Definition of “hold on” - English Dictionary

“hold on” in British English

See all translations

hold on

phrasal verb with hold uk /həʊld/ us /hoʊld/ verb held, held

(WAIT)

B1 informal used to tell someone to wait for a short time:

Hold on, I'll check in my diary.

C1 informal used to say that you are confused or surprised by something that you have just heard or read and want to understand it:

Now hold on, Ed, that wasn't what we agreed at all!

C1 to manage to stay alive or to deal with a difficult situation:

We just had to hold on until help arrived.

More examples

  • "Are you ready?" "No, hold on."
  • Hold on. I'll be ready in just a moment.
  • Hold on! I'm not ready.
  • We've got to go now. We can't hold on any longer.
  • Hold on. I need to find my glasses.

(HOLD)

to hold something or someone firmly with your hands or arms:

She held on tightly to his waist.

More examples

  • He took my hand and held on very tightly.
  • She grabbed the door handle and held on, even when the car drove off.
  • While I'm up the ladder, you just hold on at the bottom.
  • Grab the rope and hold on - then we'll pull you in.
  • Why on earth did you let go of the wheel? You've got to hold on all the time while the vehicle is moving.

(Definition of “hold on” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

“hold on” in American English

See all translations

hold on

phrasal verb with hold us /hoʊld/ verb past tense and past participle held /held/

to wait, esp. for someone to speak:

She’s on the other line – can you hold on?

(Definition of “hold on” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

“hold on” in Business English

See all translations

hold on

informal
phrasal verb with hold uk /həʊld/ us verb held, held

[ I ] to wait while someone else does something, especially when you are using the phone:

Can you hold on? I'll try to connect you.
Hold on, I'll be with you in a minute.

[ I ] to continue to do something difficult while waiting for help:

Can you hold on for just a few more minutes? Then you can take a break.

(Definition of “hold on” from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)