Definition of economical in English:


See synonyms for economical

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  • 1Giving good value or service in relation to the amount of money, time, or effort spent.

    ‘a small, economical car’
    • ‘This map would promote a coherent, efficient, and economical wargaming effort.’
    • ‘On more economical cars like yours the fuel savings are less attractive, although a London driver would no doubt be particularly attracted by the congestion charge exemption.’
    • ‘I am considerate, drive to the speed limit and also drive a car that's more economical than my old one.’
    • ‘Some believe it would be more economical in the long term just to buy new helicopters.’
    • ‘Higher upfront costs might be more economical in the long run.’
    • ‘Pastures are often the most economical way to provide forage for ruminant animals.’
    • ‘What is the easiest, most economical way to get rid of the standing water?’
    • ‘The fastest, most economical way to produce new houseplants is to divide them from existing ones.’
    • ‘Thus it is important to make groundwater exploration as economical as possible with the highest possible success rate.’
    • ‘The color of the terrace railings was chosen to make them economical and relatively unnoticeable.’
    • ‘Not only were the cars quick, but they were very economical as well.’
    • ‘To begin with, gravel is very economical compared to other paving materials.’
    • ‘You might be surprised, however, to discover that you have an extremely economical car in your driveway.’
    • ‘Motorcycle gloves, and even common workman's gloves can be economical alternatives for beginners.’
    • ‘Unfortunately, the solution to this problem is neither simple nor economical.’
    • ‘Although not really suitable nor economical for that purpose, it did keep up the gas supply during the emergency.’
    • ‘They are reasonably inexpensive and economical to run.’
    • ‘Competitively priced, economical to run and with plenty of comfort and space, this is a very practical motor.’
    • ‘We tried a simple, economical solution to this problem: combining the camera with a pair of binoculars.’
    • ‘So ever since then, I've been trying to figure out an economical solution for our curtain problem.’
    cheap, inexpensive, low-cost, low-price, low-budget, budget, economy, reasonable, reasonably priced, cut-price, cut-rate, discount, discounted, bargain, bargain-basement, cost-effective, effective, efficient, energy-efficient, fuel-efficient, energy-saving, fuel-saving
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    1. 1.1(of a person or lifestyle) careful not to waste money or resources.
      ‘he was economical in all areas of life’
      • ‘From the 1950s to 1960s, he was renowned for his economical lifestyle.’
      • ‘And it is time that we all realise that governments only have limited powers to change and influence while economical actors are the leaders of change.’
      • ‘In a quest to find the most economical driver, local dignitaries and motor industry figures teamed up for the marathon, hoping to learn a little about making their fuel go further.’
      • ‘I'm economical, it must be the business student in me!’
      • ‘My mother was economical and a good manager, so we never went without any necessities.’
      • ‘The Deputy Prime Minister said his Economy Ministry returned 20 million leva to the budget last year, because they were economical.’
      • ‘It means that economical users will have an opportunity to invest into a modern and future-proof rather than into an obsolescent platform.’
      • ‘I have heard about him from some of my economical colleagues.’
      • ‘He was incredibly economical and inventive, making a great variety of prints in all sorts of different colours.’
      • ‘He was very economical in the way he used his materials.’
      thrifty, careful, careful with money, provident, prudent, canny, sensible, frugal, sparing, scrimping, economizing, abstemious
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    2. 1.2Using no more of something than is necessary.
      ‘this chassis is economical in metal and therefore light in weight’
      • ‘Somewhat surprisingly, standard 118 bhp models are very economical with fuel.’



/ˌekəˈnämək(ə)l/ /ˌɛkəˈnɑmək(ə)l/ /ˌēkəˈnämək(ə)l/ /ˌikəˈnɑmək(ə)l/



    be economical with the truth
    • Lie or deliberately withhold information.

      ‘the government spokesman was often economical with the truth’
      • ‘At best, voters think the government was economical with the truth, at worst they believe it deliberately lied.’
      • ‘There has never been, and there will never be, any attempt either to hide or to be economical with the truth.’
      • ‘However, after last Tuesday's reshuffle, we can only assume that the First Minister's pronouncements - to us, to others, on the record and on camera - were a case of his being economical with the truth.’
      • ‘Yes, some key players were economical with the truth, and it is a bit surprising that a Prime Minister normally prone to micro-managing potential crises allowed this matter to be handled by others.’
      • ‘Does the pressure group Shoppers In Europe really believe that prices would go down by 15% if the UK joined the euro, or is they just being economical with the truth?’
      • ‘I felt she was economical with the truth when she felt under attack.’
      • ‘Either he has been dramatically misled by his civil servants or, with possible prodding from the special relationship with Washington, he was being extremely economical with the truth.’
      • ‘On the democratic front, successive governments gained power by being economical with the truth, and once in office, lied blatantly about their intentions.’
      • ‘Therefore the Executive's claim to have implemented ‘free personal care’ for the elderly is simply being economical with the truth.’
      • ‘Was the prime minister economical with the truth?’


      Mid 19th century popularized by a statement given in evidence by Sir Robert Armstrong, British cabinet secretary, in the ‘Spycatcher’ trial (1986), conducted to prevent publication of a book by a former MI5 employee.