Definition of avail in English:

avail

verb

[with object]
  • 1literary Help or benefit.

    ‘no amount of struggle availed Charles’
    • ‘Of course, none of this careful planning avails me in the slightest if I don't manage to actually write anything.’
    • ‘This time around, Daffy seems to realize he's losing the game, but all of his extra caution avails him naught.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘But their wealth avails them not at all this time.’
    • ‘If such action be tainted over much by self-interest it probably will not avail the accused.’
    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’
    no object ‘students in the district avail of the free meal scheme in schools’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘The visitors were availing themselves of the opportunity to discover the multi-faceted profile of the nation's premier organisation.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘You need to avail yourself of every resource that we have here.’
    • ‘He has already served substantial time in jail and hasn't availed himself of those 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 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.’
    • ‘Depending on the seasons as many as 150 people would gather in the area to avail themselves of its resources.’
    • ‘A number of publishers availed themselves of the advertising opportunities and commissioned Smith to write books for them.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘Until then, it is anticipated that more families will avail themselves of the opportunity to send their children to camp.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘There is a nature trail in the community near my home, which I avail myself of at every opportunity.’
    • ‘But most Indians don't avail themselves of this opportunity to customize their food intake.’
    use, make use of, take advantage of, utilize, employ
    View synonyms

noun

mass nounusually 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’
    • ‘Last-ditch efforts to avert war in the second week of March were to no avail.’
    • ‘I keep nagging him to get over it and get on with posting but to no avail.’
    • ‘Police vans were pelted with bottles and cans, and speakers tried to calm the crowd, but to no avail.’
    • ‘We waited for this building work to commence but it was all to no avail.’
    • ‘For the past two years, members have tried to scare the deer off, to no avail.’
    • ‘She was doing a sterling job of trying to wake him up but to no avail.’
    • ‘Since then he has been passed back and forth between the NHS and Inland Revenue but to no avail.’
    • ‘The group banged on the door to alert the sleeping occupants to no avail.’
    • ‘Mr Holmes said he and three friends immediately launched their own boat and searched the area but to no avail.’
    • ‘A search party had been sent out the previous evening, to no avail, so they'd gone out again at dawn.’
    • ‘The pair went on holiday to Brazil recently, apparently to give their love lives a boost but to no avail.’
    • ‘We have got a petition, written letters, been to meetings, but to no avail as they just do not listen.’
    • ‘He said he heard someone shout the man had got to the bank side, and used some bike lights to search for him, but to no avail.’
    • ‘Police say an extensive search was carried out immediately but to no avail.’
    • ‘The Allerton residents filled in countless petitions against the closure, to no avail.’
    • ‘I have tried various remedies, including cutting the plant right back, but to no avail.’
    • ‘My protestations about the lack of evidence of benefit in such procedures were to no avail.’
    • ‘We have written asking for councillors to visit to inspect the damage and poor state of repairs, to no avail.’
    • ‘After a few frantic phone calls to no avail, the decision to ad-lib was made.’
    • ‘Trying to find an explanation, I consulted several modern textbooks to no avail.’
    in vain, without success, unsuccessfully, vainly, with no result, fruitlessly, to no purpose
    View synonyms

Phrases

  • avail someone nothing

    • archaic (of an action) be of no help at all to someone.

      ‘this protest availed her nothing’
      • ‘Such rights may have availed us nothing, had the client run into financial difficulties.’
      • ‘Climbing trees or diving into water will avail you nothing with a tiger.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘I'm afraid that your skills, such as they are, will avail you nothing.’

Phrasal Verbs

  • avail oneself of

    • Use or take advantage of (an opportunity or available resource)

      ‘my daughter did not avail herself of my advice’
      use, make use of, take advantage of, utilize, employ
      View synonyms

Origin

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’.

Pronunciation

avail

/əˈveɪl/