a one-way ticket to (somewhere or something)

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a one-way ticket to (somewhere or something)

A specific, usually negative, result of an action, event, or situation. If he doesn't restructure his company soon, he's buying a one-way ticket to bankruptcy. Getting home late will be a one-way ticket to being grounded.
See also: ticket

a one-way ticket

If you describe something as a one-way ticket to a particular situation or state, you mean that it is certain to lead to that situation or state. Having strong feelings for someone when those feelings aren't returned can be very painful. It represents a one-way ticket to unhappiness. The secretarial jobs she'd had since leaving college were a one-way ticket to nowhere, professionally speaking.
See also: ticket