Some words can be used as multiple parts of speech. Check, for instance, has several senses as both a noun and a verb. It can also be used in the phrase check in. Check-in, a variant, adds to the versatility of this word. Continue reading to learn more about the correct usage of these phrases.
In this article, I will compare check in vs. check-in. I will include example sentences for each of these words to show you how they appear in context. I will also give you a memory tool to help you decide whether check in or check-in is a better choice for your writing.
Check in as phrasal verb:
When conjugating check in, one used the same conjugations from the word check. In the present tense, the phrase remains check in in the first and second person singular and plural, as well as third person plural. It becomes checks in in the third person singular.
Check-in as noun:
The check-in counter was closed.
The airline said it would create a new check-in process that would allow passengers to volunteer to give up their seats for compensation, and increased the limit of that compensation to $10,000 from $1,350. –The New York Times
Check in or check-in:
Check-in and check in seem similar, but they are different parts of speech. Check in is a verb phrase that means to register upon arrival. Check-in is used as an adjective or a noun to describe objects used for this purpose, or the act itself, respectively. The best way to remember the correct usage of these words is to remember that the word check is itself a verb. The phrase check in contains the word check, and is also used as a verb. By remembering the meaning of its component words, you will always know when to use check in.
Some writers omit the hyphen and shorten this phrase into a single word, forming checkin. Although this usage is rising, it is still several times lower than either check-in or check in. Checkin has yet to gain acceptance (whereas checkout, checkup, and many similar one-word compounds have), perhaps because it looks too much like chicken. Avoid the single-word checkin.