In India, among college-goers, 'out-state' serves as an adjective! I think it's a poor use of that word. The youngsters, though informally, refer the people from different state as 'out-state'.

Forgive him; he does not know the rituals. He's 'out-state'!

It's a poor use of 'out state' words. Today, I read in the newspaper (Indian)

The article 370 does not allow non-state subjects to purchase any immovable property in the state.

This looked a bit standard but want to confirm by you all.

What do you refer to a person who is from different state? 'Out-state person', 'Outlander' (but I think this is someone from different country) or non-state subject?

Any better word/term for a person from different state (say -New York State) staying in different state (say -Alaska)?

  • You could simply form a noun by adding 'er': 'he's an out-stater'.
    – Alan Third
    Commented Dec 15, 2014 at 13:01
  • They're called 'foreigners'.
    – user6951
    Commented Dec 16, 2014 at 0:57

6 Answers 6


We sometimes use the term out-of-state when referring to something like the tuition rate, and non-resident when referring to the person:

She's a non-resident; she'll have to pay out-of-state tuition next year.

Here's how I'd say the second sentence in your question (U.S. English):

Article 370 does not allow out-of-state buyers to purchase any immovable property in the state.


Article 370 does not allow non-residents to purchase any immovable property in the state.

As for the first, that seems more informal; I'd simply say:

Forgive him; he does not know the rituals. He's not from around here!

  • 1
    True...but somehow, non-resident to me is more applicable to non-resident of city (as the website says) and not the state. What say? We do have a term NRI but then we have to define 'India'. Simply non-resident may create some ambiguity. I'm interested in 'non-state' subject. Hey, what about that term itself? non-state subject as used by a reputed Indian Newspaper. Do you agree?
    – Maulik V
    Commented Dec 15, 2014 at 11:14
  • 5
    I've don't recalling hearing non-state in the U.S. And we don't use the word subject very often when referring to people :^)
    – J.R.
    Commented Dec 15, 2014 at 11:46
  • 1
    Referring to a person as a 'subject' rather than, say, a citizen, implies they're living in a monarchy. 'Non-state subject' reads fine to me, but you wouldn't want to use it in colloquial conversation, it would sound rather pompous.
    – Alan Third
    Commented Dec 15, 2014 at 12:02
  • 1
    @MaulikV "Non-state" generally implies that they aren't associated with any state; a "non-state citizen" sounds like it means "stateless person" (at least to me).
    – cpast
    Commented Dec 15, 2014 at 20:54
  • 1
    corrected! I must have missed that in the original post. Certainly subjects in the "kingdom" sense. Indeed very foreign to American English speakers. We would use the term 'citizen'.
    – DoverAudio
    Commented Dec 16, 2014 at 16:39

This seems like the kind of issue that may vary significantly between contexts - in particular those countries that are federations of 'states' such as the US, Australia or India.

From my Australian context I would proffer the following suggestions:

  • He's from interstate (Preferred Australian usage. Interstate can also be legitimately used as an adjective - interstate students etc.).
  • He's from out-of-state/out-state (Less common in Australia, but I believe more common in the US, which if I'm not wrong, tends to restrict use of 'Interstate' mostly to highways).
  • He's not a local (maybe not quite what you're after, but as far as I know, it works everywhere - sometimes simplest is best).

Non-state in the context you've given seems like quite a localized usage - in it's wider usage, non-state is synonymous with non-governmental (eg. non-state actors) which is not what you're after.

  • But then not a local is also used if you are from different city though in the same state, at least in India. What about there?
    – Maulik V
    Commented Dec 15, 2014 at 10:18
  • True - the context would be what indicates the degree of 'non-localness'. Commented Dec 15, 2014 at 10:20
  • Non-local is a good option to have, because sometimes out-of-state wouldn't apply (such as when a discount only applies to county residents, or when only town residents are eligible for a parking permit).
    – J.R.
    Commented Dec 15, 2014 at 10:30
  • 1
    Well, instead of 'not local' you can say 'not from this state' or 'from another state'.
    – Alan Third
    Commented Dec 15, 2014 at 11:58
  • In the U.S., "interstate" normally means "involving two or more states". So "interstate highways" are highways that cross state boundaries. (Americans find it paradoxical and funny that the government calls certain roads in Hawaii "interstate highways", as Hawaii is an island and the roads do not connect to any other state.) An "interstate basketball competition" is one in which teams from several states compete. Etc. Sometimes we use "intrastate" as the opposite, i.e. meaning only related to one state. We do not call someone from another state an "interstate person".
    – Jay
    Commented May 21, 2015 at 13:31

I'd call him or her an out-of-stater.

