The Tokyo 2020 Olympics has been a major success so far for Team GB, as they’ve managed to stand tall at 6th place with 35 medals so far. This is not the first time the British team has triumphed in the Olympics as they brought home a hefty 67 medals for the Rio Olympics in 2016.
But as we see our British athletes winning gold, silver and bronze medals left right and centre, there’s a bigger question on our minds—how much do Olympians earn for winning medals?
Whether or not an athlete gets paid for winning a medal at the Olympics depends on the participating countries, but the International Olympic Committee does not give out any cash incentives. While some governments choose to compensate their athletes for their victories, others are only given the bare minimum—enough to cover travel expenses to and from the game.
Team GB’s earnings
In the UK, athletes do not receive cash rewards for their winnings, however they are given an annual training stipend. Moreover, UK Sport—who funds the Olympic programme for Team GB—provides £125 million that was collected from the government and lottery funds, to support the Olympic and Paralympic teams. A spokesperson from the British Olympic Association told the Daily Telegraph back in 2016:
It is our view that financial rewards do not significantly impact the motivation of an athlete to reach the Olympic podium.
We believe that the drive, dedication and commitment required of Team GB athletes is motivated, first and foremost, by the desire to represent their country to the very best of their ability on the greatest sporting stage in the world, the Olympic Games; and their love of sport.
Moneyunder30.com revealed that some countries are far more generous with their cash rewards.
The United States pays $37,500 for gold, $22,500 for silver, and $15,000 for a bronze medal. Australian Olympians receive $15,000 for gold, $11,000 for silver, and $7,000 for bronze.
But the biggest cash prize offered so far is by the Singaporean government, who gives their athletes a whopping $737,000 for gold, $369,000 for silver, and $184,000 for bronze.