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How much 2012 Olympic medalists earn for winning

Graphic by Craig Fleisch ( for The Vancouver Observer.

Ever wondered how much Olympic athletes get paid for winning medals?

The numbers may surprise you: the United Kingdom, host of this year's summer Olympics in London, pays its athletes nothing, while Singapore pays the most out of ten randomly selected countries with $800,000 US for a gold medal. Canada came in eighth place, behind the US and Australia. 

The Canadian Olympic Committee, which writes the medal bonus cheques to Canadian Olympic athletes, is "independent and predominantly privately funded" according to its official site.

See below for our breakdown of the numbers by medal category, with some strange but true perks countries offer athletes, such as Malaysia awarding badminton players a gold bar worth $630,000 for winning gold.


By the numbers: money awarded for gold, silver and bronze medals 
(Note: all amounts in USD unless otherwise indicated.)

1. Singapore: 

Gold $800,000

Silver NA

Bronze NA


2. Malaysia*:

Gold $315,000 

Silver NA

Bronze NA

*Strange but true: A badminton gold also gets you a gold bar worth $630,000.


3. Kazakhstan:

Gold $250,000

Silver $150,000

Bronze $75,000


4. Russia*:

Gold $135,000

Silver $81,600

Bronze $54,400

*Hometown glory points: Athletes from Chelyabinsk Oblast will be awarded an extra $976,374 from the local government for a gold medal.


5. Ukraine:

Gold $100,000

Silver $75,000

Bronze $50,000


6. USA*:

Gold $25,000 

Silver $15,000

Bronze $10,000

*Cylists win big when they go homeCyclists are eligible for an extra $75,000 for gold, $60,000 for silver, and $45,000 for bronze medals as part of the 100K Challenge. Likewise, wrestlers under the Living the Dream fund could earn up to $250,000 for gold, $50,000 for silver, and $25,000 for bronze medals.


7. Australia*:

Gold $20,300

Silver $13,400

Bronze $10,000

*Swimmers make it rain: Swimmers can earn an extra $36,500 for winning the gold.


8. Canada (in CAD):

Gold $20,000

Silver $15,000

Bronze $10,000


9. Ghana: 

Gold $10,000

Silver $5,000

Bronze $2,500


10. Great Britain:

Gold $0

Silver $0

Bronze $0


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