[ pahy-luh-ting ]
/ ˈpaɪ lə tɪŋ /


the determination of the course or position of a ship or airplane by any of various navigational methods or devices.

Origin of piloting

First recorded in 1710–20; pilot + -ing1

Definition for piloting (2 of 2)


[ pahy-luht ]
/ ˈpaɪ lət /


verb (used with object)


serving as an experimental or trial undertaking prior to full-scale operation or use: a pilot project.

Origin of pilot

1520–30; earlier pylotte < Middle French pillotte < Italian pilota, dissimilated variant of pedota < Medieval Greek *pēdṓtēs steersman, equivalent to pēd(á) rudder (plural of pēdón oar) + -ōtēs agent suffix

Related forms

un·pi·lot·ed, adjectivewell-pi·lot·ed, adjective

Can be confused

Pilate pilot
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for piloting

British Dictionary definitions for piloting (1 of 2)


/ (ˈpaɪlətɪŋ) /


the navigational handling of a ship near land using buoys, soundings, landmarks, etc, or the finding of a ship's position by such means
the occupation of a pilot

British Dictionary definitions for piloting (2 of 2)


/ (ˈpaɪlət) /


verb (tr)

Word Origin for pilot

C16: from French pilote, from Medieval Latin pilotus, ultimately from Greek pēdon oar; related to Greek pous foot
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