The verb 'board' [Just for public transport?]

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Tenacious Learner

Senior Member
Spanish
Hi teachers,
He boards the train and looks for a seat.
Synonyms for the verb 'boards' are 'embarks; enters'. Right?
If I'm not mistaken, we can board a ship, a plane, a train, a subway, and a bus.
Is the only use that 'board' has as a verb, just for public transport?
It could never be used for private transport, could it?

Thanks in advance.
 
  • entangledbank

    Senior Member
    English - South-East England
    'Embark' is much more restricted: you embark on a ship, perhaps an aeroplane, but much more commonly it's used figuratively, as in embarking on a new project (= beginning; setting out on). You're right that you don't :cross:board your car, or indeed board a taxi, van, or lorry*. Someone out in the East might like to chip in here to say whether they'd board a rickshaw or a pedicab; I think I might, but I've never had to say such a thing.

    * Boarding a lorry/truck would probably mean getting on the back or in the back, not in one of the seats.
     

    Tenacious Learner

    Senior Member
    Spanish
    'Embark' is much more restricted: you embark on a ship, perhaps an aeroplane
    Hi,
    Thanks for your explanations. Then, I should better use as a synonym for "board", "enter". Expressing that we can also board public transport.
    On second thought, in this case board and get on are synonyms, aren't they? Is it possible to say if I'm at a bus stop: I'll board the bus in a few minutes. Will that be correct?

    TL
     
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    Tenacious Learner

    Senior Member
    Spanish
    Perfectly. The use of board really depends on the size of the vehicle more than anything else. You can board anything larger than a small taxi, and if you know anyone with a private yacht you may well board that too. Unfortunately I don't!:(
    Hi Keith,
    Thanks for your help. Then, somehow the verb board means to 'get on', and that includes, being not the only option, public transport.

    TL
     
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