#241: 26 Must-Have English Phrasal Verbs for Travel

Jun 1, 2022 | Advanced Vocabulary, Phrasal Verbs

What is the right way or the best way to learn English phrasal verbs?

The answer is simple. Themes.

Just like the theme of “travel” for this lesson phrasal verb lesson.

The reason themes work is you’re going to learn phrasal verbs that are regularly used in spoken and written communication on that topic. 

With a theme like travel, for example, this means you’ll hear the same phrasal verbs again and again when your coworkers talk about their vacation plans.

You’ll hear them and see them when you’re planning your trip (if you’re doing research in English). 

And they’ll be used when people ask about your travel plans and you tell your travel stories. 

That repetition is the key to learning and remembering. Plus, when you choose a theme that is applicable to your life, you’re more likely to use those phrasal verbs regularly.

So let’s dive into 26 Must-Have English Phrasal Verbs for Travel.

To help you and I stay organized and have clearer topics (since travel is such a large theme), I’ve divided this into 5 parts or subtopics.

  • Part 1 – Phrasal Verbs to Use When Booking/Planning Your Trip
  • Part 2 – Phrasal Verbs When Using Transportation
  • Part 4 – Phrasal Verbs for the Hotel/Airport
  • Part 5 – Phrasal Verbs When At Your Destination


26 Must-Have English Phrasal Verbs for Travel

Part 1 – Phrasal Verbs to Use When Booking/Planning Your Trip

Get away – To leave and go somewhere for a break or holiday

  • Ex. “You need to get away for a few weeks and recharge your batteries.

Dream of – To think about or wish for something you want very much

  • Ex. “I’m dreaming of going to the beach this summer. I just want to relax and enjoy the waves.” 

Sock away – To save money by putting it in a bank or investing it

  • Ex. “In the past year alone, he had socked away enough for a trip to Portugal.”

Rack up – To gradually accumulate a large number or points, profits, etc. 

  • Ex. “I managed to rack up enough airlines points for a free trip.”

Hook up – To get someone in contact with another or to successfully get something they need

  • Ex. “Our travel agent hooked us up with first class tickets for our journey back to the States.”

Hiked up (prices/cost) – To increase or raise the cost of something

  • Ex. “Due to fuel and staff shortages, airlines have hiked up the cost of airfare.”

Figure out (plans) – To solve a problem or discover the answer to a question

  • Ex. “We figured out a great way to explore Europe on a budget.”

Look forward – To positively anticipate a future event

  • Ex. “My husband is looking forward to next month’s vacation.”

Fall through (past tense) – To come to nothing or fail

  • Ex. “Our travel plans fell through due to a family emergency.”


Part 2 – Phrasal Verbs for Transportation

Get into – To enter a car

  • Ex. “We got into the car and drove to the nearest hotel.”

Get off – To exit a bus, train, or plane

  • Ex. “We got off the plane an hour ago, but got held up with finding our luggage.”

Get on – To enter, or board, a bus, train, or plane

  • Ex. “When the gates are closed, we can no longer get on the plane.”

Back up – To move in the reverse direction

  • Ex. “Could you help me? I need help with backing up the van.”

However, it also means to accumulate due to disruption of flow.

  • Ex. “The traffic is starting to back up in this lane.”

Pull up – To bring a vehicle to a stop (often a car).

  • Ex. “The car pulled up by the passenger pick-up area.”

Pick up – To go someplace to get someone and provide them with transportation

  • Ex. “Monica needs to pick Chandler up from the airport today.”

Hold up – To be delayed by something

  • Ex. “Sorry, we got held up by traffic on the way here.”

Drop off – To take someone to a place and leave them there

  • Ex. “Monica needs to drop Chandler off at the airport.”

See off – To be present at a departure area (i.e. bus station, airport terminal, or train station) and say goodbye to someone

  • Ex. “We’ll see you off before your move to Vancouver.”

TIP: Curious about the difference between to get in and to get on? Check out my lesson on English Prepositions of Place: In | At | On

Part 3 – Phrasal Verbs for the Hotel/Airport

Check in – To officially tell someone of one’s arrival at a hotel or airport for a reservation

  • Ex. “Once we’ve checked in at the hotel, we can explore the city.” 

Check out – To leave a place (usually a hotel) by returning accommodation keys and paying outstanding charges

  • Ex. “If guests don’t check out by 3:00 PM, they’ll be charged an additional fee.”

Take off – To leave the ground and begin to ascend

  • Ex. “The plane takes off once passengers have boarded.”

Touch down – To descend the wheels and land on the ground

  • Ex. “Aunt Lola’s plan will touch down at 5:45 PM.”

Part 4 – Phrasal Verbs When At Your Destination

Look around – To explore what is near you in an area 

  • Ex. “Do you wanna look around for a good place to eat?”

Get around – To go or travel to different places

  • Ex. “Despite the gloomy weather, we were able to get around and explore.”

Head for/toward – To begin moving in the direction of a particular place

  • Ex. “We decided to head toward the meeting point.”

Head back – To begin returning to a place

  • Ex. “I think I’ll head back to the hotel; I’m feeling tired.”

After you watch the video on English phrasal verbs for travel, be sure to follow my recommendation for how to best learn and remember phrasal verbs in English.

Choose 2-3 new phrasal verbs from this lesson today.

Use them in your own example sentences.

Then continue to read or learn about the topic of travel in English this week.

You’ll notice the same phrasal verbs time and time again.

When you encounter a phrasal verb from this list, look at how it is used. This will help you know how to use the phrasal verb in different sentences.

Be sure to share some of your examples with me as well. You can do that in the comment section below.

~ Annemarie


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