Definition of top something up in English:

top something up

phrasal verb

  • 1Add to a number or amount to bring it up to a certain level.

    ‘a 0.5 per cent bonus is offered to top up savings rates’
    • ‘To pay for the scheme the EU would put up £500,000 and Swindon Council would top it up with £350,000.’
    • ‘Jones, he said, gets disability living allowance of £155 every two weeks with a further £30 to top it up.’
    • ‘Mr Warren said Carter then proceeded to help herself to the building society money, topping it up from the bank account when it ran low.’
    • ‘Miss Foster said: ‘We are hoping to break the £10,000 barrier this year and hopefully the company might top it up but we will have to wait and see.’’
    • ‘The maximum contribution each year is £3,600, which means that you pay £2,808 and the Inland Revenue tops it up by the standard tax rate of 22%.’
    • ‘The government will top it up with 1 per cent of GDP every year between now and 2025.’
    • ‘Virgin Money director Gordon Maw says: ‘Child Trust Funds need to become the central focus of our savings for our children, so the key is how we encourage parents to top them up regularly.’’
    • ‘Scottish and Southern Energy's deputy chairman Ian Grant topped his holding up with a £12,680 buy.’
    • ‘They raised £460,000 on their own and topped it up with a bank loan from the Bank of Scotland, but were still £40,000 short.’
    • ‘But the government only tops it up to that level if you are on a full state pension.’
    1. 1.1Fill up a glass or other partly full container.
      ‘he topped up our glasses and filled his own’
      • ‘Somewhere between the boiler (at the front door) and the radiator in the bathroom, water leaks out of our supposedly closed system, so we have to top it up regularly.’
      • ‘She gave a chuckle and joined them at the table with a half cup of coffee, topping it up with milk until it was almost full.’
      • ‘He used to take nearly empty marmalade jars, top them up with hot water, and put them outside the kitchen window to attract wasps away from the house.’
      • ‘She drank almost half of it in one swig and then topped it up again and Mr. Hamilton didn't bat an eyelid.’
      • ‘Neil Hinton, defending, said during the evening her glass had been topped up several times.’
      • ‘They fill their own Thermoses, top them up with coffee.’
      • ‘He filled the canteen, drank half of it, and topped it up again.’
      • ‘He swallowed half of it immediately; sighing as it warmed his stomach, before topping the glass back up again and slowly putting the bottle away.’
      • ‘I woke to find Graham out in the garden carrying out some much needed maintenance on the fish pond, topping it up with fresh water and pulling out some weed.’
      • ‘With every handshake my glass was topped up with a nip of whisky and by 1am I was feeling rather wobbly.’
      fill, refill, refresh, freshen, replenish, recharge, resupply
      supplement, add to, augment
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2Add credit to a pay-as-you-go mobile phone account.