Port vs Starboard
What’s the difference between them?
left side of a boat or ship.
1. The cruise ship docked at the port.
2. The port was bustling with activity.
3. The sailors loaded cargo onto the ship at the port.
right side of a boat or ship
1. The captain turned the ship towards the starboard.
2. The starboard crew worked diligently to keep the ship on course.
3. The passengers were able to enjoy the spectacular view from the starboard side.
Learn similar and opposite words to spot the difference
3. Left side
2. Right side
4. Opposite direction
1. Right side
2. Starboard side
4. Opposite the port side
2. Port side
4. Left side
5. Opposite direction
Tricks for mastery
Useful tips to understand the difference between confusing words "Port", "Starboard".
1. Remember that the left side of the boat or ship is called 'port', and the right side of the boat or ship is called 'starboard'.
2. If you are facing forward of the boat or ship, the left side would be the 'port' side and the right side would be the 'starboard' side.
Check the full list of commonly confused words in EnglishLearn the difference
Frequently asked questions
In what situations should the first word be used?
The word 'port' is used to refer to the left side of a boat or ship.
When is the appropriate context for using the second word?
The word 'starboard' is used to refer to the right side of a boat or ship.
Do the two words share the same pronunciation?
No, the two words do not share the same pronunciation. 'Port' is pronounced with a short 'o' sound (like in the word 'on') and 'starboard' is pronounced with an 'ar' sound (like in the word 'bar').
What are some common mistakes people make when using these words?
One of the most common mistakes people make when using these words is confusing them. People may also mispronounce them or use them in the incorrect context (i.e. referring to the wrong side of the boat or ship).
Fill in the gaps to check yourself
1. When youre facing forward on a ship, the left side is called the _____.
2. The captain ordered the crew to load the supplies on the _____ side of the vessel.
3. As we sailed, the beautiful sunset was visible on our _____.
4. The damage to the ship was more severe on the _____ side.
5. If you want a great view of the harbor, get a cabin on the _____ side.
6. Traditionally, ships docked in such a way that the _____ side was against the pier.
1. When youre facing forward on a ship, the left side is called the port.
Explanation: When you are facing forward (towards the bow) on a ship or boat, the left-hand side is referred to as the port side.
2. The captain ordered the crew to load the supplies on the starboard side of the vessel.
Explanation: Starboard refers to the right side of a ship when facing forward. This sentence doesnt provide explicit context for left or right, so its a bit trickier for learners.
3. As we sailed, the beautiful sunset was visible on our starboard.
Explanation: Sunsets typically occur in the west. If a ship is sailing north and the sunset is on the right side, that would be the starboard side.
4. The damage to the ship was more severe on the port side.
Explanation: This is a general statement without specific directional clues. But the answer is port as its the opposite of starboard which was used in the previous statement.
5. If you want a great view of the harbor, get a cabin on the port side.
Explanation: Traditionally, ships dock with their left side (port side) facing the harbor or pier.
6. Traditionally, ships docked in such a way that the port side was against the pier.
Explanation: As mentioned previously, traditionally ships dock with the port side facing the pier.
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Download the PDF with a list of commonly confused words made as flashcards for comfortable learning.
List of Commonly Confused Words
Finding your way around the English language can be hard, especially since there are so many confusing words and rules. So, a list of the most confusing words in English is an extremely useful tool for improving language accuracy and sharing the ideas clearly.