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Flashcards in CAE Exam Preparation Deck (1764)
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Have a go at sb (UK)

To criticize someone.
e.g.: My Dad's always having a go at me about getting a proper job.



(US usually turn) an opportunity to play in a game, or to do or use something.
e.g.: Hey, it's Ken's go now! You've just had your go.
Please can I have a go (= can I ride) on your bike?
I'll have a go at driving for a while if you're tired.


More holes than Swiss cheese

To have a lot of problems. e.g.: I have read the proposal, it has more holes than Swiss cheese.


Chalk and cheese

It is used to describe two things that are completely different. e.g.: They are brother and sister, but they are like chalk and cheese.


Big cheese

It refers to the boss, or the person in charge of something. e.g.: Let's make sure the office is clean, the big cheese will be there on the weekend.


To see red

To suddenly become very angry. e.g.: When he laughed in my face I saw red and hit him.


To catch someone red-handed

To catch someone in the act of doing something wrong (private or illegal). e.g.: I caught my sister red-handed reading my diary.


In the red (informal)

In debt, owing money. "in the red" can refer to a person or the person's bank account. e.g.: I don't understand why he's always in the red as he has a very good job.


Once in a blue moon

Very rarely, hardly ever. e.g.: When I was younger I used to go the cinema about once a month but now I go once in a blue moon.


Sleep on sth (phrasal verb)

To delay making a decision about something important until the next day so that you have time to consider it carefully.


Weigh sth up

Think carefully about advantages and disadvantages of a decision


Run sth by sb (phrasal v. informal)

To tell someone about something so that person can give their opinion about it:
Would you run your idea by me one more time?


Think ahead (phrasal verb)

Think carefully about the future and what might happen.


Allow for sth

To consider something when you are planning something:
We allowed for living expenses of £20 a day.
[+ -ing verb] You should allow for the plane being delayed.
We have to allow for the possibility that we might not finish on schedule.


Stand out (phrasal verb)

-To be very noticeable
The black lettering really stands out on that orange background.

-To be much better than other similar things or people
We had lots of good applicants for the job, but one stood out from the rest.


Bring sb/sth along (phrasal verb)

To take someone or something with you
Can I bring a friend along to the party?


Desire word family

Noun [C/U] = Desire
Verb = Desire
Adjective (describing sth worth having) = Desirable
Negative adjective = Undesirable
Adverb (from adjective) = Desirably
Noun [U] (from adjective) = Desirability
Negative noun [C] (somebody/sth that isn't wanted) = Undesirable
Adjective (from past participle) = Desired


Origin word family

Noun [C] = Origin
Plural noun = Origins
Adjective = Original
Negative adjective = Unoriginal
Adverb = Originally
Verb = Originate
Noun [C] (thing or person) = Original
Noun [U] (from adjective) = Originality


Secure word family

Adjective = Secure
Negative adjective = Insecure
Adverb = Securely
Negative Adverb = Insecurely
Noun [U] = Security
Negative noun [C, U] = Insecurity
Verb = Secure


Popular word family

Adjective = Popular
Negative Adjective = Unpopular
Noun [U] = Popularity
Negative Noun [U] = Unpopularity
Adverb = Popularly
Verb = Popularise
Noun [U] (from verb) = Popularisation


Advertising campaign

Advertisements and other activities to persuade people to buy sth


Crunching numbers

Doing a lot of calculations


Financial adviser

Someone who advises people about how to save and invest money


Insurance broker

Someone who sells insurance to people


Pecking order

An informal social system in which some people or groups know they are more or less important than others:
There's a clearly established pecking order in this office.
He started as a clerk but gradually rose in the pecking order.


Product endorsement

A personal assurance that a product is good


Appetite for variety

People have an appetite for variety.



Not able to be measured.
Unquantifiable benefits/liabilities/risks Finance people can't value employee attitudes, working environment, or other indirect variables with unquantifiable benefits.



An innate quality or ability is one that you were born with, not one you have learned.


Apt (adj)

Suitable or right for a particular situation.
Aptly (adv)
Aptness (n)