Insure vs Ensure – When to Choose Which One and Why?

Recently, some readers of 501 Words have inquired about the differences between ensure vs insure. Both words are derived from the Latin word secures, which means “safe.” As with many words that have the same etymology, these words overlap thematically, but they are not automatically interchangeable.

Ensure vs Insure

Insure vs Ensure definition

As stated earlier, both words came from the Latin word secures. However, they have a slightly different meaning according to the current dictionary.

According to Cambridge, “ensure” is a verb that means “to make something certain to happen” while “insure” means “to make something certain, or to be certain about something.” The certainty or confidence in making something happen is apparent in both words.

When to use insure vs ensure

Ensure used to mean “to declare earnestly to; state with confidence to.” Nowadays, it is widely used to secure or guarantee an outcome or development. 

In the mid-1600s, the meaning of insuring steered a financial sense as “to pay a sum to secure indemnity to or on, in case of loss, damage, or death.” This financial sense is what distinguishes it today.

Today, we primarily use insure to talk about providing or obtaining insurance. Also, it can mean other kinds of risk. However, for this usage, the word “against” follows “insure” such as: “We insured against disappointment by making an early reservation.”

FAQ

What is the definition of ensure vs insure?

According to Cambridge, “ensure” is a verb that means “to make something certain to happen” while “insure” means “to make something certain, or to be certain about something.”

When to use ensure vs insure?

Ensure used to mean “to declare earnestly to; state with confidence to.” Nowadays, it is widely used to secure or guarantee an outcome or development. 
In contrast, we use insure to talk about providing or obtaining insurance. Also, it can be used to talk about other kinds of risk, which is followed by “against.”

Conclusion: Insure vs Ensure

The terms ensure vs insure address the action of making certain or guaranteeing. However, each means a slightly different way. While they can most of the time be interchanged when discussing being certain of something, the most important distinction is that “insure” is the one that refers to insurance policies and has financial meaning.

If you have any questions about this topic, you may always leave a comment below and we will try to answer your query as soon as possible.

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