Airlift – Definition & Meaning

Airlift is a term that is commonly used in aviation and logistics industries. It refers to the transportation of goods, supplies, or people by air. This mode of transportation is often used in emergency situations, where time is of the essence, or in situations where ground transportation is not feasible. In this article, we will explore the definition and meaning of airlift, its origin, associations, synonyms, antonyms, and the same root words.


According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, airlift is defined as “the transportation of troops and supplies by aircraft, especially over long distances or to areas that cannot be reached by land.” The Oxford English Dictionary defines airlift as “the transportation of people or goods by air, especially in a military operation or during an emergency.”


The term airlift originated during World War II when the British Royal Air Force used aircraft to transport supplies and troops to the front lines. The first large-scale airlift operation was the Berlin Airlift in 1948, where the Western Allies used planes to transport supplies to the people of West Berlin who were cut off from the rest of the world by the Soviet Union.

Meaning in different dictionaries

In addition to the definitions provided by Merriam-Webster and the Oxford English Dictionary, other dictionaries also provide definitions of airlift. The Cambridge Dictionary defines airlift as “the movement of people or goods by aircraft, especially in a military operation or during an emergency.” The Collins English Dictionary defines airlift as “the transportation of people or goods by aircraft, especially in an emergency or during a military operation.”


Airlift is often associated with military operations and emergency situations. It is also associated with humanitarian aid efforts, where aircraft are used to transport supplies and personnel to areas affected by natural disasters or other crises.


Some synonyms of airlift include air transport, air transportation, air cargo, airfreight, and air travel.


Antonyms of airlift include ground transportation, sea transportation, and rail transportation.

The same root words

The same root words as airlift include air, lift, and transport.

Example Sentences

Here are some example sentences that use the term airlift:

  • The United Nations organized an airlift to deliver food and medicine to the people of a war-torn country.
  • The military used an airlift to transport troops and supplies to a remote location.
  • The company relied on an airlift to transport its products to customers in other countries.
  • In an emergency, the hospital can request an airlift to transport critically ill patients to a specialized facility.
  • The airline announced that it would be increasing its airlift capacity to meet the growing demand for air travel.
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