worth·​while | \ ˈwərth-ˈhwī(-ə)l How to pronounce worthwhile (audio) , -ˈwī(-ə)l\

Definition of worthwhile

1 : being worth the time or effort spent worthwhile preparations
2 : worthy sense 1 a worthwhile cause

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Other Words from worthwhile

worthwhileness noun

Examples of worthwhile in a Sentence

The money is for a worthwhile cause. Seeing my children's joy made building the tree house all worthwhile. Is it worthwhile to try to fix my computer?
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Recent Examples on the Web

Wages and productivity are higher in the expensive metro areas even though higher housing prices make it in many cases not worthwhile for people to move there. Matthew Yglesias, Vox, "America’s dual housing crisis and what Democrats plan to do about it, explained," 30 July 2019 Not the circus that has only grown bigger and louder since his retirement, but the investment of being a part of a team, and the people who make doing so worthwhile. Rob Mahoney, SI.com, "Spurs Assistant Tim Duncan Always Had the Teaching Gene," 23 July 2019 Generally speaking, the highest bidder is the one willing to make the most cuts to make the purchase worthwhile. Ruth Simon, WSJ, "Red Wing, Iconic U.S. Shoe Maker, Labors Mightily to Bring Production Home," 12 July 2019 But for many students admitted to Hampshire, the inherent risks became overwhelming — and ultimately not worthwhile. Alison Kuznitz, BostonGlobe.com, "Amid turmoil at Hampshire College, just 15 take the leap to join freshman class," 30 June 2019 Nonetheless, each day brought us bountiful natural beauty that made the outings worthwhile. Doug Hansen, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Warm-weather adventures at Mammoth," 26 June 2019 There are days where players feel homesick, days when a player goes 0-for-5 and days when playing in 110-degree heat in the Arizona desert makes some question whether all the work is worthwhile. Kerry Crowley, The Mercury News, "Power-hitting teenager Marco Luciano gives San Francisco Giants a reason to dream," 27 June 2019 This whole experiment has been worthwhile just to hear this. Chad Finn, BostonGlobe.com, "Sean McDonough tops cast of rotating Red Sox announcers," 27 June 2019 And even if the committee does not propose any changes that will radically alter the functioning of Congress, gradual improvements may still be worthwhile. Richard Skinner, Vox, "Technology and transparency: the path to a modern Congress?," 26 June 2019

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

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First Known Use of worthwhile

1662, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for worthwhile

Last Updated

4 Aug 2019

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The first known use of worthwhile was in 1662

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English Language Learners Definition of worthwhile

: worth doing or getting : good enough, important enough, etc., to be worth spending time, effort, or money on


worth·​while | \ ˈwərth-ˈhwīl How to pronounce worthwhile (audio) , -ˈwīl\

Kids Definition of worthwhile

: being worth the time spent or effort used a worthwhile trip

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Comments on worthwhile

What made you want to look up worthwhile? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


marked by turns or indirection

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