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Important notice

Good news! We have updated our writing tools. Writing Tips and The Canadian Style have been combined to create a new tool called Writing Tips Plus.

Don’t forget to update your bookmarks. Within a few weeks, Writing Tips will no longer be available.

Search Canada.ca
To begin your search, go to the alphabetical index below and click on the first letter of the word you are searching for.

free, for free, free of charge

The expression for free is informal and should not be used in writing.

  • Informal: I hope we can see the show for free this time.

In formal writing, use simply free—or, for emphasis or clarity, use the expressions free of charge or at no cost.

  • Elise provides translation services free to non-profit organizations.
  • He’d play free of charge (or at no cost) for a good cause.