Could you tell if there is any difference in meaning between hang out with someone and hang around with someone? For example:

Mike is always hanging out with that guy.

Mike is always hanging around with that guy.

  • To my native AmE ear, "hanging around" is more passive/implies loitering somehow. Eg: when I hang out with somebody I might go to a bar, go to a park, hike, etc, whatever. If I hang around with somebody I'm probably watching tv or playing videogames on the couch with them. Just my personal connotations; don't take my word for it!
    – neph
    Sep 7, 2021 at 22:40

2 Answers 2


"Hanging out" with someone is something I might describe myself as doing. "I've been hanging out with Paul for the past week; he's a lot funnier than I thought he'd be, just from seeing him in class."

"Hanging around," to me, is more like what someone would say when speaking (negatively) of someone else. "He's been hanging around with that Wilson boy a lot lately--that's where he's picked up this rebellious attitude."


No, no difference. They're both slang idioms, the latter one used more often in the past, the former one starting common use in the 70s, perhaps?

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