Holladay Interiors, or dream about decorating your own Virginia country estate with 19th-century furnishings at Annette La Velle Antiques. Susan O'keefe, National Geographic, "How to see the Virginia Piedmont? Just follow Thomas Jefferson," 29 Nov. 2019 Authorities say Feliciano was using different addresses throughout Rhode Island to pick up packages of cash. BostonGlobe.com, "You're using a browser set to private or incognito mode.," 29 Nov. 2019 In June, Liverpool were celebrating picking up their sixth Champions League trophy in Madrid. Dominic Rech, CNN, "Could Red Bull Salzburg and Erling Braut Håland knock out defending champion Liverpool?," 28 Nov. 2019 Here are a few storylines to watch as the Cardinals look to pick up their seventh win of the season. Lucas Aulbach, The Courier-Journal, "You won't need a TV remote to watch Louisville basketball take on Western Kentucky," 27 Nov. 2019 Airport officials were advising anyone who had to pick up an arriving passenger Thursday to use the lot near the airport Sky Train at 44th and Washington streets to avoid crowded roads leading into the airport. Arizona Republic, azcentral, "Arizona weather, travel updates: Snowstorm could shut freeways up north," 27 Nov. 2019 Chinese giant Didi Chuxing came under scrutiny in May 2018, when state media reported a driver used his father's account to pick up and kill a woman in the central Chinese city of Zhengzhou. Amy Thomson And Nate Lanxon, courant.com, "Uber’s London ban marks global backlash for ride-hailing giants," 27 Nov. 2019

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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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

9 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Pickup.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pickup%20truck. Accessed 11 December 2019.

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More Definitions for pickup


How to pronounce pick up (audio)

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

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More from Merriam-Webster on pickup

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with pickup

Spanish Central: Translation of pickup

Nglish: Translation of pickup for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about pickup

Comments on pickup

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heavy with or as if with moisture

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