View synonyms for competitive


[ kuhm-pet-i-tiv ]


  1. of, pertaining to, involving, or decided by competition:

    competitive sports; a competitive examination.

  2. well suited for competition; having a feature that makes for successful competition:

    a competitive price.

  3. having a strong desire to compete or to succeed.
  4. useful to a competitor; giving a competitor an advantage:

    He was careful not to divulge competitive information about his invention.


/ kəmˈpɛtɪtɪv /


  1. involving or determined by rivalry

    competitive sports

  2. sufficiently low in price or high in quality to be successful against commercial rivals
  3. relating to or characterized by an urge to compete

    a competitive personality

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Derived Forms

  • comˈpetitively, adverb
  • comˈpetitiveness, noun

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Other Words From

  • com·peti·tive·ly adverb
  • com·peti·tive·ness noun
  • anti·com·peti·tive adjective
  • anti·com·peti·tive·ly adverb
  • anti·com·peti·tive·ness noun
  • noncom·peti·tive adjective
  • noncom·peti·tive·ly adverb
  • noncom·peti·tive·ness noun
  • over·com·peti·tive adjective
  • over·com·peti·tive·ly adverb
  • over·com·peti·tive·ness noun
  • pseudo·com·peti·tive adjective
  • pseudo·com·peti·tive·ly adverb
  • quasi-com·peti·tive adjective
  • quasi-com·peti·tive·ly adverb
  • super·com·peti·tive adjective
  • uncom·peti·tive adjective
  • uncom·peti·tive·ly adverb
  • uncom·peti·tive·ness noun

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Word History and Origins

Origin of competitive1

First recorded in 1820–30; from Latin competīt(us) (past participle of competere “to meet, coincide”; compete ) + -ive

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Example Sentences

The strategy of getting cozy with corporate partners isn’t unique to Forage, but the team views it as a competitive advantage.

The latter five states are among those most competitive this year.

For example, if you bring down the cost of low-carbon technology in the US, you can make it competitive with fossil fuels in China and India, encouraging its use.

From Vox

Take a highly competitive state like Pennsylvania, for example.

From Vox

The central premise of the Friedman Doctrine was that to continue to prosper, American business needed to stay globally competitive—and that required executives to focus only on profits and share price.

From Quartz

In the process, we get straightjacketed into emotionally distant, competitive lives.

Boys are taught early in life to devalue care, to be hyper-competitive, super-achieving men.

“These towns that are doing it just continue to make New Jersey less and less competitive,” Christie said.

The follow-up story is how those who survived both the competitive onslaught, as well as the recession, have adapted.

Yazbek says the demand for safe crossing has made the smugglers very competitive.

This is simpler than having to cram and then stand the racket of a competitive examination.

Those were the days when competitive traffic, gained almost at any cost, was sweet as stolen kisses are said to be.

The design for the cathedral was a competitive one selected from many submitted by the greatest architects in the world.

Few find anything promising or attractive in the competitive examination.

Nicky's admirable judgment told him that as a competitive poet he was dished by Prothero.


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More About Competitive

What does competitive mean?

Competitive is most commonly used to describe a person who has a strong desire to compete and win.

Competitive is commonly associated with sports, but it is used in many different contexts that involve competition. It is commonly used to describe someone or something that is able to succeed against or stay even with others in the same contest or setting, as in Our new product will help us stay competitive in this market.

Example: Most pro athletes are competitive by nature and always want to win no matter what they’re playing—even if it’s something as simple as a game of cards.

Where does competitive come from?

The first records of competitive come from the 1820s. It derives from the Latin verb competere, meaning “to meet, come together.”

Competition often involves two or more individuals or teams coming together in some kind of contest. Being competitive in this context can mean a few different things. Most often, it means someone really wants to win—in a particular competition or in general. Elite athletes are often described as ultra-competitive, meaning they have a strong drive to win. If you warn a new player in your weekly poker game that it can get pretty competitive, you mean that the players aren’t just playing for fun—they’re playing to win. In this way, competitiveness is often associated with aggressiveness.

Competitive can also refer to having what it takes to compete in a particular setting, as in We’re giving students the tools that they’ll need in order to stay competitive in the workplace of the future. The word is used similarly in the context of business, especially to describe a product that has a price or level of quality that will make it appealing compared to other similar products.

Did you know ... ?

What are some other forms related to competitive?

What are some synonyms for competitive?

What are some words that share a root or word element with competitive

What are some words that often get used in discussing competitive?


How is competitive used in real life?

Competitive is often used to describe people who always want to win. It is especially used in the context of sports and other situations that involve competition, such as business.


Try using competitive!

Which of the following words is least likely to describe someone who is competitive?

A. ambitious
B. aggressive
C. ruthless
D. passive

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competitioncompetitive exclusion