vacation

noun, often attributive
va·​ca·​tion | \ vā-ˈkā-shən How to pronounce vacation (audio) , və-\

Definition of vacation

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a period spent away from home or business in travel or recreation had a restful vacation at the beach
2a : a scheduled period during which activity (as of a court or school) is suspended
b : a period of exemption from work granted to an employee
3 : a respite or a time of respite from something : intermission
4 : an act or an instance of vacating

vacation

verb
vacationed; vacationing\ vā-​ˈkā-​sh(ə-​)niŋ How to pronounce vacationing (audio) , və-​ \

Definition of vacation (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to take or spend a vacation vacationed at the shore

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Other Words from vacation

Verb

vacationer \ vā-​ˈkā-​sh(ə-​)nər How to pronounce vacationer (audio) , və-​ \ noun

Synonyms for vacation

Synonyms: Noun

break, holiday [chiefly British], hols [British], leave, recess

Synonyms: Verb

holiday

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Examples of vacation in a Sentence

Noun

Family vacations were a high point in my childhood. When are you taking vacation this year? Employees are entitled to 120 hours of paid vacation. I don't have any vacation days left. We have a one-week vacation in February. The university will be closed for Christmas vacation.

Verb

hoping to vacation in Spain this summer
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

But 100 miles away, on Grand Bahama Island and the Abaco islands, many smaller hotels and vacation rentals were damaged or destroyed. Washington Post, "Tourist-dependent Bahamas says it’s still open for business," 9 Sep. 2019 Something similar on Winni would go for at least $400, according to a quick scan of our vacation rental website. Diane Bairand Pamela Wright, BostonGlobe.com, "Welcome to the Lake Winnipesaukee of the South," 4 Sep. 2019 After Labor Day, prices for hotel rooms and vacation rentals plummet (along with the temperatures, but in September, the average daytime high is still 71 degrees). Christopher Elliott, USA TODAY, "Head to the water: A guide to traveling with kids to the beach, river or lake," 29 Aug. 2019 With so much uncertainty as to where Dorian will strike, a number of resort cities and vacation destinations sit in the storm's possible path. Justin L. Mack, Indianapolis Star, "Hurricane Dorian: Forecasts for Florida vacation spots," 29 Aug. 2019 Those two emails were hours apart, and British Airways didn't fix the error before a number of travelers had already bought new flights or canceled their vacation plans. Louis Cheslaw, Condé Nast Traveler, "We Sorted Through All the Confusion Around British Airways' Flight Cancellations," 26 Aug. 2019 German helicopter operator Rotorflug confirmed one of its aircraft had crashed on the island, a popular vacation destination for Europeans, CNN affiliate RTL reported. Theresa Waldrop, CNN, "7 dead after small plane and helicopter collide on Spanish Mallorca," 25 Aug. 2019 As far as vacation destinations go, Greenland probably hasn’t been at the top of people's lists — but new evidence shows that may be changing. Alyssa Newcomb, NBC News, "All that talk about Greenland has led to a triple-digit spike in tourism searches," 23 Aug. 2019 Built in 1894 for the Quanah, Acme and Pacific railroad, this unique vacation rental might appeal to history buffs. Darla Guillen Gilthorpe, Houston Chronicle, "Make your short Texas getaways memorable by booking a unique rental, from a house boat to a prison," 23 Aug. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The 61-year-old Palm Beach resident oversaw multimillion-dollar real estate projects, vacationed on his island property on Nantucket, Massachusetts, and enjoyed life aboard a 150-foot yacht. Dave Collins, courant.com, "Taxpayers will foot legal bills for once wealthy and politically connected developer," 3 Sep. 2019 Sunday traffic on State Road A1A through Cape Canaveral and Cocoa Beach was with a purpose other than vacationing. Kevin Spear, orlandosentinel.com, "Hurricane Dorian wrecks Labor Day break at Cocoa Beach and Cape Canaveral," 1 Sep. 2019 Steve and Marjorie recently celebrated their 12th anniversary in early June and have been vacationing all over the world with their kids (including Lori Harvey). Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "Steve Harvey Lays Down the "Truth” About His Marriage on His Wife Marjorie’s Instagram," 16 Aug. 2019 For several years, Gyllenhaal’s parents, Naomi Foner and Stephen Gyllenhaal, owned a house on the Vineyard, and his family spent many a summer vacationing around Cape Cod. Isaac Feldberg, BostonGlobe.com, "Jake Gyllenhaal took French model girlfriend to Martha’s Vineyard," 11 Aug. 2019 The place fills up quickly: crowds of diners ranged from singles at the bar to vacationing families and couples celebrating birthdays and anniversaries. Christina Tkacik, baltimoresun.com, "Ocean City’s Shark on the Harbor puts the focus on Maryland seafood and produce," 8 Aug. 2019 Every cat is different, and not all will enjoy vacationing. Special To The Washington Post, The Denver Post, "What happened when we took our cats on a beach vacation," 8 Aug. 2019 For generations, families vacationing inside Yosemite National Park stayed at the Ahwahnee Hotel, the Wawona, Badger Pass Ski Area and Camp Curry. Jason Daley, Smithsonian, "Yosemite Gets Its Historic Place Names Back," 17 July 2019 Buzz60 Planning on vacationing somewhere for the long Fourth of July weekend? Hannah Yasharoff, USA TODAY, "Here's when NOT to hit the road for a Fourth of July trip," 1 July 2019

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

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3

Verb

1883, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for vacation

Noun

Middle English vacacioun, borrowed from Anglo-French vacacion, borrowed from Latin vacātiōn-, vacātiō "exemption from service, respite from work," from vacāre "to be empty, be free, have leisure" + -tiōn-, -tiō, suffix of action nouns — more at vacant

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More Definitions for vacation

vacation

noun

English Language Learners Definition of vacation

 (Entry 1 of 2)

US : a period of time that a person spends away from home, school, or business usually in order to relax or travel
chiefly US : the number of days or hours per year for which an employer agrees to pay workers while they are not working
US : a time when schools, colleges, and universities are closed

vacation

verb

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

US : to go somewhere during a vacation

vacation

noun
va·​ca·​tion | \ vā-ˈkā-shən How to pronounce vacation (audio) \

Kids Definition of vacation

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a period during which activity (as of a school) is stopped for a time
2 : a period spent away from home or business in travel or amusement

vacation

verb
vacationed; vacationing

Kids Definition of vacation (Entry 2 of 2)

: to take or spend a period away from home or business in travel or amusement

Other Words from vacation

vacationer noun

vacation

noun
va·​ca·​tion

Legal Definition of vacation

1 : a period in which activity or work is suspended specifically : an interval between judicial terms
2 : an act or instance of vacating vacation of a judgment

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Comments on vacation

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