Meaning of whistle-stop in English:



  • Very fast and with only brief pauses.

    ‘a whistle-stop tour of Britain’
    • ‘Finally, there were the ubiquitous Japanese tourists, who were presumably on whistle-stop tours of Oxford with the intention of capturing as much of it on film as possible.’
    • ‘Mr Blunkett's whistle-stop tour continued with meetings with Keighley Together, a group set up to underline the positive images of the town, and the Braithwaite People's Association.’
    • ‘And, as if it to prove a point, he shepherded us to the top deck for an aerial, whistle-stop tour of the city away from the thundering road drills.’
    • ‘His discussions have been brief in his whistle-stop tour of 18 capitals, with his colleagues giving him a clear picture of what they believe the next commission president should be like.’
    • ‘Mr Blunkett's whistle-stop tour of the country as Mr Blair's backbench envoy will see him visit eight regions between now and the end of March.’
    • ‘Both candidates looked tired in public appearances yesterday following a week of whistle-stop visits to the swing states, from New Hampshire in the North East to Florida in the southeast.’
    • ‘The Cabinet Minister made whistle-stop visits to meetings in York and Scarborough and Whitby - the constituencies of Labour MPs Hugh Bayley and Lawrie Quinn.’
    • ‘John Prescott meanwhile continued his whistle-stop tour of West Yorkshire with a quick trip to Keighley bus station.’
    • ‘This was immediately preceded by US Secretary of State Colin Powell's whistle-stop tour of Tunisia, Morocco and Algeria.’
    • ‘Kirstie, star of Channel Four shows Location, Location, Location and Relocation, Relocation, went on a whistle-stop tour of the district's residential properties to see what Bradford has to offer.’
    • ‘The 28 Roses will arrive in Dublin on Tuesday, August 20, from where they will embark on a whistle-stop tour of Ireland before arriving in Tralee on Friday, August 23.’
    • ‘The popstar was visiting the Virgin Megastore on Sheffield's Fargate as part of a whistle-stop record signing national tour.’
    • ‘He enjoyed a whistle-stop tour of the deanery during which he met all the Anglican clergy.’
    • ‘Mr McNulty visited the station in Cocklebury Road on Tuesday, while on a whistle-stop tour of north and west Wiltshire.’
    • ‘Mr Blair is preparing for a whistle-stop tour of Berlin, Paris, Washington, New York and Brussels.’
    • ‘Seven Spanish GPs were on a whistle-stop tour of the district as part of a second weekend of interviews.’
    • ‘His whistle-stop tour - which included a visit to the Ribble Valley - has given him plenty of material for features on the Red Rose County in tourism and holiday publications.’
    • ‘Those on a whistle-stop tour will probably head for Rovaniemi, the Arctic Circle's main Santa centre, which has a dedicated theme park where you can watch the great man and his little helpers at work.’
    • ‘His example has been emulated by almost all top leaders of different parties who have been criss-crossing the highways with their whistle-stop tours, poll after poll.’
    • ‘My trip, which included Madeira and a whistle-stop tour of the Canary Islands, was filled with a controlled whirl of almost non-stop activities and fun.’
    quick, fast, swift, speedy, high-speed, expeditious, express, brisk, lively, prompt, flying, fleeting, lightning, meteoric, overnight, whirlwind, fast-track, whistle-stop


  • 1North American A small unimportant town on a railway.

    ‘she raised five kids in Hornepayne, a whistle stop along the CN Line north of Lake Superior’
    • ‘En route to the World's Fair, the girls would sharpen their skills and increase their visibility by playing exhibition and challenge games at whistle-stops all along the way.’
    • ‘But Racine is much more than a whistle-stop on the dairy run.’
    • ‘In 1941, what is now Warner Robins was a sleepy little whistle-stop known as Wellston, located just south of Macon in the central part of the state.’
    • ‘In the 1930s, when the de Basil company first began touring the States, it brought ballet to thousands of Americans with frequent whistle-stops - one-night stands in small towns.’
    • ‘Key gateways are Kalispell (with the nearest airport, served by Delta, Northwest, Horizon, and Big Sky), Whitefish, and the whistle-stops of West Glacier and East Glacier Park’
    1. 1.1A brief pause in a tour by a politician for an electioneering speech.
      ‘in politics, smoky back rooms long ago gave way to the whistle-stop and the radio exhortation’
      • ‘Such ‘cultural events’ have become popular whistle-stops for political parties keen to woo the nearly 300,000 Asian New Zealanders of voting age.’
      • ‘As he spoke at the first whistle-stop, 19-year-old Ben Brown, an NDP supporter, stood silently holding a sign warning of environmental damage under a Conservative government.’
      • ‘Diane Schmitt, a recruiter in Prescott, Ariz., let Bart talk to a handful of her recruits, at one of his first whistle-stops, which included Oklahoma, Ohio and New York.’