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What Does “SHIP” Mean on Instagram?

What Does &Quot;Ship&Quot; Mean On Instagram

I know you might think about the logistics and sea-craft route – and that’s alright. But when it comes to Instagram and other social media platforms, ‘SHIP’ has a different meaning. Have you ever been ‘SHIPPED’ or asked if you ‘SHIP’ someone?

Wait, there is nothing about human trafficking related to this!

Quick Answer

SHIP” on Instagram stems from the word “relationship.” If you “ship” someone, you want them to date another person. You want them to be in a relationship. The term often makes sense when there are two parties involved. I could say I ship them. It means that I want them to be in a relationship or be a couple.

It is crucial to understand this word. You want to use it correctly and avoid falling out of context. Also, misusing it could mean going against Instagram policies (you want to avoid using it to mean ferrying someone from one point to another). Read below how to use and reply to “SHIP” on Instagram.

What Is ‘SHIP’?

SHIP here isn’t an abbreviation for anything. But, its roots are in the word ‘relationship.’ For Example, Instagrammers follow each other or people they look up to. If they spot a duo that looks good together, they quickly suggest being in a “ship.”

Here, it means that the sender of the ‘SHIP’ word thinks the two will make a good pair or couple. It is an excellent way of suggesting a relationship to someone indirectly. Of course, not everyone on Instagram loves such. But others take it casually.

Sometimes, it has happened that followers of two buddies commented that a ship between the two could work, and it did.

How Is ‘SHIP’ Used?

It is possible to use ‘SHIP’ in a direct conversation. It is a superb way of suggesting to two people that they can be in a relationship. But, avoid making it a random comment since not all Instagrammers are okay with unsolicited advice.

For those who don’t bother, only use it relevantly. You don’t want to look like you run a dating platform and your task is matching people with potential partners. “SHIP” is used to mean romantic relationships in most contexts.

When To Use ‘SHIP’ on Instagram

“SHIP” is a casual term on Instagram. Often, Instagrammers use it among their social circles. The word can’t fit in a formal conversation unless it otherwise means something different. Here are a few situations when you can use ‘SHIP’ on Instagram:

  • When you discover someone, you often follow in the presence of another person that seems to show affection for them.
  • If a bosom follower is showing signs of being in a relationship with someone, they often post.
  • When showing support for a romantic relationship among your followers.
  • When you want to communicate a sense of stronger affinity or interest for a certain romantic pairing.

Avoid confusing this meaning for an actual ship. If the context isn’t referring to a nautical vessel for transporting goods and people, it means the former. The general rule of thumb is to check the context of the message.

It could refer to a romantic relationship or a real sea craft. While at it, you want to answer appropriately to avoid confusion.

How To Reply When You Are Sent a ‘SHIP’ Message or Comment

Instagram is primarily a photo and video sharing platform. It is only through such context that viewers can start shipping a potential couple.

When someone sends you ‘SHIP’ in a comment on a message, reply depending on how you feel. You can respond with an emoji to briefly express your reaction to the statement. You can reply with ‘thanks’ or ‘thank you’ if you don’t want more cropping out of the conversation.

Sometimes, this could appear to others like unsolicited advice. If you receive a ‘SHIP’ message and feel offended, explain yourself and how you feel. Keep it courteous to avoid appearing wild.

The sender might apologize if they are kind enough. Snob it on other occasions that you don’t feel the need to reply.


Instagram is a fun platform, and the content you share might lead to speculations and suggestions from your followers and visitors.

If you often post a friend or colleague in most photos, you will find one or two followers suggesting that you should ship each other. Sometimes, there could be no chemistry between the two of you.

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