Share this entry

Share this page


Pronunciation: /weɪst/

Translation of waste in Spanish:


  • 1 uncountable/no numerable (of fuel, materials) desperdicio (masculine), derroche (masculine) a waste of time una pérdida de tiempo it's a waste of money es tirar el dinero don't you think it's a waste of space? ¿no te parece que estás desperdiciando or desaprovechando espacio? a waste of effort un esfuerzo inútil it's a waste of breath trying to make him see reason tratar de que entre en razón es gastar saliva inútilmente the waste of food here is dreadful es espantoso cómo tiran aquí la comida there is no waste in this ham este jamón no tiene desperdicio we can save money by avoiding waste podemos economizar evitando los despilfarros she's working as a waitress: it's such a waste! trabaja de camarera: ¡qué desperdicio! to go to waste [talent] desperdiciarse [food] echarse a perder he let his talent go to waste desperdició su talento
    Example sentences
    • Elections even at a state level cost money and both parties wish to avoid an unnecessary waste of money by contesting in an election that they will lose.
    • It was an inappropriate appointment, in that it was clearly a dismal waste of his extravagant talents.
    • We went for a weekend, which on the face of it sounds like an extravagant waste of time, but was actually painlessly good fun.
  • 2 uncountable/no numerable 2.1 (refuse) residuos (masculine plural), desechos (masculine plural) human waste excrementos (masculine plural) 2.2 (surplus matter) material (masculine) sobrante or de desecho
    Example sentences
    • A nearly inert material, concrete is suitable as a medium for recycling waste or industrial by-products.
    • Many are turned into cesspools and dumping sites for solid waste, including hazardous materials.
    • Americans are right to refuse truckloads of garbage that contain biomedical waste and radioactive material.
  • 3
    (wastes plural)
    the deserted wastes of Antarctica las desiertas inmensidades or extensiones de la Antártica

transitive verb/verbo transitivo

  • 1 (misuse, squander) [talents/efforts] desperdiciar, malgastar; [money/electricity] despilfarrar, derrochar; [food] tirar, desperdiciar; [time] perder*; [space] desaprovechar, desperdiciar; [opportunity/chance] desperdiciar he has wasted his life ha desperdiciado su vida we wasted a lot of time arguing perdimos mucho tiempo discutiendo you're wasting my time me estás haciendo perder el tiempo he didn't waste any time (in) cashing the check se fue a cobrar el cheque sin perder (ni) un minuto you're wasting your breath! estás gastando saliva inútilmente your work won't be wasted tu trabajo no ha sido en vanoto waste sth on sb/sth/-ing he's wasted a fortune on cars/(on) eating out ha derrochado una fortuna en coches/comiendo en restaurantes don't waste your time on them no pierdas el tiempo con ellos the irony was wasted on her no captó la ironía
  • 3
    (wasted past participle of/participio pasado de)
    3.1 (misused, futile) [time/money] perdido; [opportunity/space] desperdiciado, desaprovechado; [effort] inútil it was a wasted journey fue un viaje en balde 3.2 (shrunken) [body] debilitado, consumido; [limb] atrofiado 3.3 (drunk) (British English/inglés británico) [colloquial/familiar], borracho to get wasted emborracharse

intransitive verb/verbo intransitivo

  • 1.1 (squander) waste not, want not quien no malgasta no pasa necesidades 1.2waste away


  • 1 [ground] (barren) yermo; (not cultivated) baldío, sin cultivar to lay waste arrasar the town was laid waste by the rebels los rebeldes arrasaron la ciudad

Phrasal verbs

waste away

verb + adverb/verbo + adverbio
[person/body] consumirse; [muscle] atrofiarse

Definition of waste in:

Share this entry

Share this page


What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove ads and access premium resources

Word of the day papista
papist …
Cultural fact of the day

A piñata is a hollow figure made of cardboard, or from a clay pot lined with colored paper. Filled with fruit, candy, toys, etc, and hung up at parties, people take turns to stand in front of them blindfolded and try to break them with a stick. They feature in Mexican posadas posada and in children's parties there, in Cuba and in Spain.