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Difference between TRAVEL, TRIP, and JOURNEY

Trip (n.)

The act of going to another place (often for a short period of time) and returning.

  • We took a five-day trip to the Amazon.
  • You’re back from vacation! How was your trip?
  • I went on business trips to Switzerland and Germany last month.

Use the verbs “take” and “go on” with trip.

  • A round-trip ticket is a ticket for going and coming back.
  • A one-way ticket is only for going.

Travel (v.)

Going to another place (in general).

  • I really like to travel.
  • He travels frequently for work.
  • My sister is currently traveling through South America.

Travel (n.) can be used to describe the act of traveling in general:

  • Travel in that region of the country is dangerous.
  • World travel gives you a new perspective.

Incorrect uses of travel:

  • How was your travel?
    How was your trip?
  • I’m planning a travel to the U.S. next year.
    I’m planning to travel to the U.S. next year.
    I’m planning a trip to the U.S. next year.

Journey (n.)

One piece of travel (going from one place to another) – usually a long distance.

  • The journey takes 3 hours by plane or 28 hours by bus.
  • He made the 200-mile journey by bike.
  • “A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step” - Lao-tze, Tao Te Ching

We can also use journey in a more “metaphorical” way to talk about progress in life:

  • He has overcome a lot of problems on his spiritual journey.
  • My uncle is an alcoholic, but he’s beginning the journey of recovery.


Quiz: Travel, Trip, or Journey

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