Meaning of tarmac in English:


Pronunciation /ˈtɑːmak/

Translate tarmac into Spanish


mass noun
  • 1 trademark in UK Material used for surfacing roads or other outdoor areas, consisting of broken stone mixed with tar.

    as modifier ‘the tarmac path’
    • ‘A decision to replace a paving stone surface in historic Corsham town centre with tarmac in a road safety scheme may be reversed.’
    • ‘A third alternative would be to surround the skateboard area with paving slabs and create access from the main tarmac path to the facility with minor repairs to the surface of the car park.’
    • ‘The surface of the road is made up of a surface layer of tarmac, approximately 4 to 6 inches thick followed by a concrete layer of approximately 12 or 13 inches.’
    • ‘Many bridleways were closed for many months following the outbreak of the disease, and riders had to exercise their horses on private land where they were grazed, or hack out on tarmac roads.’
    • ‘You won't end up wondering what it must have been like 100 years ago because, apart from tarmac road and the other tourists, it's still exactly like it was.’
    1. 1.1the tarmacA runway or other area surfaced with tarmac or a similar material.
      ‘A healthy baby boy was delivered in the back of the helicopter on the tarmac at the Comoro Airfield.’
      • ‘Eyewitnesses reported that one of its wingtips hit the tarmac and the jet crashed through an airport fence and then exploded.’
      • ‘Instead of taking off, however, the plane and its passengers sat on the tarmac in a weather delay for four hours before returning to the terminal.’
      • ‘Waiting on the tarmac at Mehrabad Airport to board the flight that would take me south to Kerman, on the dusty edge of Baluchistan, I studied the plane.’
      • ‘Five minutes down the tarmac and we take an open and contouring track south-east.’

verbverb tarmacs, verb tarmacking, verb tarmacked

  • 1British with object Surface (a road or other outdoor area) with tarmac or a similar material.

    ‘they'll be wanting to tarmac the path’
    • ‘Hawkshead Parish Council is considering tarmacking an area of the village's recreation ground to provide up to 20 contract spaces.’
    • ‘A pioneering scheme which has transformed tarmacked roads into open spaces for the community to enjoy may be repeated in other parts of the borough.’
    • ‘What is especially odd with cab journeys at the moment though is that most of them take place on a completely empty, beautifully tarmacked road.’
    • ‘The tarmac gang have just been back and tarmacked all 4 square feet of it.’
    • ‘The club is to tarmac an area at the front of the pitch, to turn it into a car park.’
    cover, surface, floor, top, finish, concrete, concrete over, asphalt, flag, tile, tar, tarmac, metal
  • 2East African no object Seek employment.

    • ‘it's sad for graduates to tarmac for this long’


    1980s from the idea of walking the streets looking for work.


Early 20th century abbreviation of tarmacadam.