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Friend vs. Companion: Know the Difference

Shumaila Saeed
By Shumaila Saeed || Updated on December 27, 2023
A friend is someone with whom you share a bond of mutual affection, typically exclusive of sexual or family relations. A companion is someone who accompanies you, often for companionship or convenience.
Friend vs. Companion

Key Differences

A friend is someone with whom you have an emotional bond, often including shared experiences and trust. A companion, on the other hand, can simply be someone who accompanies you, without the necessity of a deep emotional connection.
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Friendship is built on personal relationships that involve mutual care and support. Companionship can be more situational, based on the need for company or assistance in a particular circumstance.
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Friends often have a deep understanding of each other, sharing secrets and personal thoughts. Companions might not share this level of intimacy, as their relationship can be more about practicality or convenience.
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Dec 27, 2023
Friendships can last a lifetime and involve a significant emotional investment. Companionship can be temporary and based on specific contexts, like travel or attending an event together.
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In a friendship, there are often unspoken expectations of loyalty, support, and understanding. In companionship, the expectations are generally more about presence and participation in a shared activity.
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Comparison Chart

Emotional Bond

Strong mutual affection and emotional connection
May or may not have emotional connection
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Purpose

Personal relationship, support, and understanding
Accompaniment, convenience, or practicality
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Depth

Deep understanding and shared experiences
Relationship can be superficial or situational
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Duration

Often long-term and enduring
Can be temporary or for a specific context
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Expectations

Loyalty, support, and shared values
Company and participation in activities
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Friend and Companion Definitions

Friend

A person who is not hostile.
He greeted everyone in the room as a friend.
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Companion

Someone who accompanies you.
She found a travel companion for her trip to Italy.
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Friend

A person whom one knows, likes, and trusts.
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Companion

An associate in a task or journey.
The novelist mentioned his companion during his research.
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Friend

A person whom one knows; an acquaintance.
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Companion

A person who provides company.
His dog has been his faithful companion for years.
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Friend

A person with whom one is allied in a struggle or cause; a comrade.
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Oct 19, 2023

Companion

A person who accompanies or associates with another; a comrade.
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Oct 19, 2023

Friend

One who supports, sympathizes with, or patronizes a group, cause, or movement
Friends of the clean air movement.
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Companion

A domestic partner.
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Friend

Friend A member of the Society of Friends; a Quaker.
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Companion

A person employed to assist, live with, or travel with another.
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Friend

(Informal) To add (someone) as a friend on a social networking website.
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Companion

One of a pair or set of things; a mate.
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Friend

(Archaic) To befriend.
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Companion

A companionway.
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Friend

A person, typically someone other than a family member, spouse or lover, whose company one enjoys and towards whom one feels affection.
John and I have been friends ever since we were roommates at college.
Trust is important between friends.
I used to find it hard to make friends when I was shy.
We became friends in the war and remain friends to this day.
We were friends with some girls from the other school and stayed friends with them.
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Companion

To be a companion to; accompany.
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Friend

An associate who provides assistance.
The Automobile Association is every motorist's friend.
The police is every law-abiding citizen's friend.
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Companion

A friend, acquaintance, or partner; someone with whom one spends time or accompanies
His dog has been his trusted companion for the last five years.
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Friend

A person with whom one is vaguely or indirectly acquainted.
A friend of a friend;
I added him as a friend on Facebook, but I hardly know
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Companion

(dated) A person employed to accompany or travel with another.
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Friend

A person who backs or supports something.
I’m not a friend of cheap wine.
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Companion

(nautical) The framework on the quarterdeck of a sailing ship through which daylight entered the cabins below.
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Friend

(informal) An object or idea that can be used for good.
Fruit is your friend.
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Companion

(nautical) The covering of a hatchway on an upper deck which leads to the companionway; the stairs themselves.
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Friend

Used as a form of address when warning someone.
You’d better watch it, friend.
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Companion

(topology) A knot in whose neighborhood another, specified knot meets every meridian disk.
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Friend

(object-oriented programming) A function or class granted special access to the private and protected members of another class.
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Companion

(figuratively) A thing or phenomenon that is closely associated with another thing, phenomenon, or person.
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Friend

(climbing) A spring-loaded camming device.
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Companion

(attributive) An appended source of media or information, designed to be used in conjunction with and to enhance the main material.
The companion guide gives an in-depth analysis of this particular translation.
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Friend

(euphemistic) A lover; a boyfriend or girlfriend.
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Companion

(astronomy) A celestial object that is associated with another.
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Friend

A relative, a relation by blood or marriage.
Friends agree best at a distance.
Make friends of framet folk.
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Companion

A knight of the lowest rank in certain orders.
A companion of the Bath
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Friend

To act as a friend to, to befriend; to be friendly to, to help.
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Companion

A fellow; a rogue.
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Friend

(transitive) To add (a person) to a list of friends on a social networking site; to officially designate (someone) as a friend.
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Companion

