(redirected from nickel-and-diming)
Also found in: Thesaurus, Idioms.


(nĭk′əl-ən-dīm′) Informal
1. Involving or paying only a small amount of money: a nickel-and-dime job.
2. Minor; small-time: "a nickel-and-dime operation run out of a single borrowed room" (New York).
v. nick·el-and-dimed, nick·el-and-dim·ing, nick·el-and-dimes or nick·eled-and-dimed or nick·el·ing-and-dim·ing or nick·els-and-dimes
To spend very little money.
1. To drain or destroy bit by bit, especially financially: nickel-and-dimed the project to death.
2. To accumulate in small amounts: "nickel-and-diming a substantial bankroll together" (Newsweek).


small; insignificant; involving small amounts of money
vb (tr)
to wear or bring someone down by small-scale incursions, penalties etc


adj., v. nick•el-and-dimed nick•eled-and-dimed, nick•el-and-dim•ing nick•el•ing-and-dim•ing. Informal. adj.
1. insignificant; trivial; petty.
2. to expose to financial hardship by the accumulation of small expenses.
3. to hinder, annoy, or harass with trivialities or nonessentials.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Verb1.nickel-and-dime - spend money frugally; spend as little as possible
expend, spend, drop - pay out; "spend money"
2.nickel-and-dime - accumulate gradually; "she nickeled-and-dimed together a small house for her family"
scrape up, scrape, scratch, come up - gather (money or other resources) together over time; "She had scraped together enough money for college"; "they scratched a meager living"
Adj.1.nickel-and-dime - of minor importance; "a nickel-and-dime operation run out of a single rented room"; "a small-time actor"
unimportant - not important; "a relatively unimportant feature of the system"; "the question seems unimportant"
2.nickel-and-dime - low-paying; "a nickel-and-dime job"
cheap, inexpensive - relatively low in price or charging low prices; "it would have been cheap at twice the price"; "inexpensive family restaurants"


(US inf)
adjbillig; criminal etcklein
vt to nickel-and-dime somebodyjdm sehr kleine (Geld)beträge abknöpfen (inf)
References in periodicals archive ?
Airlines can make even the most patient passenger grumpy at times, with their nickel-and-diming ways and lackluster customer service.
"We're in the business of connecting people to what's important in their lives and we do that without nickel-and-diming our customers."
Meanwhile, such nickel-and-diming is annoying, but we think both walkers and drivers should concentrate on their classes and not worry too much about who's paying what to get there.