- The definition of out of pocket is something that you had to pay for yourself, expenses incurred that you were responsible for or money losses you had to bear.
When you go on a business trip but decide to take yourself out to dinner and pay on your own, the cost of the dinner is an example of an out of pocket expense.
Used by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
- Without funds or assets: a traveler who was caught out of pocket.
- In a state of having experienced a loss, especially a financial one.
- Calling for the spending of cash: out-of-pocket expenses.
- Lacking funds: hungry, cold, and out-of-pocket travelers.
out-of-pocket - Phrases/Idioms
Lacking money; also, having suffered a financial loss, as in We can't go; I'm out of pocket right now. William Congreve had it in The Old Bachelor (1693): “But egad, I'm a little out of pocket at present.” [Late 1600s]
Referring to actual money spent, as in I had to pay the hotel bill out of pocket, but I know I'll be reimbursed. This expression sometimes occurs as a hyphenated adjective mainly in the phrase out-of-pocket expenses, as in My out-of-pocket expenses for business travel amounted to more than a thousand dollars. [Late 1800s]