shut·​tle | \ ˈshə-tᵊl How to pronounce shuttle (audio) \

Definition of shuttle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a device used in weaving for passing the thread of the weft between the threads of the warp
b : a spindle-shaped device holding the thread in tatting, knotting, or netting
c : a sliding thread holder for the lower thread of a sewing machine that carries the lower thread through a loop of the upper thread to make a stitch
3a : a going back and forth regularly over an often short route by a vehicle
b(1) : an established route used in a shuttle
(2) : a vehicle used in a shuttle a shuttle bus


shuttled; shuttling\ ˈshət-​liŋ How to pronounce shuttling (audio) , ˈshə-​tᵊl-​iŋ \

Definition of shuttle (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to cause to move or travel back and forth frequently
2 : to transport in, by, or as if by a shuttle shuttled them to school

intransitive verb

1 : to move or travel back and forth frequently
2 : to move by or as if by a shuttle

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Other Words from shuttle


shuttleless adjective

Examples of shuttle in a Sentence

Noun A shuttle takes people from the parking lot to the airport. Verb We shuttled between the city and the country all summer. A bus shuttled people from the parking lot to the dock.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Single drivers or those with one passenger must park at a further lot, where a shuttle service will ferry them to the lifts. USA TODAY, "Rare black rhino born, dengue fever, ‘Santa Lady,’ disputed Lincoln hat: News from around our 50 states," 26 Dec. 2019 Parking on the refuge is limited, so a shuttle service will be operating from the Princess Theater in Decatur during the festival. Dennis Pillion |, al, "Endangered whooping cranes are back at Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge," 24 Dec. 2019 The shuttle bus service got its start taking passengers to and from Los Angeles International Airport, and eventually its blue and yellow vans serviced more than 100 cities worldwide, from Cleveland to Kuala Lumpur. Chauncey Alcorn, CNN, "SuperShuttle airport business is shutting down for good at the end of the year," 13 Dec. 2019 Free shuttle service is offered from the Graceland House to Elvis Presley’s Memphis, Graceland Exhibition Complex, and the airport. Kelly Corbett, House Beautiful, "Priscilla Presley Is Coming to Graceland to Teach the "Southern Lifestyle"," 10 Dec. 2019 GoRide is the second shuttle service ended by Ford within a year. Jamie L. Lareau, Detroit Free Press, "Ford program offered rides to doctor's offices. Why they're abruptly ending it.," 6 Dec. 2019 Northland agreed to offer a shuttle service to the Newton Highlands MBTA stop, plus money for transportation improvements and other upgrades, including $1.5 million for work at the Countryside Elementary School., ", the Newton Housing Partnership, the League of Women Voters of Newton, and the Newton-Needham Regional Chamber.," 3 Dec. 2019 Enter Water Street Brewery and City Tours Milwaukee, which will provide free Black Friday beer shuttle service to eight Milwaukee breweries starting at 11 a.m. Friday. Kathy Flanigan, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "There's a free bus service to 8 Milwaukee breweries running all day on Black Friday," 25 Nov. 2019 The program calls for offering shuttle service from the hotels to the two closest metro stops twice a day. Washington Post, "Homeless children were struggling to get to school on time. Now, D.C. is launching a shuttle service to help them.," 20 Nov. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb When this dust lands, the colonies shuttle the iron-rich mineral particles into the center of the colony and start extracting iron(II). Emily Underwood, Smithsonian Magazine, "The Complicated Role of Iron in Ocean Health and Climate Change," 6 Jan. 2020 Emergency crews shuttled residents who wished to remain in their homes across the creek Monday to buy supplies. Tess Williams, Anchorage Daily News, "Willow Creek flooding could keep the Deneki Bridge closed until spring," 27 Dec. 2019 Uber alone shuttles passengers on more than a billion U.S. rides per year, using public roads and infrastructure to conduct its business. Faiz Siddiqui, Washington Post, "Uber knows more about its rape problem than anyone else. What should it do with that data?," 23 Dec. 2019 Each week, the family shuttled to a new church with some belongings. Erin Clark,, "For one Maine family, the long, hard road from ‘nowhere’ to home," 21 Dec. 2019 For the second year, the classic trolley shuttled shoppers between four stops, including the Shoppes at Somerset Square, Giovanni’s Pizza, Whole Foods, and Baribeault Jewelers. Steve Smith,, "Glastonbury Town Center Celebrates Holidays," 12 Dec. 2019 The family, originally from Forest Hills, Long Island, shuttled regularly to Manhattan for what would be some 60-odd commercials in seven years. Aurelie Corinthios,, "Inside Nancy McKeon and Late Philip McKeon's Close Sibling Bond," 11 Dec. 2019 The adoption process will also benefit from the new shelter, as pets waiting to be put up for adoption at the Animal House previously had to be shuttled from the shelter. Darcy Costello, The Courier-Journal, "'Everything's an upgrade': New animal shelter opening Monday after years of need," 18 Oct. 2019 But because there is no on-site technologist to run it, an off-island contractor has had to shuttle to the base to service it. New York Times, "The Cost of Running Guantánamo Bay: $13 Million Per Prisoner," 16 Sep. 2019

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


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


1550, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for shuttle


Middle English shittle, shutle, from Old English scutel, scytel dart; akin to Old Norse skutill bolt, Old English scēotan to shoot — more at shoot

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Time Traveler for shuttle

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for shuttle

Last Updated

10 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Shuttle.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 19 January 2020.

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More Definitions for shuttle


How to pronounce shuttle (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of shuttle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a vehicle that travels back and forth between places
: a pointed tool that is used to weave cloth by pulling a thread from side to side across other threads



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

: to travel back and forth between places
: to bring (people) back and forth between places


shut·​tle | \ ˈshə-tᵊl How to pronounce shuttle (audio) \

Kids Definition of shuttle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an instrument used in weaving to carry the thread back and forth from side to side through the threads that run lengthwise
2 : a vehicle (as a bus or train) that goes back and forth over a short route


shuttled; shuttling

Kids Definition of shuttle (Entry 2 of 2)

: to move or bring back and forth rapidly or often The ferry shuttled travelers across the river.

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More from Merriam-Webster on shuttle

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with shuttle

Spanish Central: Translation of shuttle

Nglish: Translation of shuttle for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of shuttle for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about shuttle

Comments on shuttle

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


to insert between existing elements

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