What is correct: a couple hours OR a couple of hours?

I have always used the expression "a couple of hours." On the other hand, now I see every use of the term on the web, in mainstream published novels, in published essays, etc., expressed as "a couple hours." This usage doesn't seem to make any sense, but I can't find anything published... show more I have always used the expression "a couple of hours." On the other hand, now I see every use of the term on the web, in mainstream published novels, in published essays, etc., expressed as "a couple hours." This usage doesn't seem to make any sense, but I can't find anything published that uses "a couple of hours."
4 answers 4