Approximately vs Substantially - What's the difference?

approximately | substantially |

As adverbs the difference between approximately and substantially

is that approximately is imprecise but close to in quantity or amount while substantially is in a strong substantial manner; considerably.



Alternative forms

* (abbreviation)


  • Imprecise but close to in quantity or amount.
  • In every box of matches there are approximately 40 matchsticks.
    Per 100g of chocolate there are approximately 11.6g of saturated fat.
    ...approximately 60 beats per minute.


    * around, near, nearly, almost, about, loosely, roughly, close to


    * accurately, definitely, exactly, precisely

    See also

    * circa




    (en adverb)
  • In a strong substantial manner; considerably.
  • * 2012 October 23, David Leonhardt, "[]," New York Times (retrieved 24 October 2012):
  • For the first time since the Great Depression, median family income has fallen substantially over an entire decade. Income grew slowly through most of the last decade, except at the top of the distribution, before falling sharply when the financial crisis began.
  • To a great extent; in essence; essentially.
  • Without material qualifications.