Is there an equivalent to the french idiom

Jeter l'argent par la fenêtre

which means throwing money through a window? (I'm not sure about the translation, especially through.)

  • 2
    Nothing about throwing it through a window, no. "Pour money down the drain", "spend like a sailor", and "money burns a hole in his pocket" are three similar ones.
    – user21497
    Commented Dec 13, 2012 at 10:07
  • 2
    – RegDwigнt
    Commented Dec 13, 2012 at 10:14
  • 1
    There's a similar idiom in German: "Geld beim Fenster rauswerfen" (literally: "to throw money out the window"). I don't know of an English one, 'though. Commented Dec 13, 2012 at 10:15
  • @RegDwighт thanks, I didn't know I could get idioms translation from there!
    – alecail
    Commented Dec 13, 2012 at 10:16
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    "Down the toilet" or "down a rathole" are two more.
    – Robusto
    Commented Dec 13, 2012 at 10:51

5 Answers 5


The most commonly-used equivalent English phrase is:

Pouring/throwing money down the drain

Fig. to waste money; to throw money away. "What a waste! Buying that old car is just pouring money down the drain. Don't buy any more of that low-quality merchandise. That's just throwing money down the drain."


I have often heard other American English speakers say, "that's just like throwing [or tossing] money out the window" when referring to someone wasting time or resources (eg - not closing a door in winter), or buying unnecessary items or services. I don't remember the last time I heard this phrase said, but don't believe that this english idiom has gone out of use. I am 55, and idioms - like slang - do go out of favor over time and/or enter regular use after people hear the popular actors or celebrities of the day say them on TV or in the movies, hear popular singers use them in song lyrics, or see or hear them used in current books, media or advertisements.

  • I have also heard and used "throwing money out the window" in english. Commented Jun 3, 2014 at 7:21

A slightly more "colourful" version is to flush your money down the toilet.

See http://www.google.com.au/search?q=flushing+money+down+the+toilet


There are so many that have similar meanings. Here's one about money and a train:

It's like tossing money off the back of a train.


or ....its like counting money in the shower....

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