21 October 2015

Out of Station = Out of Town?

In one of my earlier posts, I had written about Indian English. I was going through the post and found something written about Out of Station. While I referred Out of Station as an incorrect usage, I researched on the origin of this phrase and got some information which I think I should publish here.

The phrase Out of Station is not an incorrect term but where we use is important. I found the following answer on Quora:

This phrase is also obsolete - although it used to be of significance during British Rule. In pre-Independence India, the East India Company used to post its officers to particular “stations”. When they used to be out from their duty stations - the officers used to be referred to as “out of station”.


This phrase was apt in those scenarios and the usage of this term was right. And it continued from then on by anyone who went out of town or away from work. Basically, people did not try to make sense of the term. But now, this phrase should be used only in such scenarios where you are placed in a particular station.

So, Out of Station does not mean Out of Town technically. And using Out of Station when we are out of town or when on leave, away from work, and the like is incorrect.