Understanding the Difference Between “Excess” and “Access”

Have you ever found yourself mixing up the words “excess” and “access”? While they may sound similar, they have very different meanings. In this article, we’ll explore the definitions of each word and provide examples to help you understand how to use them correctly.

Excess – What does it mean?

The word “excess” is a noun that refers to an amount of something that is more than necessary, permitted, or desirable. It can also be used as an adjective to describe something that is more than what is needed or expected. Let’s look at some examples:

  • The excess of sugar in the drink made it too sweet to drink.
  • The excess of alcohol in his system made him unable to drive.
  • The excess luggage fee charged by the airline was outrageous.
  • The excess amount of noise coming from the party next door kept me awake all night.
  • The excess sunlight caused the plants to wither.


Access – What does it mean?

The word “access” is a noun that refers to the ability to enter, reach, or use something. It can also be used as a verb that means to gain entry or use of something. Here are some examples:

  • The hotel room had access to a private beach.
  • The new software provided users with easier access to the company’s database.
  • The mountain climbers struggled to gain access to the summit due to the difficult terrain.
  • With the new security system in place, only authorized personnel can access the building.
  • The website requires a login to access its content.

And now, to make sure you understand the difference well, do the following quiz!


Access or Excess?

In each sentence, choose whether to use "excess" or "access" based on the context.

1 / 10

The hotel guests were pleased to have __________ to a private spa.

2 / 10

The partygoers were asked to leave due to __________ noise complaints from the neighbors.

3 / 10

The doctor warned the patient of the dangers of consuming an __________ of sugar.

4 / 10

Only employees with a security badge have __________ to the restricted area.

5 / 10

The airline charged an __________ baggage fee for overweight suitcases.

6 / 10

The new software provides easy __________ to the company's database.

7 / 10

The yoga instructor advised her students not to push themselves to the point of __________.

8 / 10

The fire department had to cut a hole in the roof to gain __________ to the burning building.

9 / 10

The city installed wheelchair ramps to provide better __________ to public spaces.

10 / 10

The museum offers free __________ to children under the age of 12.

Your score is

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