Contact Us

Where Does the Saying ‘Take a Raincheck’ Come From?

Raincheck
Thinkstock

When you say, “I’ll take a raincheck,” you’re telling someone that you can’t accept his or her offer or invitation now, but you’d be happy to accept it down the road. The phrase can also be used sarcastically, by letting someone know you’d prefer to delay something unpleasant until the future, or as a promise for out-of-stock goods.

But how did this expression make it into our lexicon?

The saying actually comes from baseball. When a game was stopped on account of rain, the disappointed fans were given ‘rain checks’ as vouchers for future games. Of course, the folks running the show didn’t want to lose all of their cash by issuing rain checks, so they did everything they could to keep the teams playing, including slinging tarps over the field when it began to pour and forcing the fans to wait in the stands for a break in the clouds.

The expression has found its way into Australian and British English as well, two countries that play cricket, not baseball. People living Down Under, or in the British Isles, might not have the faintest clue about the American pastime, but if someone offers them a rain check for a postponed sporting event or a fancy dinner party, they’ll sure has heck know what that other person is talking about.

[Education Bug]

Best of WFNT

Recommended For You

Around the Web

Leave a Comment

It appears that you already have an account created within our VIP network of sites on . To keep your personal information safe, we need to verify that it's really you. To activate your account, please confirm your password. When you have confirmed your password, you will be able to log in through Facebook on both sites.

Forgot your password?

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

It appears that you already have an account on this site associated with . To connect your existing account just click on the account activation button below. You will maintain your existing VIP profile. After you do this, you will be able to always log in to http://wfnt.com using your original account information.

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

Please fill out the information below to help us provide you a better experience.

(Forgot your password?)

Not a member? Sign up here

Please solve this simple math problem to prove that you are a real person.

Sign up for WFNT Treasure Trove quickly by connecting your Facebook account. It's just as secure and no password to remember!

Sign up to have exclusive WFNT Treasure Trove contests, events, coupons, presales, and much more delivered to you for FREE.