Definition of centavo in English:



  • A monetary unit of Mexico, Brazil, and certain other countries (formerly including Portugal), equal to one hundredth of the basic unit.

    • ‘The strike comes after months of demonstrations and protests over the government's deregulation of the oil industry, which has allowed oil companies to increase petroleum prices by 55 centavos to P1.50 per gallon.’
    • ‘The latest price rise in October saw the cost of fuel jump by 30 centavos a litre.’
    • ‘I don't want to give one centavo extra to the postal service,’ I told the employee, a pleasant enough person who probably understands better than I do what a mess that post office and the entire system are.’
    • ‘Twenty-five centavos is less than two American pennies.’
    • ‘In Mexico we only pay centavos for such small bunches.’
    • ‘A kilogram of the most sought after commodity - white office paper - sells for 15 centavos.’
    • ‘The figure is based on an average price increase of 1.66 dollars a barrel for oil and the depreciation of the peso by 33 centavos in the last quarter of 1999, according to the group.’
    • ‘An old man, ‘nothing but skin and bones’, offers to carry the young man's suitcase for 30 centavos.’
    • ‘Back then, each ride cost between sixty centavos and one Boliviano and could take anything from ten to forty minutes, depending on the traffic and other passengers.’
    • ‘Shares of Metro Pacific, which have been listed on the Philippine stock exchange since May 1990, soared to a 3-year high of 63 centavos on September 8, almost triple its low of 24 centavos on June 16.’
    • ‘Importers will pay about 8 centavos more to acquire dollars.’
    • ‘This meant that every time my tyres developed a puncture or went a bit flat - roughly once a day - I had to find a mechanic's workshop, and pay forty centavos for a quick top-up of air.’


Spanish and Portuguese, from Latin centum ‘a hundred’.