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Aeroplane vs. Airplane: Know the Difference

Shumaila Saeed
By Shumaila Saeed || Updated on December 25, 2023
Aeroplane and airplane refer to the same flying vehicle, with "aeroplane" primarily used in British English and "airplane" in American English.
Aeroplane vs. Airplane

Key Differences

The word "aeroplane" is commonly used in British English to denote a powered flying vehicle with fixed wings. In contrast, "airplane" is the term predominantly used in American English for the same type of vehicle. Both terms describe an aircraft capable of flight using its wings and an engine.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 07, 2023
Historically, "aeroplane" derives from the Greek words "aēr" meaning air and "planos" meaning wandering. "Airplane," on the other hand, is a variation that became prevalent in the United States, simplifying the term by replacing "aero" with "air." Despite these linguistic origins, both terms effectively communicate the concept of a winged, powered aircraft.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 07, 2023
In technical and aviation contexts, "aeroplane" and "airplane" are interchangeable, with no difference in their technical definition. They both describe a vehicle designed for air travel that has wings and one or more engines. The choice between the two terms typically depends on the regional dialect of English being spoken.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 07, 2023
In literature and media, "aeroplane" is more likely to be encountered in publications or broadcasts originating from the United Kingdom or Commonwealth countries. Conversely, "airplane" is the preferred term in American books, movies, and news. This distinction in usage underscores the cultural and linguistic diversity within the English language.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 07, 2023
In everyday communication, English speakers often choose "aeroplane" or "airplane" based on their geographical location or cultural influence. While British English favors "aeroplane," American English leans towards "airplane." However, both terms are universally understood and accepted in the global context.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 07, 2023
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Comparison Chart

Usage

Predominantly in British English
Commonly used in American English
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Dec 07, 2023

Etymology

Greek origins ("aēr" + "planos")
Simplified form in American English
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Dec 07, 2023

Regional Preference

UK, Australia, and other Commonwealth nations
United States
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 07, 2023

Linguistic Variation

Part of the diversity in English dialects
Reflects American English simplification
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Dec 07, 2023

Understanding

Universally understood in English-speaking countries
Likewise universally understood
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Dec 07, 2023
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Aeroplane and Airplane Definitions

Aeroplane

An aircraft capable of atmospheric flight due to its wing structure.
We watched as the aeroplane performed acrobatic maneuvers.
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Nov 24, 2023

Airplane

An aircraft with a fixed wing and powered flight capabilities.
She always dreamed of piloting an airplane.
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Nov 24, 2023

Aeroplane

A winged mode of transport that carries passengers and cargo.
The aeroplane was loaded with cargo for international delivery.
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Nov 24, 2023

Airplane

A vehicle used for air travel, with wings and one or more engines.
The emergency landing of the airplane was a success.
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Nov 24, 2023

Aeroplane

A vehicle designed for air travel, using engines to propel it forward.
The pilot expertly landed the aeroplane.
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Nov 24, 2023
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Airplane

A winged vehicle propelled through the air by engines.
The airplane took off smoothly from the runway.
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Nov 24, 2023

Aeroplane

A powered flying vehicle with fixed wings.
The aeroplane soared above the clouds.
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Nov 24, 2023

Airplane

A mode of transport that flies in the sky, carrying people or goods.
The cargo airplane delivered supplies across the ocean.
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Nov 24, 2023

Aeroplane

A machine capable of atmospheric flight, heavier than air.
The aeroplane's engines roared to life on the runway.
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Nov 24, 2023

Airplane

A heavier-than-air flying machine with engine-driven propulsion.
The airplane cruised at a high altitude.
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Nov 24, 2023

Aeroplane

Variant of airplane.
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Oct 19, 2023

Airplane

Any of various winged vehicles capable of flight, generally heavier than air and driven by jet engines or propellers.
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Oct 19, 2023

Aeroplane

A powered heavier-than-air aircraft with fixed wings.
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Oct 19, 2023

Airplane

A powered heavier-than-air aircraft with fixed wings.
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Oct 19, 2023

Aeroplane

An airfoil.
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Oct 19, 2023

Airplane

(intransitive) To fly in an aeroplane.
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Oct 19, 2023

Aeroplane

Any of various nymphalid butterflies, of various genera, having a slow gliding flight. Also called planes.
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Oct 19, 2023

Airplane

(transitive) To transport by aeroplane.
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Oct 19, 2023

Aeroplane

(intransitive) To fly in an aeroplane.
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Oct 19, 2023

