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AM vs. PM: What's the Difference?

Edited by Huma Saeed || By Sawaira Riaz || Published on February 3, 2024
AM (Ante Meridiem) refers to the time from midnight to noon, while PM (Post Meridiem) denotes the time from noon to midnight.

Key Differences

AM, an abbreviation for the Latin term 'Ante Meridiem', is used to denote the time period from midnight (00:00) to just before noon (11:59). It indicates the first half of the day in the 12-hour clock system. In contrast, PM, short for 'Post Meridiem', signifies the time from noon (12:00) to just before midnight (23:59). It covers the second half of the day in the 12-hour clock format.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 03, 2024
When using AM, time is usually understood to be during the morning or the early part of the day. For instance, 8:00 AM indicates eight o'clock in the morning. On the other hand, PM is associated with the afternoon and evening hours. For example, 3:00 PM refers to three o'clock in the afternoon.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 03, 2024
In contexts where clarity is essential, such as travel or scheduling, AM is crucial for indicating early day activities or appointments. A flight at 9:00 AM, for instance, is scheduled for the morning. Whereas PM is essential for distinguishing activities scheduled for later in the day, like a meeting at 5:00 PM, which is understood to be in the evening.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 03, 2024
AM times are often associated with routine morning activities like breakfast or commuting to work. It’s used in everyday language to plan events that occur before noon. Conversely, PM times are linked with afternoon and evening activities such as lunch, dinner, or evening entertainment, marking events scheduled post-noon.
Janet White
Feb 03, 2024
In digital devices and international contexts, using AM and PM helps differentiate between morning and evening times in the 12-hour clock system, avoiding confusion with the 24-hour clock. For example, 7:00 AM in a 12-hour format is 07:00 in a 24-hour format, while 7:00 PM is 19:00.
Janet White
Feb 03, 2024
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Comparison Chart

Meaning

Ante Meridiem (before noon)
Post Meridiem (after noon)
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 03, 2024

Time Range

Midnight (00:00) to just before noon (11:59)
Noon (12:00) to just before midnight (23:59)
Huma Saeed
Feb 03, 2024

Typical Associations

Morning activities, breakfast time
Afternoon and evening activities, dinner time
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 03, 2024

Usage Example

"The flight departs at 10:00 AM."
"The movie starts at 8:00 PM."
Harlon Moss
Feb 03, 2024

Clock Format

First half of the 12-hour clock
Second half of the 12-hour clock
Aimie Carlson
Feb 03, 2024
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AM and PM Definitions

AM

Morning Hours.
He jogs at 6:00 AM daily.
Harlon Moss
Jan 19, 2024

PM

Afternoon Hours.
She has lunch at 12:30 PM.
Huma Saeed
Jan 19, 2024

AM

Before Noon.
The seminar starts at 11:00 AM.
Aimie Carlson
Jan 19, 2024

PM

Evening Time.
Dinner reservations are at 7:00 PM.
Harlon Moss
Jan 19, 2024

AM

Early Part of the Day.
Breakfast is served at 7:00 AM.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 19, 2024

PM

Late Day Activities.
Gym classes start at 6:00 PM.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 19, 2024

AM

Beginning of Business Hours.
The store opens at 9:00 AM.
Harlon Moss
Jan 19, 2024

PM

After Noon.
The meeting is scheduled for 1:00 PM.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 19, 2024

AM

Sunrise Period.
Sunrise today is at 5:30 AM.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 19, 2024

PM

Sunset Hours.
Sunset is expected at 8:00 PM.
Harlon Moss
Jan 19, 2024

AM

First person singular present indicative of be.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 18, 2024

PM

Alternative form of p.m.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 18, 2024

AM

Inflection of be
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 18, 2024

PM

An examination and dissection of a dead body to determine cause of death or the changes produced by disease
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 18, 2024

AM

The first person singular of the verb be, in the indicative mode, present tense. See Be.
God said unto Moses, I am that am.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 18, 2024

PM

A soft silvery metallic element of the rare earth group having no stable isotope; was discovered in radioactive form as a fission product of uranium
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 18, 2024

AM

A radioactive transuranic metallic element; discovered by bombarding uranium with helium atoms
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 18, 2024

PM

The person who holds the position of head of state in England
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 18, 2024

AM

A master's degree in arts and sciences
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 18, 2024

PM

Modulation of the phase of the carrier wave
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 18, 2024

AM

Modulation of the amplitude of the (radio) carrier wave
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 18, 2024

PM

After noon
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 18, 2024

PM

Between noon and midnight;
Let's meet at 8 P.M.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 18, 2024

FAQs

Does PM include the evening?

Yes, PM includes the afternoon and evening until midnight.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 03, 2024

What do AM and PM stand for?

AM stands for Ante Meridiem, and PM stands for Post Meridiem.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 03, 2024

What time does AM start and end?

AM starts at midnight (00:00) and ends just before noon (11:59).
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 03, 2024

Is 12 PM noon or midnight?

12 PM is noon.
Janet White
Feb 03, 2024

Can AM and PM be used in a 24-hour clock?

No, AM and PM are specific to the 12-hour clock format.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 03, 2024

Is midnight referred to as 12 AM or 12 PM?

Midnight is referred to as 12 AM.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 03, 2024

Can AM and PM be lowercased?

They can be, but capitalization is standard.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 03, 2024

Do all countries use AM and PM?

Not all; some prefer the 24-hour clock format.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 03, 2024

What is 3:00 PM in a 24-hour format?

3:00 PM is 15:00 in a 24-hour format.
Janet White
Feb 03, 2024

How do I know if a time is AM or PM?

The time of day (morning or evening) indicates AM or PM.
Janet White
Feb 03, 2024

Is 12 AM noon or midnight?

12 AM is midnight.
Huma Saeed
Feb 03, 2024

Is the noon hour expressed as 12 PM?

Yes, noon is expressed as 12 PM.
Harlon Moss
Feb 03, 2024

What happens to AM/PM in daylight saving time?

AM and PM times shift accordingly with daylight saving changes.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 03, 2024

Is 11:59 PM followed by 12:00 AM?

Yes, 11:59 PM is followed by 12:00 AM.
Harlon Moss
Feb 03, 2024

Is there a space between the time and AM/PM?

Typically, a space is used (e.g., 9:00 AM).
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 03, 2024

Are AM and PM used in formal writing?

Yes, they are used in both formal and informal contexts.
Sawaira Riaz
Feb 03, 2024

How do airlines handle AM and PM in flight schedules?

Airlines use AM and PM to indicate departure and arrival times.
Aimie Carlson
Feb 03, 2024

Can AM and PM be confusing in time zones?

Yes, especially when communicating across different time zones.
Harlon Moss
Feb 03, 2024

Are AM and PM capitalized?

Yes, AM and PM are usually capitalized.
Aimie Carlson
Feb 03, 2024

What is the correct way to write AM and PM?

With periods (A.M., P.M.) or without (AM, PM).
Harlon Moss
Feb 03, 2024
About Author
Written by
Sawaira Riaz
Sawaira is a dedicated content editor at difference.wiki, where she meticulously refines articles to ensure clarity and accuracy. With a keen eye for detail, she upholds the site's commitment to delivering insightful and precise content.
Edited by
Huma Saeed
Huma is a renowned researcher acclaimed for her innovative work in Difference Wiki. Her dedication has led to key breakthroughs, establishing her prominence in academia. Her contributions continually inspire and guide her field.

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