"Dave is an out-of-stater from California."



1 :a visitor from another state

2 :a person whose legal domicile is in one state but who lives for an extended time in another state (as to attend college)

Reference: http://i.word.com/idictionary/out-of-stater

  • 1
    You may want to cite a reference and give an example sentence. It's the correct term in my opinion, but it would be helpful to elaborate a little.
    – ColleenV
    Commented Dec 15, 2014 at 13:18
  • Oops. Thank you. I don't actually have a reference. Should I delete my answer?
    – Evorlor
    Commented Dec 15, 2014 at 13:20
  • 1
    Just google it to find a reference, or use the link provided by @ColleenV.
    – Alan Third
    Commented Dec 15, 2014 at 13:25
  • 2
    No, just add some elaboration - the link in my comment is the dictionary.com definition. I think it really helps learners to see words used in a sentence. I'm just trying to help you make your answer a little better.
    – ColleenV
    Commented Dec 15, 2014 at 13:27
  • May I ask, Evorlor, what usage is that? I mean, where do people use this term 'out-of-stater'? I've not heard it, so I am curious who uses it. I am familiar with the adjective 'out-of-state'.
    – user6951
    Commented Dec 16, 2014 at 0:50

The requested phrase can vary based on whether a country has states or not, so I'll give the British perspective.

We don't have a set phrase for this because it's not a concept that's very relevant to the UK. Although the UK is divided into the countries of England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales, there are only four such divisions. In contrast to, say, the USA, there's no concept of being a citizen of England, NI, Scotland or Wales: you're just a British citizen. (In the recent Scottish independence referendum, eligibility to vote was determined entirely by residence over a certain period.)

If we wanted to refer to somebody who wasn't from a specific part of the UK, we'd say "non-English", "non-Northern-Irish", "non-Scottish" or "non-Welsh" or, to remove ambiguity about whether a Spaniard counts as "non-English" in a particular context, "British people not from/from outside England" etc. or "Northern Irish, Scottish and Welsh people", etc. It's rare to have to refer to the general concept of "a person from a different part of the UK" so we'd probably just say that. If we wanted to talk about the situation in a different English-speaking country that did have states or some analogous divisions, we'd just use whatever words the people from that country use to talk about themselves.

  • 1
    I don't think it makes sense to tag a question with all the possible flavors of English, so I was going to remove them and just leave the question tagged as a word-request. I don't want to make your answer look strange though. I do think it's important with word requests for the answers to state what perspective they're coming from if it's likely that there will be differences, so I'm not criticizing your answer, I just don't want to edit the question out from underneath you.
    – ColleenV
    Commented Dec 15, 2014 at 14:39
  • @ColleenV Thanks for the heads-up. Editing the tags makes perfect sense so I'd support that. If you do, go ahead and edit my answer to "The question was originally tagged..." or something similar. Commented Dec 15, 2014 at 14:42

In Maine, United States, we refer to "out-of-staters" as either "flatlanders" or "from away". People from other countries are "foreign", or we say "they are from |country/nation|". Sometimes, when feeling extremely colloquial, we might say "That guys an outta-statah!".


Most native English speakers from countries with a federal structure would use "out-of-state" or the equivalent for whatever their federal constituent parts are called. Here in Canada it would be "out-of-province".

"Out-state" seems like a perfectly understandable term that could easily have arisen somewhere like Australia or the US. I see no problem with saying it's part of the Indian dialect of English and even if writing for speakers of other dialects its probably reasonable to use, but if you want to be safe, use "out-of-state" instead.

"Non-state" though has a rather different existing meaning which is roughly "not part of or connected to the government". "State" has a variety of meanings that have to be determined from context and "non-state" suggests the lack of a "state" rather than not matching the current "state".

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