cost noun

1 money needed to buy sth

ADJ. considerable, enormous, great, high, huge, prohibitive The high cost of energy was a problem for consumers. The cost of repairs would be prohibitive. | low | escalating, rising | basic | full, overall, total You will have to bear the full cost of the building work. | additional, extra She was unwilling to pay the extra cost to get a room to herself. | average A total of 3.6 million tickets at an average cost of $58 are available for the Games. | gross, net | estimated | budgeted | likely, potential | real | annual, monthly, etc. | replacement What is the current replacement cost of these assets? | capital, start-up (business) The capital cost of these projects (= what it costs to set them up) is some $100 million?then there'll be the operating costs. | marginal (business) Competition will drive the price down near to the marginal cost (= the cost of the labour and materials to produce the product). | unit (business) (= the cost of producing one item) | fixed, variable (business) Fixed costs include rent. | direct, indirect

VERB + COST bear, cover, meet, pay Allow £15 per day to cover the cost of meals. MPs receive allowances to meet the cost of travel. | increase, push up Inflation is pushing up the cost of living beyond our reach. | bring down, cut, lower, reduce | keep down | estimate, put I would put the cost of a new employee at £30,000 a year. | calculate, work out | reimburse

COST + VERB escalate, go up, increase, rise The cost of dental treatment is increasing. | fall, go down

COST + NOUN reduction, savings the pursuit of cost reduction | overrun There were cost overruns on each project. | base It is essential that we operate with the lowest possible cost base and most efficient facilities.

PREP. at a ~ of A new computer system has been installed at a cost of £80,000. | ~ to The cost to the government will be quite high.

PHRASES an increase/a reduction in cost, at no extra cost The hotel offers tea and coffee at no extra cost. | cost of living The cost of living has risen sharply in the last year.

2 costs: money needed to run a business/home, etc.

ADJ. considerable, enormous, great, high, huge | low | escalating, rising We have had to raise our prices because of rising costs. | administration/administrative, fuel, labour, operating, production, (research and) development, running, transport, travel

VERB + COST incur The corporation will pay all costs and expenses incurred with its written consent. | pay | increase | bring down, cut, lower, reduce The company has to find ways of cutting costs. | keep down The use of cheap labour helped to keep costs down. | cover We're hoping that we'll at least cover costs at the conference.

COST + VERB be associated, be involved the costs associated with buying and selling property | escalate, rise

3 effort/loss/damage to achieve sth

ADJ. considerable, enormous, great, heavy, huge They advanced a few hundred metres, but at a heavy cost in life. | dreadful, terrible the terrible cost of the war in death and suffering | real | environmental, financial, human, personal, political, social the environmental cost of nuclear power

VERB + COST outweigh Do the benefits outweigh the costs? | count The town is now counting the cost of its failure to provide adequate flood protection.

PREP. at (a) ~ (to) The raid was foiled, but at a cost: an injured officer who was lucky to escape with his life. He worked non-stop for three months, at considerable cost to his health. | at the ~ of She saved him from the fire but at the cost of her own life. | ~ in I felt a need to please people, whatever the cost in time and energy.

PHRASES at all costs/at any cost You must stop the press finding out at all costs (= whatever it takes to achieve this). | to your cost He's a ruthless businessman, as I know to my cost (= I know from my own bad experience).

4 costs: in a court case

ADJ. legal

VERB + COST incur Both sides incurred costs of over £50,000. | pay He was fined £200 and ordered to pay costs. | be awarded If you win your case you will normally be awarded costs.