Definition of foreigner in English:



  • 1A person born in or coming from a country other than one's own.

    • ‘How many European elections are contested by foreigners with foreign accents?’
    • ‘Few foreigners are badly hurt during the kidnappings and ransom fees are usually paid to secure their release.’
    • ‘They hate foreigners because Americans are foreigners, fugitives from the old order.’
    • ‘But the number of attacks and harassment against foreigners in Ukraine in the last few months make it necessary to investigate the motives of this murder carefully, including racist motivations.’
    • ‘An important distinction is that between foreigners passing through and metics settled in the polis.’
    • ‘In Japan it seems, once a foreigner, eternally a foreigner.’
    • ‘Like the French crowds of 1792, they turned their wrath against foreigners and foreign words.’
    • ‘This right wing party is attacking foreigners and foreign cultures.’
    • ‘At midday Wednesday, buses brought some 90 Ukrainians from Gaza into Israel, and more foreigners were expected to enter later in the day, military spokesman Shadi Yassin said.’
    • ‘The name of a child born to a foreigner in Bulgaria will be determined according to the parents' decision.’
    • ‘Not that I don't think it's a good idea - hell, if it had been my misfortune to be born a foreigner, I might do the same - but I wonder what put it in their heads to do it now.’
    • ‘I will forever be a foreigner, of course, gaijin, a dog who walks on hind legs, and that's fine by me - it's not my culture.’
    • ‘It is those foreigners sent here by foreign companies that receive high salaries for working in Shanghai.’
    • ‘Immigrants may mean refugees, migrants, remigrants and other foreigners and, in some cases, asylum seekers as well.’
    • ‘These pages provide information for employers hiring foreigners and foreigners coming to work in Finland or already living in Finland.’
    • ‘This sounds unlikely coming from a farang - the Thai term for a foreigner - but the trader doesn't hesitate.’
    • ‘Exchange permits may, furthermore, be issued to foreigners not older than 25 years of age, who wish to participate in cultural, economic or social exchange programmes, administered by an organ of State or a public higher educational institution in conjunction with an organ of a foreign state.’
    • ‘Looking around this country through the eyes of a gaijin - a foreigner - things are just different.’
    • ‘This foreigner was born in Japan, as were his parents.’
    • ‘The only locals here have been brought by foreigners, and foreigners would only bring a local for one reason.’
    1. 1.1informal A person not belonging to a particular place or group; a stranger or outsider.
      • ‘Almost all of my films of the year came from abroad, or were made in America by foreigners or outsiders.’
      • ‘God has prepared a city for us strange Presbyterians and for all the other foreigners God loves.’
      • ‘He did concede that he would never quite belong at Old Trafford, would always remain a foreigner there.’
      • ‘Many immigrants are classed as foreigners in Germany, despite being born or brought up in the country.’
      • ‘From his youth, he had styled himself as a foreigner and an outsider.’
      • ‘The man from Europe is still a foreigner and an alien.’
      • ‘Their job is to assault all outsiders and foreigners in the village!’
      • ‘You may even feel like an outsider - a foreigner in your own country.’
      • ‘All foreigners and outsiders, however, were suspect in everybody's eyes.’
      • ‘I was an outsider, a foreigner, not even an employee and we talked about anything and everything.’
      • ‘Born in Glasgow, he seemed more like a foreigner than a familiar face after the best part of two decades playing and coaching in Holland.’
      • ‘Targeting wealthy foreigners, houses for outsiders were much more expensive than houses for locals.’
      • ‘It needs a foreigner's eye, an outside viewpoint to see things the local people no longer see.’
      • ‘You don't talk like the rest of us, like the man on the street, but rather like a foreigner who does not belong here.’
      alien, foreign national, non-native, immigrant, settler, newcomer, stranger, outsider
      visitor, tourist
      View synonyms
  • 2British informal A piece of work done for private gain without an employer's permission or without declaration to the relevant authorities.