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How much money can I expect
to earn, really?

Let's talk turkey - Show me the Money!

The current minimum wage for people aged 21 and over outside of London is 6.19 an hour (before tax). If you're working in London you might be paid a little more. If you're between the age of 18 - 21 you can be paid as little as 4.98 per hour. There are usually no overtime or penalty rates in pubs. You may also receive nothing extra for working bank holidays, Sundays or even Christmas day!

Click here for more information on the National Minimum Wage

If you're on a typical 40 hour week, you'll be making about 245 before tax, national insurance contributions and before your accommodation and upkeep is considered.

After tax and deductions – don't expect more than about 180 - 190 in your hand – IF you have the correct tax numbers (Getting your tax numbers)

Wages in the UK are absolutely appalling, I find it one of the hardest aspects of day to day living.  And knowing how much I am worth compared to what I am actually getting paid made it harder to deal with. I can almost guarantee you that unless your income at the moment is the equivalent of a paper delivery round, that you will earn less money in the UK.

Before you go trying to convert British pounds into your local currency, first you have to know the value of things.

What does 1 buy me?
(as of Apr 2010)

1.30 will buy you one litre of petrol
2.69 for a solitary Big Mac
4.20 should get you a pint of beer in most London pubs – cheaper out of London
7.20 is the price of 20 Marlboro Lights

Want more prices on everyday products and services? Then you might want to check out

Money: Just how expensive is this United Kingdom place?


British coins

“Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen six, result happiness.”

Charles Dickens



The Global Finanacial Crisis hit the worlds economies very hard, however as countries like Australia, South Africa and Canada are recovering well, the United Kingdom still has a long way to go. This means that your money may buy you almost twice now than what it did in September last year!

Still, even with the current weakness of the British Pound you've hopefully realised that this is not a cheap country to live and work in. Pub job wages are notoriously poor, but keep in mind, you have no bills, no accommodation or food costs. That means that everything you earn can be spent on what you want to have fun and not just on what you need to survive. Click here for more infomation on other pub costs

Don't worry too much about money though. Thousands of young people just like you choose a working holiday in the United Kingdom every year - everyone's on a budget of some kind, even with no money, working in pubs is still fun.

Click'next'to find out what hours you can expect to work
Click'back'to return to the Naked truths behind live-in pub work

*updated Feb 2013*