1. a slip, usually of paper or cardboard, serving as evidence that the holder has paid a fare or admission or is entitled to some service, right, or the like: a railroad ticket; a theater ticket.
  2. a summons issued for a traffic or parking violation.
  3. a written or printed slip of paper, cardboard, etc., affixed to something to indicate its nature, price, or the like; label or tag.
  4. a slate of candidates nominated by a particular party or faction and running together in an election.
  5. the license of a ship’s officer or of an aviation pilot.
  6. Banking. a preliminary recording of transactions prior to their entry in more permanent books of account.
  7. Informal. the proper or advisable thing: That’s the ticket! Warm milk and toast is just the ticket for you.
  8. Archaic. a placard.
  9. Obsolete. a short note, notice, or memorandum.

verb (used with object)

  1. to attach a ticket to; distinguish by means of a ticket; label.
  2. to furnish with a ticket, as on the railroad.
  3. to serve with a summons for a traffic or parking violation.
  4. to attach such a summons to: to ticket illegally parked cars.


  1. have tickets on oneself, Australian Slang. to be conceited.


    1. a piece of paper, cardboard, etc, showing that the holder is entitled to certain rights, such as travel on a train or bus, entry to a place of public entertainment, etc
    2. (modifier)concerned with or relating to the issue, sale, or checking of ticketsa ticket office; ticket collector
  1. a piece of card, cloth, etc, attached to an article showing information such as its price, size, or washing instructions
  2. a summons served for a parking offence or violation of traffic regulations
  3. informal the certificate of competence issued to a ship’s captain or an aircraft pilot
  4. mainly US and NZ the group of candidates nominated by one party in an election; slate
  5. mainly US the declared policy of a political party at an election
  6. British informal a certificate of discharge from the armed forces
  7. informal the right or appropriate thingthat’s the ticket
  8. have tickets on oneself or have got tickets on oneself Australian informal to be conceited

verb -ets, -eting or -eted (tr)

  1. to issue or attach a ticket or tickets to
  2. informal to earmark for a particular purpose

n.1520s, “short note or document,” from a shortened form of Middle French etiquet “label, note,” from Old French estiquette “a little note” (late 14c.), especially one affixed to a gate or wall as a public notice, from estiquer “to affix, stick on, attach,” from Frankish *stikkan, cognate with Old English stician “to pierce” (see stick (v.)). Meaning “card or piece of paper that gives its holder a right or privilege” is first recorded 1670s, probably developing from the sense of “certificate, license, permit.” The political sense of “list of candidates put forward by a faction” has been used in American English since 1711. Meaning “official notification of offense” is from 1930; parking ticket first attested 1947. Big ticket item is from 1970. Slang the ticket “just the thing, what is expected” is recorded from 1838, perhaps with notion of a winning lottery ticket. v.1610s, from ticket (n.). Related: Ticketed; ticketing. see just the ticket; meal ticket; split ticket; straight ticket; write one’s own ticket.

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