There are words like "meeting", "gathering" or "get-together" that describe some people coming together for a certain time, for doing certain things together.

Those words may or may not imply that the people getting together are a group (i.e. 3 or more people) -- a meeting can be between two people, but I'd assume that a gathering is typically understood to mean a whole group of people.

Either case, is there any expression or preferebly a single word which indicates that it's exactly two people getting together for some activity?

Words that are typically used for an appointment between two people -- like date or rendezvous -- usually have a romantic connotation. I'm basically looking for a more neutral equivalent.

  • 1
    a one-to-one discussion.
    – Graffito
    Commented Jan 20, 2016 at 14:07
  • May be a "one-on-one X" would also work depending on context...
    – tmh
    Commented Jan 20, 2016 at 14:13

6 Answers 6


Tête–à–tête is sometimes used for a meeting of two people. It connotes privacy (i.e., the conversation thereat is intended to be private).

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    Doesn't tete-a-tete usually have romantic connotation, too?
    – tmh
    Commented Jan 20, 2016 at 12:29
  • Tête–à–tête tends to be associated more with conversation between 2 people and not other activities,
    – BiscuitBoy
    Commented Jan 20, 2016 at 12:30
  • @tmh Not that I know of. It does not preclude romance, of course. Cf. vocabulary.com/dictionary/tete-a-tete
    – anemone
    Commented Jan 20, 2016 at 12:32
  • @BiscuitBoy As for actitivities, it is on a par with 'meeting'. If two people want to play tennis, then of course a game of tennis is in order.
    – anemone
    Commented Jan 20, 2016 at 12:34
  • @anemone Then tete-a-tete might work. In German, this Gallicism is also present and I'd say its meaning leans more towards "date", but that doesn't seem to be the case in an anglophone context.
    – tmh
    Commented Jan 20, 2016 at 12:39

I feel like the simplest answer is partnering. While it can be used to include more than 2 people, it is generally understood to be between two people unless in a business context.

Partner: a person who shares or is associated with another in some action or endeavor; sharer; associate.


Example: Joe and Harriet are partnering to solve global warming.


In IT, pair programming is a common term. It indicates two people sitting down in front of a computer, where one writes code and the other tries to find any possible mistakes as each line is written.

So you can consider "pair up".

to form a pair, or to make two people form a pair

[Macmillan Dicitonary]


Alice and Bob paired up and went to see the new Star Wars Movie

  • I just wonder if there's a corresponding noun for "pair up"?
    – tmh
    Commented Jan 20, 2016 at 12:41
  • @tmh corresponding noun, in IT world, is simply "a pair"
    – k1eran
    Commented Jan 20, 2016 at 14:28
  • @k1eran Yeah, but "pair" describes the entity, not the activity. Compare "group" to "gathering" and "pair" to "tete-a-tete".
    – tmh
    Commented Jan 20, 2016 at 14:56
  • @tmh The benefit of pairing is greatest on tasks that the programmers do not fully understand before they begin - quoting from en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pair_programming
    – k1eran
    Commented Jan 20, 2016 at 15:55

You could consider using twosome which means:

A pair of people considered together.

When you play golf with just one partner, it is called twosome golf.

[Oxford Online Dictionary]

  • @anemone Depending on the context, it is used as an activity as in "I am playing twosome today" in golf, vidoe game, etc.
    – user140086
    Commented Jan 20, 2016 at 12:56

A meeting or a get-together are really the only ones that don’t suggest a social date. They need not imply more than teo people. “Let's meet/get together Thursday between classes to talk about the project” is one way to make the arrangements. It should be at a neutral place—office, coffee shop, outdoors—not his place or yours—to separate it from the social/romantic.


If the meaning is two people doing something together with the purpose of producing a result, this would be "collaborating".

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    This could be improved by including a dictionary definition for "collaborating" to show how it fits the question. Commented Jul 8, 2021 at 21:19

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