Definition of avail in English:


See synonyms for avail

Translate avail into Spanish

transitive verb

[with object]
  • 1 literary Help or benefit.

    ‘no amount of struggle availed Charles’
    • ‘But their wealth avails them not at all this time.’
    • ‘This time around, Daffy seems to realize he's losing the game, but all of his extra caution avails him naught.’
    • ‘Of course, none of this careful planning avails me in the slightest if I don't manage to actually write anything.’
    • ‘If such action be tainted over much by self-interest it probably will not avail the accused.’
    • ‘But it avails little if we reach agreement on this doctrine or that but are in fundamental disagreement about the sacramental nature of the Church in inseparable unity with Christ and the salvation he bestows.’
    help, aid, assist, benefit, be of use to, be useful to, profit, be of advantage to, be of service to
    View synonyms
  • 2Indian Use or take advantage of (an opportunity or available resource)

    ‘you can avail discounts on food’
    • ‘There is a nature trail in the community near my home, which I avail myself of at every opportunity.’
    • ‘After the refreshments, the general public were admitted to the field with between 5,000 and 6,000 availing themselves of the opportunity of being present.’
    • ‘The visitors were availing themselves of the opportunity to discover the multi-faceted profile of the nation's premier organisation.’
    • ‘Some of the women are fully veiled in black, but most seem to be availing themselves of the opportunity to show off their latest purchases.’
    • ‘He has already served substantial time in jail and hasn't availed himself of those opportunities.’
    • ‘If you're not equal in outcome, well that's you're fault - you didn't work hard enough, you didn't avail yourself of our educational opportunities.’
    • ‘Neither her Syrian ancestors in Brazil, nor my Dutch-German forebears in the United States could avail themselves of that sort of opportunity.’
    • ‘I would urge as many people as possible to avail themselves of the opportunity to sign the petition to ensure that a strongly supported message is sent to Canberra.’
    • ‘Until then, it is anticipated that more families will avail themselves of the opportunity to send their children to camp.’
    • ‘But most Indians don't avail themselves of this opportunity to customize their food intake.’
    • ‘The temperature was in the high thirties right up until nightfall and thus we took every opportunity to avail ourselves of shade and air-conditioning.’
    • ‘I avail myself of this opportunity to send you my warmest greetings.’
    • ‘The owner may wish to avail himself of this opportunity to acquaint himself with his surroundings.’
    • ‘Can we be assured that he will avail himself of the opportunity to put his classroom expertise into practice?’
    • ‘Like other closed systems of thought, Hegel's philosophy avails itself of the dubious advantage of not having to allow any criticism whatsoever.’
    • ‘More and more senior citizens are availing themselves of the opportunity to enjoy the amenities offered in what many regard as the most exciting and vibrant city in the world, Las Vegas.’
    • ‘Though the earliest Macedonian immigrants arrived in the United States with little or no formal education, they quickly availed themselves of new opportunities to improve their literacy skills.’
    • ‘A number of publishers availed themselves of the advertising opportunities and commissioned Smith to write books for them.’
    • ‘You need to avail yourself of every resource that we have here.’
    • ‘Depending on the seasons as many as 150 people would gather in the area to avail themselves of its resources.’



/əˈvāl/ /əˈveɪl/


usually in phrases of no avail or to no avail
  • Use or benefit.

    ‘he begged her to reconsider, but to no avail’
    • ‘calls to tech support have been of no avail’
    • ‘Latin was of little avail in the practical affairs of life’
    in vain, without success, unsuccessfully, vainly, with no result, fruitlessly, to no purpose
    View synonyms



/əˈvāl/ /əˈveɪl/


    avail someone nothing
    • (of an action) be of no help at all to someone.

      ‘this protest availed her nothing’
      • ‘I would suggest that his flying start to war has availed him nothing but the intensified scorn of the nation.’
      • ‘‘It withered my heart,’ he wrote in his diary, but his presence could avail her nothing now.’
      • ‘Such rights may have availed us nothing, had the client run into financial difficulties.’
      • ‘I'm afraid that your skills, such as they are, will avail you nothing.’
      • ‘Climbing trees or diving into water will avail you nothing with a tiger.’

Phrasal Verbs

    avail of
    mainly formal
    • avail oneself of something or avail of somethingUse or take advantage of an opportunity or available resource.

      ‘my daughter did not avail herself of my advice’
      • ‘students in the district avail of the free meal plan in schools’


Middle English from obsolete vail ‘be of use or value’ (apparently on the pattern of pairs such as amount, mount), from Old French valoir, from Latin valere ‘be strong, be of value’.