pick·up / ˈpikˌəp/ • n. 1. (also pickup truck) a small truck with an enclosed cab and open back.2. an act of collecting a person or goods, esp. in a vehicle: curbside pickup | [as adj.] travel by bus from your local pickup point to your hotel. 3. the reception of signals, esp. interference or noise, by electrical apparatus.4. inf. a casual encounter with someone, with a view to having a sexual relationship. ∎ a person met in such an encounter.5. an improvement in an economic indicator: signs of a pickup in demand.6. a device that produces an electrical signal in response to some other kind of signal or change, in particular: ∎ the cartridge of a record player, carrying the stylus. ∎ a device on a musical instrument, particularly an electric guitar, that converts sound vibrations into electrical signals for amplification.7. Mus. a series of introductory notes leading into the opening part of a tune.8. Fishing a semicircular loop of metal for guiding the line back onto the spool as it is reeled in.• adj. informal and spontaneous: six players had started a full-court pickup basketball game.