swings and roundabouts

(redirected from roundabouts and swings)

swings and roundabouts

A situation in which certain gains, advantages, or other positive aspects or outcomes are offset or balanced by equally disadvantageous losses, setbacks, or negative outcomes (or vice versa). Primarily heard in UK. This promotion has meant I can provide for my family much more easily, but it's so demanding that I don't see them all that much—it's swings and roundabouts, really. The government needs to be wary of the swings and roundabouts of a slight surplus in the budget, because many problems can follow on the heels of unfettered increases in spending.
See also: and, roundabout, swing

swings and roundabouts

BRITISH
If you say that a situation is swings and roundabouts, you mean that there are as many advantages as there are disadvantages in it. There are good and bad points to both approaches — it's swings and roundabouts. You pay less for a property that's out of town but then, you pay more for petrol when you're travelling to work and back. Note: This expression comes from the proverb what you lose on the swings you gain on the roundabouts. People sometimes use the full form of the proverb, or a variation of it. The United States will gain far more on the swings than it loses on the roundabouts.
See also: and, roundabout, swing

swings and roundabouts

a situation in which different actions or options result in no eventual gain or loss. British
This expression comes from the proverbial saying you lose on the swings what you gain on the roundabouts .
1983 Penelope Lively Perfect Happiness I have always reckoned on a fair share of that— swings and roundabouts, rough with smooth.
See also: and, roundabout, swing

ˌswings and ˈroundabouts

(British English, informal) used when you want to say that gaining one thing usually means losing another thing: Higher earnings mean more tax, so it’s all swings and roundabouts.What you gain on the swings you’ll probably lose on the roundabouts.
Swings and roundabouts are both types of equipment found at a fairground.
See also: and, roundabout, swing
References in periodicals archive ?
MORPETH PARK Picnics galore, down Morpeth Park Kids by the dozen, all eager to take part Ice cream and doughnuts all in a row Counting the ducks on the river below Rowing boats a plenty, pretty birds flying high So much to see, as we look to the sky 'Painted Penguins' circling right round the pool Mouths all wide open awaiting the food Sweet sounds of laughter and kids having fun The giant hill slide that is second to none Roundabouts and swings, climbing frame and sand pit A fun day out and not to be missed
The products enable youngsters in wheelchairs to play on roundabouts and swings alongside and at the same time as other children.
We all remember when we were kids and went along to play on slides, roundabouts and swings, but can the kids of today do that in safety?
The special needs school is looking to raise about pounds 10,000 for specialist roundabouts and swings to enable its pupils in wheelchairs to join in the thrills during break times.