Travelator vs Travellator

What is the correct British English spelling for travel(l)ator?

Both travelator and travellator are in use, though the former seems more common online. The latter has been seen in public spaces, this part of the world i.e. Asia.


  • DavidCrosbieDavidCrosbie ✭✭✭
    edited May 2018

    The word is a modification of the US trade name Travolator. So the only rule is to spell it differently if it's not made by the Otis Elevator Company. At least, that's what the lawyers want. In practice the spelling travolator is used a generic term for what I for one think of as a moving pavement. It seems that each airport or similar building complex chooses its own spelling based on whether or not the following considerations seem important:

    1. They may have a Travolator made by Otis Elevators.
    2. The may choose not to use the Otis spelling to avoid complaints from Otis's lawyers.
    3. They may have the American spelling of traveling, traveled etc in mind.
    4. They may have the British spelling of travelling, travelled etc in mind.

    The 'correct' spelling is the spelling used by the particular airport or whatever. If Three airports use three spellings, they're each 'correct' for the individual airport.

    The OED provides ten examples of actual use with the actual spelling used. Two quotes use travelator, one uses travellator, and all the rest use travolator.

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