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Travelling vs Traveling – What’s the Difference?

Travelling vs Traveling – Did you ever wonder what is the difference between the two? Everyone knows the spelling of travel. It is very easy and simple. But can you say the same for the verb forms of travel? Is it traveler or traveller? Is it traveling or travelling?

It is highly confusing when you see two spellings of the same word. Differentiating between the two becomes difficult! So, in this article on travelling vs traveling, we will try to understand the difference between the two.

Travelling vs Traveling – Understanding the Difference

Both these words are present participle form of the word ‘travel.’ The meaning of the word is to make a journey. Both the words – traveling, and travelling are the same. Traveling is used in American English and travelling is used in British English.

You need to choose the spelling depending on your target audience. Other forms of the word travel such as ‘traveler’ or ‘traveled’ also have these differences in spellings in these two countries.

In British English, travelling, traveller, and travelled are in usage.  In American English, traveling, traveler, and traveled are in usage.

If you have any problem remembering which one is correct in which country, here’s a tip for you. American English words are usually smaller than British English words.

American English words are mostly used in the United States of America. Many of the countries in the world like Canada, Australia, etc. still use British English words. Basically, the difference in spellings is a variation of the dialects. None of the spelling is wrong.

In case you are wondering where these differences came from, there is only one man who is responsible for this. His name is Noah Webster who is famous for Merriam-Webster dictionary.

He was a lexicographer and a linguist (and a lot more things). He was one of the few people who influenced American English to a great extent. He used shorter versions of the words and inserted them in his dictionary. Overtime, these words stuck with Americans whereas others in different parts of the world still used longer versions of the words.

Just a Fun Fact

Did you know there are 26 spellings proposed by Noah Websters that did not catch up? Here is a quick table for those 26 words:

British SpellingsNoah’s Proposed Spellings
CloakCloke
SoupSoop
MachineMasheen
TongueTung
GriefGreef
DaughterDawter
ChorusKorus
NightmareNightmar
TurnipTurnep
IslandIland
PorpoisePorpess
SteadySteddy
HeinousHainous
ThumbThum
GuillotineGillotin
SpongeSpunge
AcheAke
WomenWimmin
DetermineDetermin
GiveGiv
BuiltBilt
BelieveBeleev
GrotesqueGrotesk
StyleStile
NearNeer
SleighSley

As said earlier, you need to choose the spelling thinking about your audience. If you are in Canada and are applying for a job in the US, you must choose “travel”. But, if you are an American and you are applying for a job or some university elsewhere in the world, it is better to go with the longer spelling “travelling”.

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Examples of Travelling vs Traveling

1. Will you be travelling/traveling with John this weekend?

2. Travelling/travelling is lot more fun when a group accompanies you.

3. My sister loves travelling/traveling but my brother likes to stay in the comfort of our home.

4. Sarah and Mark love travelling/traveling. They go on journeys at least twice a year.

5. Will is not at home. He is travelling/traveling with his boss to Moscow to get a trade deal done.

Other examples which include traveler/traveller and travelled/traveled.

1. I have travelled/traveled across the length and breadth of this country.

2. Jessica has travelled/traveled 48 states of the United States of America.

3. Historic places attract a lot of travellers/travelers across the globe.

4. Airports can handle several travellers/travelers at once.

Image Credit – Pixabay

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