lee·​way | \ ˈlē-ˌwā How to pronounce leeway (audio) \

Definition of leeway

1 : an allowable margin of freedom or variation : tolerance The new rules allow managers greater leeway in making decisions.
2a : off-course lateral movement of a ship when underway The sailboat's centerboard helps to reduce leeway.
b : the angle between the heading and the track of an airplane

Examples of leeway in a Sentence

They give their students leeway to try new things. you will be given some leeway in choosing how to carry out the project
Recent Examples on the Web Soaring oil and gas prices spurred by the Russian invasion of Ukraine are temporarily giving more fiscal leeway for the former French colony. Salah Slimani, Bloomberg.com, 28 Mar. 2022 Guggenheim analyst Shahriar Pourreza said utilities have long counted on low gas prices to keep supply costs down, giving them greater leeway to invest in their systems without major rate increases. Katherine Blunt, WSJ, 14 Mar. 2022 Second, there's a wide range in how much different types of chargers cost, and individual states have a lot of leeway deciding what kinds of chargers will go on their roads. Cnn Staff, CNN, 2 Mar. 2022 Berman said that the congressional attention of the era was typically focused on legislative efforts to curb the leeway judges had in sentencing. Tierney Sneed, CNN, 11 Apr. 2022 Assuming the Hertz Polestar rentals work the same way a Hertz Tesla rental does, customers can expect some form of free DC fast charging and probably some leeway in regard to returning the car with at least 10 percent state of charge remaining. Jonathan M. Gitlin, Ars Technica, 4 Apr. 2022 But the Bulls balanced this disparate shooting with blunders that allowed the Knicks leeway to retain a small lead. Julia Poe, chicagotribune.com, 29 Mar. 2022 This leeway comes at no cost, however, to its effective atmospherics, which sink into the bones like an unexpected twilight chill. Guy Lodge, Variety, 25 Mar. 2022 That leaves the Braves financial leeway to buff out the rotation and bullpen and add an outfielder. Gabe Lacques, USA TODAY, 15 Mar. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'leeway.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of leeway

1669, in the meaning defined at sense 2a

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Dictionary Entries Near leeway

leeward tide


lee wheel

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Statistics for leeway

Last Updated

14 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Leeway.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/leeway. Accessed 17 May. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on leeway

Nglish: Translation of leeway for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of leeway for Arabic Speakers


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