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 English Vocabulary for learners 

Expressions with 'TIME'
from:  'as time goes by'   to:  'waste of time'

Expression Meaning Example
As time goes by As the time passes As time goes by I have become more aware of the necessity to preserve our planet.
Ahead of time In advance, before the set time If I finish the project ahead of time I'll be able to focus on the presentation.
Behind the times Be old-fashioned; have ideas that are out of date The way he runs his coffee shop is completely behind the times.
By the time Before reaching the time when something happens (with no specific time mentioned). By the time Julie arrived at the station the train had left.
By this time Similar to 'before now'.
At some time before the present moment.
Look at the time! It's midnight. By this time I'm usually asleep in bed!
By that time Similar to 'before then'.
Before a specific time in the past or the future.
- Past: Julie arrived at the station at 11.15, but by that time the train had left.
- Future: What will I be doing in 2070? Not much because by that time I'll be an old man!
Do/serve time Spend time in prison He's doing time  for a bank robbery.
For the time being For the moment; temporarily Laura has left John and is living with her parents for the time being.
Have the time of your life Enjoy yourself very much The kids had the time of their lives at Disneyland.
High time Past the appropriate time It's high time you got out of bed!.
In the nick of time/
Just in time
At the last minute, before it's too late We arrived in the nick of time. The bus was about to leave!
The report was finished just in time.
Make time Find the time to do something It's important to make time for your family.
Matter of time Not long before something happens It's only a matter of time before the company is taken over.
Pass the time Occupy yourself while waiting The train was late so I made some phone calls to pass the time.
Pressed for time Need to hurry
How long will it take? I'm really pressed for time.
Race against time Have to work quickly to get something done before a set time It was a race against time to get everything ready for the inauguration.
Run out of time Have no time left Paul ran out of time and had to finish the test quickly.
Save time Do something the quickest way We'll save time if we go through the park.
Short of time Not have much time I'll be brief because we're short of time.
Spend time Pass time doing something
How much time do you spend on your homework?
Stand the test of time Something still found valuable and useful after many years The teaching method has stood the test of time. It is still used in schools today.
Time after time Do something again and again; repeatedly Time after time Alex arrives late at school.
Time flies Time goes by or passes very quickly. It's hard to believe we've been living here two years already. Time flies!
Time is money Time should not be wasted because you could be using it to earn money. Don't waste time on minor details. Time is money!
Time is ripe A suitable time to do something I'll wait until the time is ripe before asking my parents to lend me the money.
Time will tell Only in the future will the result be known Have we made the right choice? (Only) time will tell.
Waste time Spend too much time on something Don't waste time  on unimportant details.
(A) waste of time Spend too much time on something pointless or useless It's a waste of time  calling them. You'll just get an answering machine!

English idioms
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