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You are not alone in this spelling debate, in fact “traveling versus travelling” is a very popular Google search (so save your embarrassment for something more worthy). So here is what we want to know - do traveling and travelling have the same meaning? Which do I use when? Help!
By Chelsea Sauvé | June 19th, 2019
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Spelling and grammar lessons - the favourite subject of many, the dreaded subject of others! Personally, I tend to love a good crossword, but I know for many they are avoided like the plague (sort of akin to my avoidance of Sudoku - ahhh). This blog piece is an ode to that time in life when you learned the difference between you’re and your. And who can forget the distinction between there, their, and they’re? Oh and don’t even get me started on “i” before “e” unless after “c”.
And now ... now there is traveling and travelling, traveler and traveller. But fret not, we’re here to save you from your grammar woes.
The root of both words is travel - one of my personal favourites. Travel is a verb meaning “to go from one place to another, as on a trip or journey”. And so, the active voice remains just that - a verb!
Yes, that’s right. Don’t sweat it, both traveling and travelling mean the exact same thing. Although it turns out that travelling is used much more frequently than traveling - in a review of British English books, journals, and magazines from 1800 to 2008, travelling was used 4:1. But those were British books, meaning that this statistic will make more sense once you’ve read the next bullet point….
So it turns out that traveling and travelling are identical in meaning and the difference is purely dialectical (meaning that which one you use depends upon which dialect of English you subscribe to - did you grow up in an American school? British school?). So geography and audience dictate which one you use - writing for an American audience? Traveling is your friend. Writing for a Canadian/British/Australian? Travelling is your go to.
(we know these monkeys are irrelevant, but they hold hands like we want everyone in the world to - Wandure is a kumbaya kind of team).
Now you can add traveling and travelling to your list of differences between American and Canadian spelling - similar to colour and flavour for Canadians and color and flavor for Americans.
You always get an A+ from Wandure, but seriously - you can’t go wrong. So leave the self-doubt at the door and write to your heart’s content.
Whether you’re traveling or travelling, make sure you’re wandure-ing.