Definition of on hold in English:

on hold


  • 1Waiting to be connected while making a telephone call.

    ‘‘I'll just see if he's free,’ Rachel said, and put me on hold’
    • ‘People trying to contact the council by phone have complained of being put on hold for long periods or waiting’
    • ‘However for consumers, five minutes of waiting on hold, can undo years of advertising and brand exposure.’
    • ‘People trapped in fires don't want to be stuck on hold listening to Vivaldi's Four Seasons’
    • ‘Before the befuddled caller could reply, she placed him on hold again.’
    • ‘Businesses even need a licence to play music on their telephone line when customers are put on hold.’
    • ‘I called this place and asked to be put on hold, curious what the music would sound like.’
    • ‘She put me on hold and then sure enough, I was talking with Jim Holman.’
    • ‘I was put on hold, and when the person came back I was told that all appeared to be in order.’
    • ‘The call was charged at premium rate, I was put on hold until nearly £5 of credit had been used.’
    • ‘Honestly, what a nerve - them ringing you up to put you on hold until they have someone free to talk to you.’
    1. 1.1Temporarily not being dealt with or pursued.
      ‘he has had to put his career on hold’
      • ‘Then, once he had sampled the life of the full-time sportsman, he decided to stay on, and put his studies on hold.’
      • ‘I want to put everything on hold and take off into the hills for a few days.’
      • ‘Many deals have been put on hold, and may be shelved for months if the market falls flat on its face for a prolonged period.’
      • ‘In effect, this means the roadworks programme has been put on hold until after the April meeting.’
      • ‘When he found out about his dad's illness, he was busy writing and recording his new album - but all that went on hold.’
      • ‘We believe it is quite proper that those changes should be put on hold pending that investigation.’
      • ‘But discussions look set to be put on hold because of an ongoing problem regarding the new access road.’
      • ‘When he didn't hear from us, he assumed the project must be on hold.’
      • ‘It will not be surprising if all football activities are put on hold because of these ongoing squabbles.’
      • ‘The project was then put on hold indefinitely until such time that funding could be made available.’
      postpone, put off, put back, hold off, defer, delay, adjourn, shelve, suspend, hold in abeyance
      put over, take a rain check on
      put on ice, put on the back burner, put in cold storage, mothball
      remit, respite
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