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BOGOFalso bogof or BOGO

noun [countable/uncountable]

an offer of a free product if a product of the same type is purchased

bogof

adjective

'I must say the first time I heard BOGOF, I was quite put out and I was just about to tell the person where he could BOGOF when one of my colleagues told me that he had meant no harm when he said Why don't you BOGOF?'

Personal e-mail May 2002

'In the past couple of weeks, Toys R Us has launched a "buy one get one free" – or "bogof" – offer on some leading games …'

The Guardian December 2002

retailers often use alternative ways of describing bogof promotions, such as 2 for the price of 1 … or the slightly less generous 3 for 2 offer

No, this is not a rather impolite way of telling someone to go away! This term, which is an acronym for Buy-One-Get-One-Free, has been around for about three years but gained ground during the second half of 2002, so much so that it now appears in non-acronym form (i.e. bogof), and is used regularly as an adjective, with common collocates such as a bogof promotion/offer/range. A bogof item can also be regularly cited, helping to establish a countable noun in both capitalised and lower case forms, e.g. a recent Guardian newspaper article talked about supermarkets 'doing' bogofs. A very common use is in online advertising, where we can see price listings such as Thick pork sausages, 8 pack 99p BOGOF.

Targeting students and bargain hunters generally, there are even websites devoted to disseminating information about where to find the best BOGOFs, e.g. www.buyonegetone.co.uk. Retailers often use alternative ways of describing bogof promotions, such as 2 for the price of 1, sometimes referred to as a twofer, or the slightly less generous 3 for 2 offer, where the third item is free if two similar items are purchased.

In capitalised form, BOGOF is also used as an uncountable noun to refer to a marketing strategy, for example: Coca-Cola have avoided resorting to BOGOF in the UK during the past year. Within many industries this strategy is regarded rather negatively. It is often seen as a last resort which is designed to grab market share at the expense of real profits.

by Kerry Maxwell, author of Brave New Words

This article was first published on 12th May 2003.

Open Dictionary

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Employed but with No Disposable Income or Savings: people who are in work but only earn just enough to live on

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