\ ˈtrip How to pronounce trip (audio) \
tripped; tripping

Definition of trip

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to catch the foot against something so as to stumble
2 : to make a mistake or false step (as in morality or accuracy)
3a : to dance, skip, or caper with light quick steps
b : to walk with light quick steps
4 : to stumble in articulation when speaking
5 : to make a journey
6a : to actuate a mechanism
b : to become operative
7a : to get high on a psychedelic drug (such as LSD) : turn on often used with out
b slang : freak sense 3b

transitive verb

1a : to cause to stumble often used with up
b : to cause to fail : obstruct often used with up
2 : to detect in a misstep, fault, or blunder also : expose usually used with up
3 : to release or operate (a mechanism) especially by releasing a catch or detent trip the fire alarm
4 : to raise (an anchor) from the bottom so as to hang free
5a : to pull (a yard) into a perpendicular position for lowering
b : to hoist (a topmast) far enough to enable the fid to be withdrawn preparatory to housing or lowering
6 archaic : to perform (a dance) lightly or nimbly
trip the light fantastic
: dance



Definition of trip (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : voyage, journey
b : a single round or tour on a business errand
2a : an intense visionary experience undergone by a person who has taken a psychedelic drug (such as LSD)
b : an exciting or unusual experience the party was a trip
3 : absorption in or obsession with an interest, attitude, or state of mind a guilt trip on a nostalgia trip
4 : a faltering step caused by stumbling
5 : a stroke or catch by which a wrestler is made to lose footing
6 : error, misstep
7 : a quick light step
8a : the action of tripping mechanically
b : a device for tripping a mechanism (such as a catch or detent)

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of trip in a Sentence


He deliberately tried to trip me. The dancers tripped off the stage.


They got back from their trip yesterday. a trip around the world He was on an acid trip. an ankle injury caused by a trip
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

In the only other game reported this week, Bartlett tripped Eagle River 25-0 on Thursday behind two touchdowns apiece from Taejah Taylor and Saravi Facine. Anchorage Daily News, "One week into flag football season, Dimond and West are both 2-0," 25 Aug. 2019 Little has tripped up the 20-year-old catcher in 2019. Jeff Sanders, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Minors: Luis Campusano named Cal League co-MVP, then walks off win for Storm," 22 Aug. 2019 The Sooners nearly were tripped up against Army on Sept. 22, escaping with a 28-21 overtime win against the Cadets. Matt Murschel,, "2019 College Football Rankings: No. 4 Oklahoma," 21 Aug. 2019 Without any hesitation, Josh ran into the parade, kneeled down and made sure the loose laces wouldn't trip up the guard during the march. Fox News, "Boy praised for tying shoe of Honor Guard member during Texas Fourth of July parade," 6 July 2019 Banks in recent years have tripped over each other to lure big spenders with ever more generous rewards. David Benoit, WSJ, "Sapphire Reserve Strains JPMorgan’s Ties With United Airlines," 27 June 2019 Excessive air conditioner usage is tripping power lines, leaving people without any way to cool down in the sweltering heat. Ananya Bhattacharya, Quartz India, "Indian startups are helping their staff stay cool as temperatures hit record highs," 17 June 2019 On top of it all, the UglyDolls star almost tripped while making her grand entrance, but hilariously recovered. Blair Donovan, Country Living, "Wait, Why Was There So Much Drama Around Kelly Clarkson at the Indy 500?," 28 May 2019 Tiny ripples in reality, caused by colliding black holes, have tripped sensors in highly sensitive instruments buried underground on Earth. Devin Powell, Discover Magazine, "How to Understand Einstein's Theory of Gravity," 24 May 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The absence of cornerback Jimmy Smith (knee sprain), as well as slot cornerback Tavon Young’s season-ending neck injury, looms ominously ahead of next week’s trip to Arrowhead Stadium. Jonas Shaffer,, "In another historic performance, Lamar Jackson fuses old and new to power Ravens’ 23-17 win vs. Cardinals," 16 Sep. 2019 Director Sandy Shinner’s vision of Bari experiencing a post-seizure euphoria along the lines of a hard drug trip makes perfect sense in the context of the script. Jerald Pierce,, "Shattered Globe’s ‘Be Here Now’: Can happiness be real if it’s caused by a brain tumor?," 16 Sep. 2019 Crandall and his girlfriend posted photos on Instagram of trips to Laos, Thailand, Singapore, kayaking and partying. Washington Post, "The rise and fall of an Eagle Scout’s deadly fentanyl empire," 15 Sep. 2019 The Sacred Valley section of the trip was my favorite. Vogue, "How Ed Droste Spent Two Wild Weeks in Peru," 14 Sep. 2019 Much of Hansman’s trip is a meditation not on the beguiling beauty of the American West but on how every corner of the United States is now touched by development. Max Holleran, The New Republic, "The Water Wars Are Here," 13 Sep. 2019 The Padres boarded a plane to Denver for the start of a seven-game trip. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Darvish, Cubs strike out Padres’ chances of winning series," 12 Sep. 2019 By far, the unexpected highlight of the trip was the Eastern State Penitentiary. Sara M Moniuszko, USA TODAY, "5 things to do on your first trip to Philadelphia beyond the Liberty Bell," 12 Sep. 2019 After Alabama practiced indoors Wednesday, Nick Saban will meet with the press ahead of the Saturday trip to South Carolina. Michael Casagrande |, al, "What Nick Saban said about South Carolina, former star recruit not practicing," 11 Sep. 2019

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 3a


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 5

History and Etymology for trip


Middle English trippen, from Anglo-French treper, triper, of Germanic origin; akin to Old English treppan to tread — more at trap

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about trip

Statistics for trip

Last Updated

13 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for trip

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for trip



English Language Learners Definition of trip

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to hit your foot against something while you are walking or running so that you fall or almost fall
: to cause (someone who is walking or running) to fall or almost fall
literary : to dance or walk with light, quick steps



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

: a journey to a place
: a short journey to a store, business, office, etc., for a particular purpose
informal : the experience of strange mental effects (such as seeing things that are not real) that is produced by taking a very powerful drug (such as LSD)


\ ˈtrip How to pronounce trip (audio) \
tripped; tripping

Kids Definition of trip

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to catch the foot against something so as to stumble : cause to stumble
2 : to make or cause to make a mistake Their tricky questions tripped us up.
3 : to move (as in dancing) with light quick steps She tripped lightly around the room.
4 : to release (as a spring) by moving a catch



Kids Definition of trip (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an instance of traveling from one place to another a trip to Europe
2 : a brief errand having a certain aim or being more or less regular a trip to the dentist
3 : the action of releasing something mechanically
4 : a device for releasing something by tripping a mechanism

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on trip

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for trip

Spanish Central: Translation of trip

Nglish: Translation of trip for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of trip for Arabic Speakers

Comments on trip

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


friendly or mild

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Where in the World? A Quiz

  • peter bruegel tower of babel painting
  • What language does pajama come from?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Dictionary Devil

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!