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

She was transferred to Florida while working with AT&T, living outside Orlando and often hosting family members on vacation. courant.com, "Gloria M. Gill," 10 Aug. 2019 The Cambridge family has officially returned from vacation (reportedly in Mustique) and is back to royal duties across the pond. Abby Gardner, Glamour, "Of Course Prince George and Princess Charlotte Were Adorable at Kate Middleton and Prince William's Sailing Race," 8 Aug. 2019 Bradley Cooper was spotted in Italy wearing thick sunscreen on his nose like your dad on vacation. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Bradley Cooper Wore Sunscreen like a Beach Dad in Oprah's Presence," 6 Aug. 2019 After a long day of sightseeing or adventuring on vacation, there's no greater pleasure than returning to an inviting pool to float dreamily (preferably happy hour cocktail in hand). Hadley Keller, House Beautiful, "This Hotel's Spa Is Like a Water Park for Adults," 5 Aug. 2019 Madigan said Budish did not immediately respond to Russo on Wednesday because Budish is on vacation. Courtney Astolfi, cleveland.com, "Cuyahoga County administrative judge says the court is ‘astounded’ by Armond Budish’s failure to include judges in sheriff-selection," 1 Aug. 2019 It was considered likely that the numbers would go down for CNN, considering the NBC debate was shown on both broadcast and cable networks and took place at a time that fewer people were on vacation. David Bauder, Fortune, "Nearly 8.7 Million People Watched First Night of Live Democratic Debate on CNN," 31 July 2019 The makeup mogul just returned from a whirlwind vacation for the last month with some of her best friends hanging out on yachts, playing tennis, and taking tasteful nudes wearing nary a thing other than a hat. Amanda Mitchell, Allure, "Kylie Jenner’s Post-Vacation Lob Is Making Us Consider a Haircut," 29 July 2019 Rosselló flies back to Puerto Rico from a European vacation and holds a news conference to address the arrests of the people with government links. Washington Post, "Timeline in controversy surrounding Puerto Rico governor," 25 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Meanwhile, Sanders was vacationing in London, with plans to hit Paris and Amsterdam, like some college kid on a backpacking. Mitch Albom, Detroit Free Press, "Mitch Albom: Barry Sanders retirement a bombshell we should have saw coming," 21 July 2019 The official cause of death for a Fort Worth husband and wife vacationing in Fiji remains a mystery after a preliminary finding ruled out infectious disease. Loyd Brumfield, Dallas News, "Fort Worth couple vacationing in Fiji didn't die of infectious disease, tests indicate," 22 June 2019 Kenner was also a close friend of its editor, vacationing with William Buckley on the ski slopes of Switzerland and sailing with him in New England waters and the Caribbean. Michael Dirda, National Review, "The Exhilarating Letters of Guy Davenport and Hugh Kenner," 25 July 2019 Authorities reported the girl who was bitten on her heel and ankle was vacationing from South Florida. Richard Tribou, orlandosentinel.com, "Florida girl on boogie board bitten by shark: report," 13 July 2019 The rumors began circling when the couple was photographed while vacationing in Saint Tropez on Monday. Carolyn Twersky, Seventeen, "Fans Think Cara Delevingne and Ashley Benson Got Engaged and They're Freaking Out," 10 July 2019 There, African-Americans are encouraged to browse through countries and see black travelers vacationing across Africa. Haleluya Hadero, Quartz Africa, "A “Go Back to Africa” media campaign uses AI to boost African American tourism," 9 July 2019 Perhaps an everyday occurrence for a first responder, but the newlywed couple from Mississippi vacationing in Perdido Key have the utmost gratitude for this brave act. Perri Ormont Blumberg, Southern Living, "How Perdido Key Beach Community Is Recovering After Massive Condo Fire," 27 June 2019 While vacationing on the coast of Spain in 2012, the computer vision scientist Antonio Torralba noticed stray shadows on the wall of his hotel room that didn’t seem to have been cast by anything. Quanta Magazine, "The New Science of Seeing Around Corners," 30 Aug. 2018

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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