What Does Better Luck Next Time Mean?

Better Luck Next Time Meaning

Definition: After failing to accomplish something, one hopes for better luck in the future.

This phrase is a wish for things to get better in the future. If one is having bad luck now, one might wish to have better luck or wish better luck for someone else in the future. This person might have lost something or failed to accomplish a task; however, next time his or her luck may improve, leading to an accomplishment.

Origin of Better Luck Next Time

There is no known origin of the phrase.

Examples of Better Luck Next Time

good luck next timeThis phrase can be used either sincerely or sarcastically.

When used sincerely, it is an encouraging message of hope. If someone did not receive the grade that he wanted on a test, you might tell him “better luck next time” as a way to encourage him to try again for a better result.

This phrase can express sincere regret or sympathy for someone as well. If someone were to go on an audition and not get the part for which he auditioned, you might tell him “better luck next time” to express sympathy and understanding of his frustration.

 define better luck next timeThis phrase can also be sarcastic and taunting. Oftentimes, in competitive games, the winners may tell the losers “better luck next time” as a way of teasing them and trying to get them to play again. While sarcastic, this is not considered a rude thing to say when teasing the losing players in a game.

More Examples

  • “Surely, together or separately, they’ll have better luck next time.” –New York Times
  • “Better luck next time: Northstar [fired from being] nation’s first manager of state lottery” –Chicago Tribune


Better luck next time encourages people to have hope that the future will be better than the present. It can be used sincerely or sarcastically.