I am very confused by the three terms:lift and elevator and hoist

Are they all technically same thing or different??


2 Answers 2


In terms of moving objects between levels, then not much.

But in terms of moving people, then lift and elevator are the English and American terms while a hoist is for goods only.


Elevator has a closed cab,


Lift has an open cab,


Hoist has no cab.

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  • $\begingroup$ What you show as an elevator is also called a lift in some countries... And the second image what you have labelled "lift" is also called a hydraulic platform or (mobile) scissor table... $\endgroup$
    – Solar Mike
    Commented Jul 31, 2019 at 19:53
  • $\begingroup$ Yes, you are correct. "Lift" is used in England and "elevator" in America for the same term in public. But in technical terms, "cab" determines the difference between them. Figures are given just for example. There are lots of different types of lifts and elevators as well. $\endgroup$
    – user21307
    Commented Jul 31, 2019 at 21:11

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