[ treyd-in ]

  1. goods given in whole or, usually, part payment of a purchase: We used our old car as a trade-in for the new one.

  2. a business transaction involving a trade-in.

  1. of or relating to the valuation of goods used in a trade-in: trade-in price.

  2. of or relating to such a business transaction: trade-in terms.

Origin of trade-in

First recorded in 1920–25; noun, adj. use of verb phrase trade in Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use trade-in in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for trade-in


    • a used article given in part payment for the purchase of a new article

    • a transaction involving such part payment

    • the valuation put on the article traded in

    • (as modifier): a trade-in dealer

verbtrade in
  1. (tr, adverb) to give (a used article) as part payment for the purchase of a new article

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Other Idioms and Phrases with trade-in


Give or sell an old or used item and apply the value or proceeds to a new item. For example, Some people prefer to trade in their old car to the dealer, but we feel we'll do better by simply selling it. [First half of 1900s]

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.