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Similar Sounding Commonly Confused Words: Fair and Fare

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The words fair and fare sound similar when spoken, but are different words.

The word fair can be used as an adjective and as a noun, depending on the context.

(1) The word fair as an adjective has multiple meanings.
(a) In one sense it means pale or light-coloured and the antonym is dark.
(b) In another sense it means just, reasonable or impartial and the antonym is biased.

(2) The word fair as a noun refers to a carnival, a trade event or an exhibition.
The word fare can be used as a noun or as a verb.
(a) As a noun the meanings of fare are: charge; tariff; cost; fee; price; ticket. It is also used when referring to a passenger or the menu.

(b) As a verb the meanings of fare are: cope; get on; do; manage; get along.

Sample Usage

(1)(a) Examples of Fair as an adjective in reference to colour:-
1. When looking for a bride, boys are still obsessed about fair complexion rather than the qualities of the girl.
2. The fair-haired model was selected to endorse the shampoo.
3. The fairness cream was all hogwash and did not really give a lighter complexion.

(1)(b) Examples of fair as an adjective in reference to being just:
1. The editors felt that in the light of their hard work it was only fair that the Webmaster gave them indefinite Google Adsense revenue earnings from all sections and not just for Resources.
2. The Principals decided that it was fair to give the students extra time to complete the exam paper as most of them arrived late due to the heavy rains.
3. Minal thought it unfair that the teacher reprimanded her when actually the girl behind her had thrown the paper across the classroom.

(2) Examples of fair as a noun:
1. The businessman decided to set up a booth at the trade fair to promote his courier services.
2. The handicrafts fair offered many discounts.
3. People thronged to the fair grounds during the weekend.

Examples of fare as a noun:
1. The airlines cut their fares when the price of fuel dropped.
2. The hotel fares were too high for the Desai family, so they decided to look for accommodation elsewhere.
3. The tour operator made good business as he offered discounted fares.

Examples of fare as a verb:
1. The conductor yelled out to the bus driver as the fare had got off without paying for his ticket.
2. Leena fared well in the exam.
3. The teachers told the entire class that they would fare well if they studied hard.

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