(obsolete) To be a companion to; to attend on; to accompany.
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Friend

One who entertains for another such sentiments of esteem, respect, and affection that he seeks his society and welfare; a wellwisher; an intimate associate; sometimes, an attendant.
Want gives to know the flatterer from the friend.
A friend that sticketh closer than a brother.
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Companion

(obsolete) To qualify as a companion; to make equal.
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Friend

One not inimical or hostile; one not a foe or enemy; also, one of the same nation, party, kin, etc., whose friendly feelings may be assumed. The word is some times used as a term of friendly address.
Friend, how camest thou in hither?
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Companion

One who accompanies or is in company with another for a longer or shorter period, either from choice or casually; one who is much in the company of, or is associated with, another or others; an associate; a comrade; a consort; a partner.
The companions of his fall.
The companion of fools shall smart for it.
Here are your sons again; and I must loseTwo of the sweetest companions in the world.
A companion is one with whom we share our bread; a messmate.
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Friend

One who looks propitiously on a cause, an institution, a project, and the like; a favorer; a promoter; as, a friend to commerce, to poetry, to an institution.
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Companion

A knight of the lowest rank in certain orders; as, a companion of the Bath.
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Friend

One of a religious sect characterized by disuse of outward rites and an ordained ministry, by simplicity of dress and speech, and esp. by opposition to war and a desire to live at peace with all men. They are popularly called Quakers.
America was first visited by Friends in 1656.
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Companion

A fellow; - in contempt.
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Friend

A paramour of either sex.
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Companion

A skylight on an upper deck with frames and sashes of various shapes, to admit light to a cabin or lower deck.
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Friend

To act as the friend of; to favor; to countenance; to befriend.
Fortune friends the bold.
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Companion

To be a companion to; to attend on; to accompany.
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Friend

A person you know well and regard with affection and trust;
He was my best friend at the university
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Companion

To qualify as a companion; to make equal.
Companion me with my mistress.
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Friend

An associate who provides assistance;
He's a good ally in fight
They were friends of the workers
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Companion

A person who is frequently in the company of another;
Drinking companions
Comrades in arms
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Friend

A person with whom you are acquainted;
I have trouble remembering the names of all my acquaintances
We are friends of the family
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Companion

A traveler who accompanies you
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Friend

A person who backs a politician or a team etc.;
All their supporters came out for the game
They are friends of the library
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Companion

One paid to accompany or assist or live with another
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Friend

A member of the Religious Society of Friends founded by George Fox (the Friends have never called themselves Quakers)
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Companion

Be a companion to somebody
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Friend

Someone you trust and share a bond with.
My best friend and I have known each other since childhood.
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Companion

A partner in a specific activity.
I need a gym companion to stay motivated.
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Friend

A person with whom you share mutual affection.
She is not just a colleague; she's a true friend.
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Companion

Someone who shares your experiences.
As my companion in the adventure, we shared many memories.
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Friend

An ally or supporter in various contexts.
In times of trouble, a friend is someone who stands by you.
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Friend

Someone you enjoy spending time with.
Going to the movies with a friend is always fun.
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Repeatedly Asked Queries

What defines a companion?

A companion is someone who accompanies you, often for company or assistance.
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Dec 27, 2023

Do friends have to spend a lot of time together?

Not necessarily, friendships can endure even with infrequent contact.
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Is a friend always a companion?

Often, but not necessarily in all situations.
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What defines a friend?

A friend is defined by mutual affection and a personal bond.
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What is the main difference between a friend and a companion?

The main difference lies in the emotional bond; it's typically stronger with friends.
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Can pets be considered companions?

Yes, pets are often regarded as companions.
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Can family members be friends?

Yes, family members can also be considered friends.
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Is trust more important in friendship than companionship?

Typically, yes, as friendships often involve a deeper emotional connection.
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What role does loyalty play in friendship compared to companionship?

Loyalty is a key component of friendship, less so in casual companionship.
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How do social media platforms impact friendships and companionships?

They can enhance both by facilitating connections and interactions.
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Can a companion become a friend?

Yes, companions can develop into friends over time.
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Is it common to have more companions than friends?

Yes, as companions can be situational, while friends are usually fewer but closer.
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Do companions share personal information like friends do?

Not necessarily, as the level of intimacy may differ.
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Is companionship more about convenience?

It can be, especially in situations like travel or specific activities.
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Can online friends be considered real friends?

Yes, if there's mutual affection and understanding.
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Can working relationships evolve into friendships?

Yes, colleagues can become friends over time.
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What makes a friendship lasting and strong?

Mutual respect, understanding, and shared experiences.
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Is it easier to find a companion than a friend?

Often, as companionship can be more about shared activities than emotional bonds.
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Dec 27, 2023

Do friendships require more maintenance than companionships?

Generally, yes, due to the deeper emotional connection involved.
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How does companionship benefit mental health?

It provides social interaction and can reduce feelings of loneliness.
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About Author
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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