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Difference between Get by on something and Get by with something

get by on somethingsurvive by means of smth. (usually inadequate):

  • She gets by on odd jobs hoping to make it through the worst crisis that has ever hit the economy.

get by with something

1. = get by on something:

  • I don’t know how she gets by with the money she earns from that job.

2. manage with smth. that is available, for want of anything better:

  • You may be able to get by with one screwdriver but it’s better to buy a large and a small one.

3. (also: get away with something ) go unpunished for doing smth. reprehensible:

  • Don’t try to cheat on your income tax, you’ll never get by with it.