Airplane

A heavier-than-air aircraft. Same as aeroplane{2}.
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Oct 19, 2023

Aeroplane

(transitive) To transport by aeroplane.
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Oct 19, 2023

Airplane

An aircraft that has a fixed wing and is powered by propellers or jets;
The flight was delayed due to trouble with the airplane
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Oct 19, 2023

Aeroplane

A light rigid plane used in aërial navigation to oppose sudden upward or downward movement in the air, as in gliding machines; specif., such a plane slightly inclined and driven forward as a lifting device in some flying machines. Also called airfoil.
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Oct 19, 2023

Aeroplane

Hence, a heavier-than-air flying machine using such a device to provide lift. In a modern aeroplane, the airfoils are called the wings, and most of the lift is derived from these surfaces. In contrast to helicopters, the wings are fixed to the passenger compartment (airframe) and do not move relative to the frame; thus such a machine is called a fixed-wing aircraft. These machines are called monoplanes, biplanes, triplanes, or quadruplanes, according to the number of main supporting planes (wings) used in their construction. After 1940 few planes with more than one airfoil were constructed, and these are used by hobbyists or for special purposes. Being heavier than air they depend for their levitation on motion imparted by the thrust from either propellers driven by an engine, or, in a jet plane, by the reaction from a high-velocity stream of gases expelled rearward from a jet engine. They start from the ground by a run on small wheels or runners, and are guided by a steering apparatus consisting of horizontal and vertical movable planes, which usually form part of the wings or tail. There are many varieties of form and construction, which in some cases are known by the names of their inventors. In U.S., an aeroplane is usually called an airplane or plane.
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Oct 19, 2023

Aeroplane

An aircraft that has a fixed wing and is powered by propellers or jets;
The flight was delayed due to trouble with the airplane
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Oct 19, 2023

Repeatedly Asked Queries

Are there any technical differences between aeroplane and airplane?

No, they are technically the same.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 07, 2023

Are aeroplane and airplane the same?

Yes, both terms refer to the same type of aircraft.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 07, 2023

Why are there two different terms, aeroplane and airplane?

It's due to regional differences in English; aeroplane is British, and airplane is American.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 07, 2023

Is the spelling different in other English-speaking countries?

Yes, British-influenced regions often use "aeroplane," while American-influenced regions use "airplane."
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 07, 2023

Will the term I use depend on where I am flying?

It might, as regional airlines tend to use the term common in their area.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 07, 2023

Can I use aeroplane and airplane interchangeably?

Yes, both are understood globally, though regional preferences exist.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 07, 2023

Do any international aviation organizations prefer one term over the other?

International organizations typically accept both terms.
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Dec 07, 2023

Is one term more correct than the other?

No, both are correct; it's a matter of regional language preference.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 07, 2023

Are there any differences in how aeroplane and airplane are used in sentences?

No, they are used similarly in sentences.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 07, 2023

Has the use of these terms changed over time?

Yes, airplane has become more dominant globally, but aeroplane is still widely used.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 07, 2023

Is there a difference in pronunciation between aeroplane and airplane?

Slight variations exist due to accents, but they are minimal.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 07, 2023

Do non-native English speakers use both terms?

Yes, but they might prefer one over the other based on their English education.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 07, 2023

Has the internet influenced the use of these terms?

Yes, the global nature of the internet has led to a broader acceptance and use of both terms.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 07, 2023

Do pilots use both terms?

Yes, pilots use both terms depending on their training and regional influence.
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Dec 07, 2023

Is aeroplane an older term than airplane?

Yes, aeroplane is the original term, with airplane emerging later in American English.
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Dec 07, 2023

Is one term more popular in certain types of aircraft?

No, both terms apply to all types of powered fixed-wing aircraft.
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Dec 07, 2023

Is one term more commonly used in aviation literature?

Aeroplane is more common in British aviation literature, while airplane is more common in American publications.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 07, 2023

Are there any cultural implications in choosing one term over the other?

It can sometimes reflect the speaker's cultural or linguistic background.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 07, 2023

Do these terms appear differently in aviation manuals?

Yes, depending on the country of publication.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 07, 2023

Are aeroplane and airplane used differently in the media?

Yes, media outlets typically use the term common in their region.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 07, 2023

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Shumaila Saeed
Written by
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed, an expert content creator with 6 years of experience, specializes in distilling complex topics into easily digestible comparisons, shining a light on the nuances that both inform and educate readers with clarity and accuracy.

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