Definition of rip-off in English:



  • 1A fraud or swindle, especially something that is grossly overpriced.

    ‘designer label clothes are just expensive rip-offs’
    • ‘The New York attorney general who has made his name exposing sharp practices on Wall Street, has now turned his attention to alleged rip-offs by pharmaceutical companies.’
    • ‘These ‘explorers’ often claim to be benevolent defenders of freedom and fighters against rip-offs by major corporations or spying by government agents.’
    • ‘In other words, its profit margins are around 80%, which makes it one of the UK's biggest financial rip-offs.’
    • ‘The frequency of this consumer crusade by our guardians in Wapping has led most people to believe that these cheap bits of degradable plastic are nothing but a rip-off of the highest order.’
    • ‘The rip-offs can vary from interest overcharging to the failure to set off loan accounts against accounts which are in credit.’
    • ‘Payment protection insurance is one of the biggest financial rip-offs ever.’
    • ‘Store cards are among the UK's biggest financial rip-offs - and yet we have around 18 ½ million store-card accounts, with 23 million cards in circulation.’
    • ‘Of course, while a few of these products qualify for the prized honour of being a Best Buy, most are mediocre or, even worse, complete rip-offs.’
    • ‘Remind me how the FSA protects investors from unscrupulous companies and salespeople and rip-off products?’
    • ‘And perhaps more importantly, most authors don't want to name names when it comes to pointing out bad products or rip-off hosting companies, of which there are far too many.’
    • ‘Most auction sites are concerned about the effects that fraudulent transactions have on their business and, as a result, have introduced a number of mechanisms designed to reduce to protect customers against such rip-offs.’
    • ‘In my view, and speaking as someone who worked in this industry for over eleven years, payment protection insurance is one of the most grotesque financial rip-offs ever.’
    • ‘Home insurance (buildings and contents cover) and mortgage payment protection insurance (accident, sickness and unemployment cover) from mortgage lenders are rip-offs, too.’
    • ‘But as appealing as these offers sound, they're usually rip-offs.’
    • ‘These rip-offs include payment protection insurance (optional life, accident, sickness and unemployment cover) and card protection plans (cover for lost or stolen plastic).’
    • ‘Unfortunately, this issue is just the latest in a long line of disguised consumer rip-offs in the name of consumer protection, created by government enforced agricultural cartel marketing organizations.’
    • ‘As such it's one of the most monumental rip-offs we know of - one which will, of course, be bought with taxpayers' hard-earned cash wherever it's deployed.’
    • ‘Nonetheless, booking a trip online is a difficult sandbox to sift through, a landscape rife with rip-offs and reverse auctions, great deals and time-share come-ons.’
    fraud, swindle, fraudulent scheme, confidence trick, mare's nest
    con, con trick, scam, flimflam, gyp, kite
    ramp, twist, swizz, daylight robbery
    rip, shakedown, hustle, grift, bunco, boondoggle
    do, flanker, have
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 An inferior imitation of something.
      ‘rip-offs of all the latest styles’
      • ‘A while back there was a discussion on this forum about how the film was basically a rip-off of some director or company.’
      • ‘Okay, so we all know that Hollywood thrives on the unoriginal - homages, remakes, sequels, adaptations and jes'plain rip-offs.’
      • ‘Then you can count on some no-name studio to produce rip-offs of those blockbusters.’
      • ‘And it may make rip-off artists think twice before churning out knock-offs.’
      • ‘You gotta love them for their originality, even if the movies featured in this collection are a mixed bag of campy flicks, classic genre rip-offs, and foreign titles.’
      • ‘He was first lionised by the press and then held unfairly responsible for the subsequent slew of inferior rip-offs by other directors.’
      • ‘Everywhere there were tachiste paintings that seemed absorbed in sentimental assertions of the beauty of abstraction, coexisting with touristic-looking carved-wood rip-offs of traditional African sculpture.’
      • ‘Most early house records were disco rip-offs.’



/ˈrip ˌôf/