Documenting your summer partying certainly pays off! The cast of Jersey Shore made a home in all MTV viewers’ hearts as they watched Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi, Jenni “JWOWW” Farley, Vinny Guadagnino, Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino, Sammi “Sweetheart” Giancola, Ronnie Ortiz-Magro, Deena Cortese, and Pauly “Pauly D” DelVecchio, gym, tan, laundry (GTL), and of course, party. With the reboot Jersey Shore Family Vacation’s second half of season 5 hitting screens, fans find themselves asking one question: What makes Vinny’s mom such a good cook? OK, two questions: What’s Vinny’s mom’s secret and how much did the Jersey Shore cast get paid? To find out the details of the Jersey Shore cast member’s salary, keep reading.
As the show’s top liners, Snooki, The Situation, and Pauly D all made $2 million in just one season. Radar Online reports the cast’s per-episode salaries (as of season 6, the final season) as such: Snooki, who was the fan-favorite on the show and stirred up ample amounts of drama by getting arrested for public intoxication, hooking up with her roommates regardless of gender and getting pregnant in the last season, took home a whopping $150,000 per episode.
Alongside her in salary range was her then-arch nemesis Mike, aka “The Situation,” who made himself a household name with his routine of GTL and his several physical altercations. He also made $150K per episode, as did DJ Pauly D, the Rhode Island native who made his Guido blowout hairstyle infamous and coined expressions like, “Cabs are here!” and “It’s T-shirt time!”
Jenni “JWOWW” Farley — who quickly became Snooki’s best friend and biggest defender — earned $100,000 per episode, thanks to her drunken escapade, like ditching the club to eat bologna and peeing behind a bar, punching Mike in the face, and of course, the infamous beatdown that she gave Sammi Sweetheart.
Vinny took home $90K for his love triangle with Snooki and his valiant efforts in unclogging the toilet in season 6. Ronnie and Sam both took home $80,000 per episode, despite being best known for their volatile relationship.
Deena, the last member to join the cast in season 3, earned $40K per episode, which many consider a shockingly low number. However, reports suggest that amount may have gone up as a direct result of all the drama Snooki’s fellow meatball brought to season 6. The former dental assistant was arrested and quickly became a part of the boys’ club MVP(D).
But it wasn’t always easy living for the Jersey Shore squad. The cast members allegedly weren’t paid anything during the first season. The cast was allowed to stay at the shore house for free but they were also expected to work in Danny Merk‘s T-shirt shop, according to Vulture.
“They started off at $10 an hour, then it went to $15, and then I think I gave them 20 bucks an hour at the very end. You live in a beach house for free and get 20 bucks an hour?” Danny told the outlet in 2018. “It was great money!”
“We did the first season for nothing, zero dollars, except whatever we made at the Shore Store. Me and Ronnie, the first week, we told production, ‘Listen, I think we have to leave. We don’t have any money.’ I’d just graduated college, I didn’t have a job,” Vinny added. “One night, they paid us to promote at Club Karma. I think they gave us like 500 bucks. At the time, if you handed me 500 bucks, that was like handing me a million dollars. I was good for the rest of the summer.”
For Jersey Shore: Family Vacation, which started airing in 2018, the cast is reported to receive payouts based on the amount of drama they bring to the show, according to a report by The Cinemaholic. Pauly D and Mike “The Situation” are the highest-paid cast members of the reunion series, earning $150,000 per episode, per the outlet.
Meanwhile, JWoww’s salary was reportedly maintained at $100,000 and Angelina Pivarnick apparently raked in $3,000 an episode in season 1 and somewhere between $12,000 and $15,000 an episode for the second season.
Their fellow cast member Ronnie announced in 2021 that he would be stepping away from the series.