a cheap skate

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a cheap skate

Someone who is reluctant to spend money. Oh, he'll never pay for a fancy hotel suite like that—he's a real cheap skate.
See also: cheap, skate
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

cheap skate

A stingy person, as in He's a real cheap skate when it comes to tipping. This idiom combines cheap (for "penurious") with the slang usage of skate for a contemptible or low individual. It has largely replaced the earlier cheap John. [Slang; late 1800s]
See also: cheap, skate
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


n. a miserly person; a very cheap person. (see also piker.) A 5 percent tip! What a cheapskate!
McGraw-Hill's Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.
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References in classic literature ?
Watch me go across an' win her from them cheap skates."
"Well," he snarled, "I suppose I gotta give you cheap skates a drink when I ain't got more'n enough for a good petrification for myself."
Grimshaw would curl his lip in a sneer and mutter: "The cheap skate. The skunk.
CHEAP SKATES! If the Hollywood comedy Confessions Of A Shopaholic struck a chord but you don't have the Branson-sized credit to go with your addiction, MARIE TURBILL has an ingenious solution - if you can't shop, then swap!
We quickly learned to do what the locals do at most restaurants and take our own wine, which only goes to prove what cheap skates we are.
He saved his allowance to buy a pair of cheap skates and taught himself to skate, finding pickup games at ice rinks near his home in Philadelphia.