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    in cash? by cash

    Dear all,

    Do you think it is wrong to say "pay by cash"?

    I checked COCA and the number of hits are 3, while "pay in cash" has 48 matches.

    If a second language learner asked you if it would be fine to say "pay by cash", would you say "Yes"? Or would you advise them to use "in cash"?

    Thank you!


  1. probus's Avatar
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    Re: in cash? by cash

    I agree with COCA. (HOW COULD I NOT?) "Pay in cash" is by far the more common but "pay by cash" is heard occasionally and understood by fluent speakers of AmE. I would advise learners to embrace mainstream usages and avoid the less common. Sometimes, although not in this case, there may be subtle differences in meaning.

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