Use the word "space" when talking about an area that is available or unavailable:

  • Joan has enough space in her house for the furniture that she wants to buy.
  • There’s not enough space in our car to carry eight people.
  • The city is making space for a new park.
  • Andrea and her husband need more space for their growing family.
  • Tom is looking for some office space to rent.
  • There aren’t any parking spaces left in the parking lot.
  • How much extra space do you have?
  • The teacher asked for the assignment to be double-spaced.

The word "space" is also used for the area that lies beyond the planet Earth:

astronaut astronaut

  • An astronaut is a person who works in space.
  • Space is very cold and there’s very little gravity.
  • Would you like to travel through space someday?

If you separate things in time, use "space out."

  • Can we space out these meetings, please. It’s not a good idea to have one right after another.
  • If you space out the payments on a car, it’s easier to afford something that’s expensive.
  • The people who were exercising spaced out enough to give each other room to move their bodies.

The word "spacey" can be used to describe a person who doesn’t pay attention:

  • I feel a little spacey this morning.
  • Denise is kind of a spacey person. She needs to be told something more than once.
  • Why are you so spacey today?
  • I’m sorry, I just spaced out. What did you say? (A person who "spaces out" isn’t paying attention.)

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This page was first published on December 4, 2012. It was updated on September 28, 2015.