[ drif-ter ]
See synonyms for drifter on Thesaurus.com
  1. a person or thing that drifts.

  2. a person who goes from place to place, job to job, etc., remaining in each for a short period.

  1. Also called drift boat . a boat used in fishing with a drift net.

Origin of drifter

First recorded in 1860–65; drift + -er1

Words Nearby drifter

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use drifter in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for drifter


/ (ˈdrɪftə) /

  1. a person or thing that drifts

  2. a person who moves aimlessly from place to place, usually without a regular job

  1. a boat used for drift-net fishing

  2. nautical a large jib of thin material used in light breezes

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012