1 [countable]the amount of money that you have to pay in order to buy, do, or produce somethingCOLLOCATIONS COLLOCATIONS pay the cost of something meet/bear the cost (of something) (=pay for something) cover the cost (of something) (=pay for all of something) the cost of doing something at a cost of $10/$100 etc high/low cost full/total cost extra/additional cost rising/escalating cost at no extra cost (to somebody) labour/transport/legal etc costs running/operating costs (=what it costs to organize an event or run a business)
to realize something is true because you have had a very unpleasant experience:
Driving fast in wet conditions is dangerous, as my brother discovered to his cost!
➔ count the cost
at count1 (10)WORD CHOICE: WORD CHOICE: cost, costs, price, charge, fee, fareUse costto talk about paying for services and activities, rather than objects• The total cost of the trip was under $500.• I worked out the cost of the repairs.Your costsare the amount of money you have to spend in order to run a business or to do a particular activity• The shop was not making enough money to cover its costs.Use price to mean the amount of money that you must pay for something in a place such as a shop or restaurant• We are cutting all our prices (NOT costs) by 50% for one day only! • We were shocked by the price of a cup of coffee in London.A chargeis the amount you have to pay to have a particular service or use something• For a small charge we will also make your hotel reservations. A feeis the amount you have to pay to enter or join something• The gallery charges no entrance fee. • The fee for membership is £25 per year.It is also the amount you have to pay for a professional service• The lawyer explained her fees.A fareis the amount you have to pay to travel somewhere by bus, train, plane etc• I need some money for my bus fare. • His parents paid his fare to Sydney.
Definition from the Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English Advanced Learner's Dictionary.