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Drag vs. Haul: What's the Difference?

Edited by Janet White || By Harlon Moss || Updated on November 14, 2023
Drag refers to pulling something along a surface, often with resistance or difficulty, while haul means to carry or transport something, especially heavy or large items.

Key Differences

Dragging typically implies pulling something across a surface with contact, often requiring effort due to friction or weight. Hauling, however, involves transporting something from one place to another, which can include lifting and carrying.
Drag is often used in contexts where there is resistance, such as dragging a heavy object across a floor. Whereas, haul usually refers to moving larger quantities or weights, like hauling furniture during a move.
The action of dragging is generally slower and more laborious, often indicating a struggle. Hauling, however is associated with the effort of transport over a distance, whether it's a short or a long journey.
In everyday language, drag can also mean something that is tedious or prolongs a situation. Haul, in a different context, can refer to a large amount of something obtained or accumulated, like in the phrase "a big haul."
Drag can be used metaphorically to describe a slow or delayed process, whereas haul is often literal, relating to physical movement or transportation of items.

Comparison Chart

Basic Definition

Pulling something along a surface
Carrying or transporting heavy/large items

Contextual Use

Resistance, like dragging an object
Moving larger quantities, like hauling goods

Nature of Action

Slower, laborious, often with struggle
Effort in transport over a distance

Additional Meanings

Tedious or prolonging activity
Large amount of something obtained

Metaphorical Use

Slow or delayed process
Literal, related to physical movement

Drag and Haul Definitions


Moving slowly or with difficulty.
The meeting seemed to drag on forever.


A long or arduous journey.
It was a long haul from the coast to the mountains.


A tedious or boring activity.
Cleaning the garage is such a drag.


Transporting heavy or large items.
They had to haul the furniture to the new house.


Pulling something along the ground.
He had to drag the heavy suitcase up the stairs.


Pulling or dragging with effort.
He hauled the boat onto the shore.


Something that hinders or impedes.
The outdated software was a drag on productivity.


A large quantity of something obtained.
The fishermen celebrated their big haul.


Resistance encountered in motion.
Aerodynamic designs reduce drag on vehicles.


Carrying or moving something over a distance.
The truckers haul goods across the country.


To pull along with difficulty or effort; haul
Dragged the heavy box out of the way.


To pull or drag forcibly
They hauled the boat onto the beach. We hauled the wood into the shed.


To cause to trail along a surface, especially the ground
Don't drag your coat in the mud.


To transport, as with a truck or cart
The contractor used a truck to haul away the dirt and debris.


To move (a pointing device, such as a mouse) while pressing down on one of its buttons.


To cause (oneself) to move, especially slowly or laboriously
I hauled myself down to the lobby.


Does drag always imply difficulty?

Often, but drag can also simply refer to the act of pulling along a surface.

What is hauling?

Hauling is the act of carrying or transporting heavy or bulky items.

What does it mean to drag something?

To drag means to pull something across a surface, often with effort.

Is hauling always physical?

Hauling typically refers to physical transport, but can also imply a long effort.

Is drag used in scientific contexts?

Yes, in physics, drag refers to resistance encountered by a moving object.

Can haul refer to a quantity?

Yes, haul can refer to a large amount of something obtained.

What does a long haul mean?

A long haul typically refers to a long or arduous journey or task.

Can drag be used for slow events?

Yes, drag can describe events that are slow or seem to last too long.

Can drag be used metaphorically?

Yes, drag can metaphorically refer to a slow or tedious activity.

Can haul mean to carry by hand?

Yes, haul can include carrying by hand, though it often involves larger items.

Can haul refer to a difficult task?

Yes, haul can imply a task that is challenging or takes a lot of effort.

Is hauling used in transportation industries?

Yes, hauling is commonly used in contexts like trucking and freight.

Does drag imply resistance?

Yes, drag often involves resistance, either physical or metaphorical.

Is drag relevant in vehicle design?

Yes, reducing drag is important in designing efficient vehicles.

What does 'haul away' mean?

Haul away means to remove or transport something away from a place.

Does haul have a nautical use?

Yes, in nautical terms, haul can mean to pull or move a boat or ship.

What is an aerodynamic drag?

Aerodynamic drag is resistance caused by air when an object moves through it.

Is drag used in computer interfaces?

Yes, drag is used in computing to describe moving objects on a screen.

Can drag be a noun and a verb?

Yes, drag can function as both a noun and a verb.

Can haul be used in retail?

Yes, in retail, haul can refer to a large quantity of purchased items.
About Author
Written by
Harlon Moss
Harlon is a seasoned quality moderator and accomplished content writer for Difference Wiki. An alumnus of the prestigious University of California, he earned his degree in Computer Science. Leveraging his academic background, Harlon brings a meticulous and informed perspective to his work, ensuring content accuracy and excellence.
Edited by
Janet White
Janet White has been an esteemed writer and blogger for Difference Wiki. Holding a Master's degree in Science and Medical Journalism from the prestigious Boston University, she has consistently demonstrated her expertise and passion for her field. When she's not immersed in her work, Janet relishes her time exercising, delving into a good book, and cherishing moments with friends and family.

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