"There Is No Such Thing As A Free Lunch" Is A Famous Economic Expression That Means Everything Has A Cost. In 1 Or 2 Sentences, Describe How This Expression Relates To Opportunity Cost.

Please explain in economic terms the saying "there is no such thing as a free lunch."

Expert Answers info

Walter Fischer eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2013

write3,984 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Business

The old adage that "there is no such thing as a free lunch" was meant to suggest that nothing in life is really free, because there is always some kind of cost involved. That cost could be almost anything, from the expectation of social or professional commitment in exchange for the ostensibly "free" item or service to the notion that freedom in the larger sense of the word requires a sustained and costly commitment that may extend to the greatest sacrifice one can make (i.e., to give one's life for one's country). In a certain sense, the concept is born of cynicism. One person gives another...

(The entire section contains 2 answers and 458 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

pohnpei397 eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2009

write35,413 answers

starTop subjects are History, Literature, and Social Sciences

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

kipkemoi | Student

This can be explained by scarce resources which are limited  to satisfy our unlimited wants.Therefore if the resources were limited there would be no economics hence there is no free lunch. Since there is scarce resources you have to choose the best alternative and give up another you like. Also the concept of opportunity cost brings up the concept of 'there is no free lunch' since it involves the cost of foregone alternative that is given un up hence you have to make a choice among the many alternatives

grgsiocl | Student

The economic theory, and also the lay opinion, that whatever goods and services are provided, they must be paid for by someone - i.e. you don't get something for nothing. The phrase is also known by the acronym of 'there ain't no such thing as a free lunch