Definition of small change in English:

small change


  • 1[mass noun] Coins of low value.

    ‘a couple of pounds in small change’
    • ‘Trouble is, most men do not understand ladies' handbags and can never seem to find the house keys, car keys, small change, or ringing cell phone on command.’
    • ‘This gives me a great view of any abandoned coins in the street - so far this year, we've found a fiver plus loads of small change, all of which goes to a good cause - C's money box.’
    • ‘He kissed her again and moved away from her, picking up bits and pieces from round the room: a handkerchief, his wallet and some small change from his bureaux.’
    • ‘Have you ever gone to a grocery store to exchange your accumulated small change for dollar bills in one of those coin-changing machines?’
    • ‘‘Ah son, I have no small change, would you be able to change a fiver,’ she said to Mickey one day.’
    • ‘Advertisements on radio at the moment say there are millions of pounds in small change lying unused in homes throughout the country.’
    • ‘Traveling Indonesians will need a short period of adjustment in counting small change, whose nominal value is as low as one cent.’
    • ‘He had collected the cash from a jar he used to deposit small change.’
    • ‘Luckily she had left her swimsuit and changed clothes at home, and the only things in her locker were textbooks, and some small change, which could be easily replaced.’
    • ‘The King wanted to replace the cowry shells, used as small change, with copper coins.’
    • ‘These coins even included some useful new denominations in an attempt to ease the problem of a lack of small change by introducing the three-half pence and three-farthing coins.’
    • ‘This system has changed my spending habits: I tend to hang on to my small change, preferring instead to break into £1 coins and notes, in order to boost the amount destined for the money box.’
    • ‘Where possible, small change should be exchanged for larger coins or notes in order to make the work of counting the money a little easier.’
    • ‘Hard-working waitresses reckoned the 16 per cent price hike would eat into their tips because customers would have less money in small change.’
    • ‘The issuance of the new coins is to meet people's need for small change, as well as to support cash transactions, the bank said in a statement.’
    • ‘In short, why should a drug addict rob a convenience store for small change when he or she could score big cash by stealing someone's identity instead?’
    • ‘Examples of the restored coinage and the new small change that was also introduced will be displayed in the exhibition.’
    • ‘Although the parking meters are functioning on the whole in King William's Town, it is always a nuisance having to remember to carry small change.’
    • ‘Where once they merely asked for small change, today some of their number demand cash and let fly with a mouthful of abuse at people who refuse.’
    • ‘Every Friday for the last year the children have been taking their spare pennies or any small change from around the house to school.’
    coins, change, coppers, silver, cash
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1Something trivial.
      ‘his wrongdoings were small change compared to a lot of happenings in the city’
      • ‘But that is small change when compared with the money, jobs and business opportunities that could be generated within if the mine goes into production.’
      • ‘But this spending is small change in a world of $90-million contracts.’
      • ‘The £150,000 cost of replacing it seems small change compared to the 1986 total expenditure but given the extra pressures on council cash in 2003 it is still a tidy sum of money.’
      • ‘The precise size of the world economy may not matter much from a policy point of view, though a $14 trillion difference is hardly small change.’
      • ‘Smaller companies have lower cost bases, and they are more likely to be able to get value from 10-million-barrel fields which would represent small change to the majors.’
      • ‘This is small change compared to the devastation caused to friends and family by the loss of their loved ones.’
      • ‘But this was small change when compared to the pay taken in by the top executives.’
      • ‘That's small change compared to the interruptions facing today's superstars.’
      • ‘But the estimated £8m spent by the government on its defence team is small change compared with the cost to the UK and US governments on the trial and appeal.’
      • ‘That the women's cricket team now has a sponsor - even it if is a stereotypical women's product, jewellery, is small change compared to the level of support for the men's team.’
      • ‘This being said, revenues related to online gaming have been, to date, negligible, but this may be small change if online gaming really takes off.’
      • ‘Okay, that's small change compared with the billions involved in electronics exports, and a theme park doesn't exactly mesh with ambitions of a high-tech future.’
      • ‘But that's small change to the former CEO, who's rumoured to be hanging out for $20 million.’
      • ‘US $25 million is but a small change compared to some of the oil contracts we've handled in the past, but I guess beggars can't be choosers.’
      • ‘Our sources agree that the wealthy citizens of Athens conducted their business in minae, and that in these circles a drachma was small change.’
      • ‘If one adds the $3 billion to $5 billion cost of a $30 to $50 tax cut for the average worker, one sees that it is small change.’
      • ‘All the same, the dollars the consumer sector is losing at the pump are small change compared to inflating home equity (coupled with rising incomes).’
      • ‘In the scheme of things, that's small change compared to the $1 billion the NIH has estimated will be needed to cure Parkinson's.’
      • ‘That's small change compared with the $5 billion it estimates will be paid out in compensation over coming decades.’
      • ‘But that is small change compared to the leader of Milton Keynes council, who takes more than £32,000.’


small change