[the] last-minute rush

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Senior Member
Hello. Below is a sentence from OAAD:

"Book now and avoid the last-minute rush."

Is "the" really needed? Would we have an ungrammatical sentence when we leave it out?
  • VicNicSor

    It's a specific rush -- the one that will inevitably happen at the end of the time available for the booking. Besides, in this meaning it's countable, so you can't just drop the article.


    Senior Member
    English - Northeast US
    This would be ungrammatical with no article.

    Changing "the" to "a" would be correct grammar, but would change the meaning. The writer is urging the reader to book now, and the phrase "a last-minute rush" would mean the reader rushing. That would be written as "Book now and avoid rushing at the last minute." or "Book now and avoid a last-minute rush."

    Here "the" is correct, and "the last-minute rush" does not talk about the reader rushing.

    For popular events, it is normal and expected that a rush of bookings (very many in a short time) will happen just prior to the start of the event (a "last-minute rush" of bookings for that event). This sentence is talking about booking one specific event. That event will have one last-minute rush of bookings. Both writer and reader know which one last-minute rush is referred to by "the last-minute rush."
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