inseparable phrasal verb: run into


The phrasal verb for today is “run into”, and it has two meanings:

1. to meet someone by accident. For example:

I ran into one of my old friends from high school at the shopping mall today.

I don’t want to go to Jerry’s Pub because my ex-girlfriend often goes there, and I don’t want to run into her.

Have you ever run into your boss outside of the office?

2. to encounter a problem. For example:

We’ve run into a problem with one of our investors. He’s decided not to give us any money after all.

I ran into a technical problem while I was trying to set up the Internet connection on my computer.

Our presentation has to go well tomorrow. I hope we don’t run into any problems.

In both cases, the expression means to encounter someone or something by accident. In the first meaning, it could be a positive or a negative situation but, in the second meaning, it’s always negative.


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