Definition of packet in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈpakɪt/


1A paper or cardboard container, typically one in which goods are sold: a packet of crisps
More example sentences
  • We were surprised to receive a bowl containing individual paper packets of sugar with our coffee.
  • A big pint mug came out of one, a packet of loose tea and a bag of sugar out of another.
  • No problem, said Jim as he reached for a big mixing bowl and a packet of flour.
pack, carton, box, cardboard box, container, case, package, parcel, padded bag
trademark Jiffy bag
2 [in singular] informal, chiefly British A large sum of money: a hectic social life could cost a packet
More example sentences
  • And, in keeping with Netgear's philosophy that technology shouldn't cost a packet, it comes at an affordable price, writes Dave Mitchell.
  • It may cost a packet, but devolution should provide far greater powers of scrutiny to give ministers and civil service chiefs the chance to enact change more quickly.
  • This training trip must have cost a packet, but all the Bolton lads not on international duty are over here in Spain for the week - even the young pros.
a fortune, a considerable/vast/large sum of money, a king's ransom
informal a small fortune, millions, billions, lots/pots/heaps of money, a mint, a bundle, a wad, a pile, a stack, a heap, a tidy sum, a killing, a pretty penny, telephone numbers
British informal a bomb, loadsamoney, a shedload, shedloads
North American informal big bucks, big money, gazillions
Australian informal big bickies, motser, motza
3 (also packet boat) dated A ship travelling at regular intervals between two ports, originally for the conveyance of mail.
Example sentences
  • It was built to serve the mail packet boat from Milford Haven.
  • His shipboard view of a Dutch packet boat crossing the Channel conveys vividly both the exhilaration and the discomfort inherent in such a crossing.
  • Pittsford has a number of retail stores and restaurants that are built around an old lumber mill and it is the home of the Sam Patch, an excursion and charter boat that is a replica of an old canal packet boat.
4 Computing A block of data transmitted across a network.
Example sentences
  • Packet switching involves dividing messages into packets and individually transmitting them across the network to their destination.
  • But the method can also be used for other applications, as traffic control of data packets on a communication network.
  • Packet loss describes an error condition in which data packets appear to be transmitted correctly at one end of a connection, but never arrive at the other end.

verb (packets, packeting, packeted)

[with object] (often as adjective packeted)
Wrap up in a packet: packeted fruit pies
More example sentences
  • We spent afternoons picking wild strawberries and raspberries and wildflowers, which were carefully packeted up and sent home to cheer everyone up.
  • On Fridays the cashier used to come down into the room with a tray holding the wages all packeted up.


Mid 16th century: diminutive of pack1, perhaps from Anglo-Norman French; compare with Anglo-Latin paccettum.

Words that rhyme with packet

Blackett, bracket, jacket, placket, racket

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: packet

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