A slot is a narrow notch, groove or opening, such as a keyway in machinery or a slit for a coin in a vending machine. The word can also refer to a position in a group, series or sequence:

Slot-based schedules are often used to prioritize tasks according to the amount of time available. They can be beneficial for organizing meetings with staff, clients or stakeholders, as well as setting deadlines to meet important work objectives. When using this scheduling method, it’s important to communicate updates and revisions to all staff members.

In slot gaming, players insert cash or, in “ticket-in, ticket-out” machines, a paper ticket with a barcode into a designated slot. When activated, the machine displays reels and symbols that correspond to a theme. The reels may spin several times to rearrange the symbols, and if a winning combination appears, the player receives a payout based on the machine’s paytable.

In aviation, a “slot” is an allocated time for an aircraft to take off or land at an airport, determined by air traffic control. A slot allows airlines to avoid delays and conserve fuel when an airport experiences congestion. Increasingly, airlines are adopting central flow management to improve their slot utilization and to reduce flight delays. This has helped to improve efficiency and lower operating costs, while reducing the environmental impact of aviation. However, these gains have been offset by the growing number of airports encountering congestion.