‘Journies’ or ‘Journeys’: What is the Plural of ‘Journey’?

By Carly Forsaith, updated on September 13, 2022

The word journey in its plural form is the source of some confusion. Many are unsure whether to spell it 'journies' or 'journeys.'

In this article, we will answer that question, and highlight the reason for the confusion, and cover the general plural rules in the English language.

Firstly, let's answer the question on everyone's lips and the main reason you're reading this article: is it 'journies' or 'journeys'?

The correct way to spell the plural of the word 'journey' is: 'journeys.'

It is never correct to spell it 'journies.'

Is it 'Journies' or 'Journeys'?

Let's begin by exploring a few ground rules around forming plurals of words.

How Do You Spell the Plural of 'Journey' - Is It 'Journies' or 'Journeys'?

As mentioned already, the plural of 'journey' is always 'journeys'.

Why Is There Confusion over Whether It's 'Journies' or 'Journeys'?

With words that end in "vowel+y," we add "s" at the end to create the plural form of the word.

So why is there confusion around this in the first place? Aren't the rules around plural word spellings reasonably straightforward?

Well, perhaps not.

The main rule is that when a word ends in 'y', to make the plural form, we must change the 'y' to 'ies.' For example:

If we abide by this rule, the plural of 'journey' should be 'journies.'

Not so fast! There's a follow-up rule. This one applies to words with a vowel before that 'y' at the end.

Instead of changing the 'y' to 'ies,' leave the 'y' in and add an 's.'

As a reminder, here is the list of vowels in the English language: a, e, i, o, u.

Here are some examples:

  • Day → days
  • Play → plays
  • Valley → valleys

Can you see then why the plural of 'journey' must be 'journeys'? Since the 'y' in the word is preceded by 'e' (a vowel), we must use the second rule to pluralize 'journey.'

The Standard Rules for Forming the Plurals

The rule for pluralizing words ending in 'y' and vowel + 'e' is, in fact, in agreement with the general rule for pluralizing all words: just add 's.'

Now that you are familiar with the rule for pluralizing words in general and the rule for pluralizing words ending in 'y', would you like to know the standard rules for other words? If so, read on.

Nouns Ending With S, SS, SH, CH, X, or Z

For these words, add 'es' to the end of the word to get the plural form. For example:

  • Box → boxes
  • Church → churches
  • Bus → buses

Sometimes, you need to double the 'z' at the end of the word before adding 'es.' Like in the following examples:

  • Quiz → quizzes
  • Fez ​​→ fezzes

Nouns Ending' O'

Add 's' or 'es' to pluralize words ending with 'o'. For example:

  • Piano → pianos
  • Video → videos
  • Volcano → volcanoes
  • Flamingo → flamingoes

With these words, there is no rule to determine which of the two it should be - 's' or 'es.' You simply have to memorize these.

Nouns Ending F or Fe

The rule for pluralizing words ending in 'f' or 'fe' states that these nouns should either end in 'ves' or 's.' Again, there's no rule to differentiate the two endings; you just have to know.

  • Dwarf → dwarves
  • Roof → roofs
  • Half → halves


To complicate the matter, some words do not follow any of the above rules. They either change entirely in the plural form or don't change at all. Here are some examples:

  • Bacterium → bacteria
  • Child → children
  • Moose → moose
  • Series → Series

Another time when the general rules don't apply is with words ending in 'is.' Though these words end in 's,' they don't follow the same rule. Instead, we change the 'is' to an 'es.' For example:

  • Thesis → theses
  • Analysis → analyses

Also, watch out for words that end in 'us.' Often, these need the 'us' removed, and an 'i' added on at the end. Yes, this is a bit of an odd one! For example:

  • Cactus → cacti
  • Alumnus → alumni

We appreciate that all this can seem quite confusing, but we don't want you to feel overwhelmed! If you're currently learning English as a language, rest assured that the more you read English, the more the correct pluralizations will stick to your mind, as you'll get used to seeing them. Over time, it will become automatic. It just takes a little practice!

And if you are a native English speaker, and are just trying to learn more about your language, now that you have learned the rules, you have become more aware and will now start to pay more attention to the different ways to pluralize words as you read. For you also, knowing the correct spellings will become automatic.

Meaning of the Word 'Journey'

Now that we've dived into the conventions around pluralizing words let's explore the word 'journey' and its meaning.

What Does It Mean?

The word 'journey' is a noun, and its simplest definition is the act of traveling from one place to another.

The term usually implies a somewhat extended period of time, unlike the word 'jaunt,' which is very similar in meaning but is more suited to describe a shorter expedition.

The word 'journey' can refer to a physical trip - traveling from one physical place to another, perhaps to spend a gap year, to go backpacking, or even on a pilgrimage. Here are a few examples of the word used in this sense:

  • To break up the journey, we stopped in a motel en route.
  • The journey from New York to Italy was reasonably smooth.
  • Have a safe journey!

But the word can also refer to a symbolic trip. This could be an emotional journey, a spiritual journey, or a professional journey. Or it can be, quite simply, a life journey. It is, in essence, the story of how you got to be where you are. Here are some examples of ways you can use the word in this sense:

  • I've been on my spiritual journey since I turned 30 years old.
  • This has been an incredible journey, but I'm glad it's over.
  • My professional journey to get here has been tumultuous, to say the least.

'Journey' in Verb Form

The word 'journey' can also take on a verb form without needing to change the word itself.

The verb 'journey' takes on the same meaning as the noun 'journey' - you can use it to refer to the act of going on a journey. Let's see some examples of this verb in action:

  • When you journey through Provence, keep an eye out for the lavender fields.
  • We're currently journeying south.
  • As I journeyed further and further away from home, my spirit began to feel free.

Synonyms of the Word' Journey'

Many words carry a similar meaning to 'journey' while still being somewhat nuanced in what they imply. Here are some of our favorite terms to refer to some kind of journey:

  • Pilgrimage
  • Trek
  • Odyssey
  • Adventure
  • Quest
  • Expedition

Some of these make us feel like we're in an Indiana Jones movie or a Tomb Raider video game! What about you?

Final Thoughts on 'Journies' or 'Journeys'

Hopefully, this article has helped clarify the meaning of the word 'journey' for you and the correct spelling.

To summarize, the plural of the noun 'journey' is always 'journeys.' It is never correct to spell it 'journies.' This would be considered incorrect.

Furthermore, the word can be used both as a noun and a verb.

And remember: keep on reading. It's the best way to improve your English language skills! Read novels and non-fiction on topics that interest you, and of course, our other articles. Here is a couple to get you started:

How to Write Comedy: Tips and Examples to Make People Laugh
'Interested In' or 'Interested On': What's the Correct Preposition to Use?

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Written By:
Carly Forsaith
Carly Forsaith is one of the lead freelance writers for WritingTips.org. Carly is a copywriter who has been writing about the English language for over 3 years. Before that, she was a teacher in Thailand, helping people learn English as a second language. She is a total grammar nerd and spends her time spotting language errors on signs and on the internet.

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