Definition of premium in English:


Line breaks: pre|mium
Pronunciation: /ˈpriːmɪəm

noun (plural premiums)

  • 1An amount to be paid for a contract of insurance.
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    • Correctly computed, the income of a wage earner entitled to a pension consists of his wages plus the amount of the premium he would have to pay to an insurance company for the acquisition of an equivalent claim.
    • Non-group insurance is expensive: premiums and deductibles are higher and overall plan benefits are less generous than for group plans.
    • In some parts of the country, insurance premiums have more than doubled.
    insurance charge, insurance payment, regular payment, instalment
  • 2A sum added to an ordinary price or charge: customers are reluctant to pay a premium for organic fruit
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    • An indemnity bond is a premium charged by the lender and paid by the customer to insure the lender against a default in mortgage repayments by the borrower.
    • Employers in the restaurant, bar and tourist trade have been particularly vocal in querying the provisions on tips, weekend premiums and service charges.
    • Managers want to pay as small a premium to the market price as possible.
    surcharge, additional payment, extra amount/charge, additional fee
  • 2.1A sum added to interest or wages; a bonus.
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    • Much of the increase in the wage premium for education and skills is due to technological change that has increased demand for highly educated workers.
    • American workers who use computers command a wage premium of 15% over workers who do not.
    • In other words, the wage premium earned by the highly skilled is increasing.
  • 2.2 [as modifier] Relating to or denoting a commodity of superior quality and therefore a higher price: premium lagers
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    • In Aberdeen, the licensing board has proposed minimum drink prices in pubs of £1.75 for a pint of beer, cider, premium lager or cocktail.
    • As technology sectors develop, advanced products carrying premium prices become commodities.
    • She said: ‘These are top quality, premium products but we sell them at affordable prices.’
    superior, premier, high-end, top-end, exclusive, elite, top, select, choice, deluxe, luxurious, classy, prime, first-rate, high-quality, top-quality, high-grade, five-star, fine, finest; British upmarket
  • 2.3 Stock Exchange The amount by which the price of a share or other security exceeds its issue price, its nominal value, or the value of the assets it represents: the shares jumped to a 70 per cent premium on the first day
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    • The bankers who helped to launch the deal confidently predicted that the shares would trade a premium to net asset value.
    • It is difficult to imagine the shareholders turning the deal down, since it represents a 16 per cent premium to the share price last month.
    • A bid of €3 would represent a premium of over 50 per cent on where the company traded on Friday afternoon.


at a premium

  • 1Scarce and in demand: space was at a premium
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    • Property is an excellent investment, particularly in Dublin, where space is at a premium but demand remains high.
    • It had a whopping 64MB of memory, so space was at a premium.
    • This was sensible as in mid-summer hut space is at a premium.
    scarce, in great demand, like gold dust, hard to come by, in short supply, thin on the ground, few and far between, not to be had, rare, rare/scarce as hen's teeth
    informal not to be had for love or money
  • 2Above the usual or nominal price: touts sell the tickets at a premium
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    • The price they'll get has been set at a premium above what they could expect to receive from traditional marketing outlets.
    • In Edinburgh the market is still robust and city centre property prices for developers are at a premium.
    • With the development plans in limbo, prices should remain at a premium.

put (or place) a premium on

Regard or treat as particularly valuable or important: he put a premium on peace and stability
More example sentences
  • High fuel costs make commodities more expensive and put a premium on locally produced goods.
  • Instruct your Web designer to put a premium on users' experience; look and feel are as important as functionality.
  • Americans in 1921 placed a premium on efficiency, and Hoover was widely regarded as its embodiment.
value greatly, attach great/special importance to, set great store by, regard as particularly valuable/important, put a high value on, hold in high regard, appreciate greatlymake valuable, make invaluable, put a high value on, make essential, make important


early 17th century (in the sense 'reward, prize'): from Latin praemium 'booty, reward', from prae 'before' + emere 'buy, take'.

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a small amount; a little