If you’re going to be a contestant on The Bachelor, you better be in it for love. Although there are plenty of ways to cash in your 15 minutes of fame (*cough, cough selling Fit Tea on Instagram*), a vast majority are reportedly unpaid. Not to mention, these hopeless romantics leave their jobs and spend thousands of dollars on wardrobe. The contestants often step out of the limo with new clothes, hair extensions and even sometimes get plastic surgery beforehand — but the producers aren’t footing the bill.
Bachelor contestant Daria Rose shared how much she spent on clothes before making her limo entrance on night one of Clayton Echard‘s season. “Financial transparency,” she captioned a TikTok in January 2022, which estimated that she spent $2,238 on dresses alone.
“So, um, if anyone needs to borrow a dress, let me know,” Daria joked when concluding the video, telling fans to share their favorite look “in the comments.”
Meanwhile, the stars of the franchise typically make around $100,000, according to famous Bachelor spoiler and blogger Reality Steve (aka Stephen Carbone). The highest-paid Bachelorette star was Emily Maynard, who was rumored to be paid $250,000, while one of the lowest-paid stars was reportedly Bachelorette Ashley Herbert, who Us Weekly claimed only made $30,000 — though Reality Steve disagreed and said she made at least $100,000.
Author Amy Kaufman dove into this topic in her book, but it’s important to note that today’s standards are very different than the past. Season 2’s lead claimed that she took home $10,000 for her time on the show back in 2004, but Amy divulged that it’s now “incredibly rare for someone to make less than six figures.”
Former leading man Ben Higgins opened up about the payday each star receives and explained that it typically mirrors your salary IRL. “They really just match whatever you’d be making in the real world during the months that it tapes. And then you have the experience that kind of pays for the rest,” back in 2016. “You don’t do The Bachelor to make money, I will say that.”
Peter Weber took the reins for season 24. Although he has a full-time job as a pilot for Delta, his stint as the Bachelor meant he most likely received a fat paycheck in exchange for tears, drama and the hope of finding his future wife — spoiler alert, he didn’t. Does this make the emotional reunion with ex Hannah Brown worth it? We’ll let you be the judge of that!
Go get that money (and love)!