Image Credit: Disney
Forgot password
Enter the email address you used when you joined and we'll send you instructions to reset your password.
If you used Apple or Google to create your account, this process will create a password for your existing account.
This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.
Reset password instructions sent. If you have an account with us, you will receive an email within a few minutes.
Something went wrong. Try again or contact support if the problem persists.
Survivor cast
Photo Via CBS

How much do ‘Survivor’ contestants get paid to be on the show?

How much would you need to be paid?

If you were asked to spend 39 days on an abandoned island alongside a dozen other people battling for food and supplies, how much would you need to be paid to participate?

Recommended Videos

This is a question many viewers have had for the iconic reality TV series Survivor. Running for 40 seasons, Survivor has seen many contestants take on the challenge of survival while using strength, wit, and deception to make their way to the end and become the ultimate survival champion.

While you’re probably thinking that non-winners don’t make any money during this experience, pay has to be a factor in deciding whether or not competitors uproot their lives for a month or more to try their hand at the $1 million prize. So how much are they paid?

Do Survivor contestants get paid?

Survivor Men
Image Via CBS

It isn’t clear exactly how much contestants on the show get paid, as the reports on the subject are varied. Furthermore, we expect that pay differs between seasons of the show, not just for each contestant. Because of this, landing on a number is made difficult, but we can get some ideas from reports.

According to Cinemablend, Survivor contestants make more than $10,000 for their time on the show and are all paid this amount for their participation in the series finale.

Furthermore, the report claims that the first tribe member to be booted from the island earns him or herself a small bonus of $3,500. The report also claims that contestants who take home second and third place typically make between $80,000 and $100,000. Obviously, the winner takes home the grand prize, which has varied from season to season, but on average is around $1 million.

While these numbers appear to be from Survivor U.S., according to a contestant from Survivor Australia, pay isn’t quite so luxurious. In a 2019 interview, former Survivor Australia contestant Lee Carseldine shared that contestants on the show earn around $65 per day during filming.

“We only get paid $90 AUD a day,” Lee explained in an interview with MamaMia. “So apart from trying to win it (and take home $500,000 AUD), you aren’t doing it for the money. It’s a whole lot of hurt for not a lot gained if you don’t win.”

It isn’t clear whether the report is taking into account the reported bonuses for appearing on Survivor as part of the jury or appearing in the series finale, so the figure could fall more in line with other reports. Even in 2023, the pay for Survivor seems to vary but maybe in the future contestants will see some kind of flat rate for their troubles.

We Got This Covered is supported by our audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a small affiliate commission. Learn more about our Affiliate Policy
Image of Ryan Galloway
Ryan Galloway
Assigning Editor for We Got This Covered, avid moviegoer and Marvel enjoyer.