BEAT THE DOLDRUMS WITH THIS WORD OF THE DAY QUIZ!
words often confused with biannual
OTHER WORDS FROM biannualbi·an·nu·al·ly, adverb
Words nearby biannual
What does biannual mean?
Biannual can mean two things: occurring once every two years or occurring twice per year.
Biannual is a synonym of biyearly, which can also be used to mean every two years or twice per year. (Biyearly can also mean “lasting for two years,” but this meaning is rarely used.)
The adverb form of biannual is biannually.
- The Olympic Games are biannual, meaning they happen every two years.
- This is a biannual meeting—we have it in April and October.
Where does biannual come from?
People are often confused about whether to use biannual or biyearly and for good reason: both can mean “twice per year” or “every other year.” The thing to remember is that one isn’t more “correct” than the other. However, biannual is more commonly used than biyearly.
There are several other similar time-related terms that can make things even more confusing. Semiannual and semiyearly both mean occurring twice a year or lasting for half a year. Another word, biennial, means happening every two years or lasting for two years, but this is used less commonly than biannual or biyearly.
Yes, you can sometimes figure out what biannual means through the context of the sentence. But not always. When a coworker tells you a meeting is biannual, it probably means it happens twice a year, but it could also mean it happens every two years. (Hopefully it doesn’t mean that it lasts for two years.)
Here’s the best (and maybe only) way to be perfectly clear: just say “twice a year” or “once every two years.”
Did you know ... ?
What are some other forms related to biannual?
- biannually (adverb)
What are some synonyms for biannual?
What are some words that share a root or word element with biannual?
What are some words that often get used in discussing biannual?
What are some words biannual may be commonly confused with?
How is biannual used in real life?
Biannual is perhaps most commonly used to describe events that occur every two years, such as the Olympics, but this isn’t always the case, so it’s always best to make sure.
One biannual joy: every six months when I call to confirm an appointment, the receptionist at Mt. Sinai oncology still replies to me on the phone with "MR. MEAD!! how are we??"
— ᴅᴇʀᴇᴋ ᴍᴇᴀᴅ (@derektmead) January 9, 2019
I think its almost time for my bi-annual 'throw away all my socks and buy all new ones from Primark' day. IM EXCITED
— Joel Dommett (@joeldommett) April 16, 2012
Just remembered my biannual car insurance payment is due in June. Hate dropping that $450 twice a year since I turned 16 🥴🥴
— Reg (@Ginamazinn) May 21, 2020
Try using biannual!
To avoid confusion, what’s the best way to say twice a year?
D. twice a year
Example sentences from the Web for biannual
Some things about the biannual New York Fashion Week remain reassuringly constant.Who to See and Where to be Seen: The Hot Tips for New York Fashion Week|Barbara Ragghianti|September 3, 2014|DAILY BEAST
And this month she launches the third issue of her biannual magazine, CR Fashion Book, which made its debut a year ago.Carine Roitfeld Documentary ‘Mademoiselle C’ Offers Intimate Look|Isabel Wilkinson|September 11, 2013|DAILY BEAST
Earlier this month Airbus announced the winning idea for its biannual student competition.Airline Pilots Ditch Charts and Paperwork for iPads to Save Money and Fuel|Miranda Green|June 28, 2013|DAILY BEAST
Give your wallet a break and mark your calendar for Glow, the dusk-to-dawn biannual art event on Santa Monica Beach.