a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush

Idiom Definition

Idiom Definition - a bird in the hand or two in the bush

"a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush"

when you recognize that it may be foolish to risk losing something you already have by trying to get something you think might be better


Related words and phrases:

Idiom Scenario 1

Idiom Definition - a bird in the hand or two in the bush

Two colleagues are talking ...

Colleague 1:  We have only a fixed amount in the budget to allocate to either the customer loyalty program or to spend on attracting new customers. What do you think we should do?

Colleague 2:  Well, it takes between four and ten times as much to attract new customers as it does to keep existing ones. Plus, loyal customers spend more than new ones.

Colleague 1:  So you would advise allocating the money to the customer loyalty program?

Colleague 2:  I believe that a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush. Besides, there is no guarantee that we would even attract any new customers. I believe the risk is too great. We should stick with what we have.

Idiom Scenario 2

Idiom Definition - a bird in the hand or two in the bush

Two friends are talking ...

Friend 1:  Well, what are you going to do? You have been offered a job as a teacher and you are supposed to sign the contract Monday.

Friend 2:  But I was really hoping to get the psychologist job that I interviewed for last week. It has better pay and benefits than the teaching position. The problem is that they won't tell me if I have the job until Tuesday.

Friend 1:  Sounds like it would be a foolish risk to turn down the teaching job. A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush, after all.

a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush - Usage:


Usage Frequency Index:   114   click for frequency by country

a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush - Gerund Form:

There is no gerund form for a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.

a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush - Examples:

1)  ... but it will be much more reliable (a bird in the hand is worth more than TEN in the bush!)

2)  There are many men out there but as they say, a bird in the hand is worth more than two in the bush.

3)  Most opted for the safety of 'a bird in the hand' and took the money, but ...

4)  ... might have taken a while to be achieved without a takeover bid. So a bird in the hand, and all that. Shareholders will also lose the nice ...

5)  ... changing circumstances could cause BBBY's price to rise, the old proverb "a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush" is compelling advice.

6)  ... argued that going to court is simply too risky and time-consuming. Settlements are a bird in the hand, the argument goes, and it's better for the public ...

7)  What we find is people like lump sums, not surprisingly. A bird in the hand seems worth more than two in the bush. 

8)  ... says he took CPP at 60, on the theory that a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.

9)  ... they often answer, unsurprisingly, that sooner is better, because a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush. 

10)  It's a risky business. The Crown is taking a bird in the hand. This was a serious quantity of explosives taken off the streets ...

11)  ... and securing what they have made by adding it to their cash savings. A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush as they say.

12)  Seen in those terms, it's a classic short-term versus long-term choice. A bird in the hand or two in the bush.

13)  ... it brings peace of mind. As the saying goes, a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.

14)  ... rather than litigating for years just hoping to recover everything--if you don't think a bird in the hand beats two in the bush--then feel free to hire a lawyer and ...

15)  ... did I have any bicycles for sale? I did. Being as a bird in the hand is better than five old bicycles in my garage, I sold ...

16)  I don't want to say a bird in the hand versus something that has not yet been fully developed, but the ...

17)  I said 'we've got a bird in the hand and none in the bush, we should accept this sponsorship'.

18)  As a shareholder, the question is: do you take a bird in the hand or do you hope for two birds in the bush?

19)  ... of people argue the current proposal should go through, as it is "a bird in the hand" that guarantees Winnipeggers will be able to enjoy riding the slides ...

20)  Besides, as one saying goes, better a bird in the hand than three in the tree, so I would grab NOW whatever ...