Cheque vs. check – which form is correct?

Cheque vs. check. Cheque and check sound identical when spoken, but they are rather different when it comes to spelling. Does it mean that one of these words is incorrect? Or perhaps they are both correct and can replace each other? To find out you will have to check out this article! ….or could it be cheque?

Cheque or check? Which form is correct meaning definition correct form difference examples

Cheque vs. check – which form is correct?

It turns out that both cheque and check are correct! In fact, in certain conditions these words have the same meaning, but not in any context. Carry on reading for more information.

Cheque vs. check – what is the difference?

Cheque and check are examples of yet another difference in spelling between British and American English. In a nutshell, cheque is the standard British spelling of the noun that refers to a written order directing a bank to pay out money. American English speakers spell this word check and use it in many other contexts. Read the below section to see if you know all definitions of both words.

What is the meaning of cheque?

As mentioned above, cheque is a British variant of a word that means a printed form used to make payments from your bank account.

I don’t have any cash on me, could I pay with a/by cheque instead?

What is the meaning of check?

Check has multiple meanings and can be a noun or a verb. It is the American variant of the noun used in banking-related sense described above. Other meanings of the noun check (used in all variants of English) include:

  • an examination of something in order to make certain that it is correct or the way it should be:

Let’s have a check in the bedroom to see if your keys are in there.

  • a pattern of squares in two or more colours:

She wore a skirt with a pattern of pink and blue checks.

  • a bill in a restaurant, etc.:

Can I have the check, please?

  • a mark (✓) showing that something is correct or has been done:

Put a check by/against the items that you have bought.

Check also has multiple meanings as a verb. Some of these definitions are:

  • to examine something to see if it is correct, safe or acceptable

You should always check your oil, water, and tyres before setting off.

  • to find out about something:

We were interrupted by a waiter checking to see if everything was OK.

  • Stop or slow the progress of (something, typically something undesirable)

check the disease

  • to put a mark (✓) next to an item on a list, an answer, etc.

Check the box next to the right answer.

  • to stop yourself from saying or doing something or from showing a particular emotion

He wanted to tell her everything but he checked himself – it wasn’t the right moment.

  • to give your bags to airport employees to be put on a plane for you, rather than carrying them on and off the plane yourself:

I got my boarding pass and checked my suitcase.

Cheque vs. check – more examples from the literature and press

Federick had wanted to pay for the timber with something called a cheque, which, it seemed, was a piece of paper with a promise to pay written upon it.

George Orwell, Animal Farm: A Fairy Story

But it is not true, he insists, that the BBC writes him a blank cheque.

“The Guardian”, Jan 27, 2013

Let me just write you a cheque, just in case, you know? You don’t even have to cash it.

Paula Hawkins, The Girl on the Train

When citizens or businesses receives a government cheque, they deposit it at their commercial bank, which presents it to the Fed.

“Reuters”, Feb 22, 2021

Written by

After graduating with a MA in English Philology, Kasia lived for almost five years in the UK facing the challenge of trying to master the intricacies of English language, which is her consuming passion. Other things she enjoys doing in her spare time are singing in a local parish band, embroidery, reading, cycling, and enjoying the outdoors with her family and friends.