Please note that the suggested rates below are minima; that rates for copyright works are for limited licences; and that VAT is not included. See notes on negotiating rates and *find a freelance

The rates for words are for their first appearance in a UK magazine, or US as the case may be. If the publisher wants further uses, negotiate.

* Uploaded 2020/1010/17171717: if you have a printout, check the current version at www.londonfreelance.org/feesguide/PrMagRat.html
The suggested rates (Know a better rate? tell us!)
For full definitions of the categories, click on their names
* See also: reported rates, to compare: Print media / Magazines
RATES:
Magazines category: A: large-circulation and glossy mags
Writing, per 1000 - prestige US magazines from $3 a word GBP 1900.00
Writing, per 1000 words GBP 700.00
Acting as editor on publication: per day GBP 350.00
Section or production editor: per day GBP 250.00
Reporting or researching: per day GBP 220.00
Sub-editing and production: per day GBP 200.00
RATES:
Magazines category: B: smaller consumer mags
Writing, per 1000 - run-of-the-mill US magazines ($1/word) GBP 640.00
Writing, per 1000 words GBP 420.00
Acting as editor on publication: per day GBP 275.00
Section or production editor: per day GBP 220.00
Reporting or researching: per day GBP 180.00
Sub-editing and production: per day GBP 170.00
RATES:
Magazines category: C: larger trade and trade union mags
Writing, per 1000 words GBP 310.00
Acting as editor on publication: per day GBP 230.00
Section or production editor: per day GBP 180.00
Reporting or researching: per day GBP 155.00
Sub-editing and production: per day GBP 155.00
RATES:
Magazines category: D: smaller mags
Writing, per 1000 words GBP 250.00
Acting as editor on publication: per day GBP 180.00
Section or production editor: per day GBP 160.00
Sub-editing and production: per day GBP 140.00
Reporting or researching: per day GBP 140.00

Notes:

  • Category D magazines cover a multitude of sins, down to those that are either very small or very stingy (not mentioning any New Statesmen in particular). The above are decent rates for words contributed that are achievable from many magazines. But some get away with paying £150 per thousand - especially those that hold a virtual monopoly on a specialist field or where the field is infested with enthusiastic amateurs.

Notes:

  • Freelances paid a day rate risk being taxed at source and paying National Insurance as an employed person, though this can be challenged - see Shift payments - tax and time off.
  • Writing on a day rate may have implications for copyright. NUJ members should see Rights and why they are important and check with the Freelance Office.
  • Note that many small-circulation specialist mags pay rates in line with category C, or category B if their readership is particularly influential. A newsletter distributed to a handful of Chief Executive Officers who know that the subject is important, but not what it is, may pay silly money to a writer who does know what it is.
  • Contract publishers may pay considerably more for work used in a given category of magazine than direct publishers would - for example £700 per 1000 words for work that appears in a Category B magazine. See Advice on Magazine work.
  • Some magazines get away with paying less for sub-editing shifts. But they shouldn't.
Agreements
Find a freelance

Browse a selection of NUJ freelances with relevant skills through the Freelance Directory:

More advice and links...
* On negotiating for Print media / Magazines
* PR / Writing harder work, higher rates
[www.londonfreelance.org]
* Rates for the Job good, bad and ugly
* Join the NUJ to get individual advice & representation

Text © Mike Holderness & previous contributors; Moral rights asserted. Comments to ffg@londonfreelance.org please. You may find the glossary helpful.

The National Union of Journalists must not, can not and would not wish to dictate rates or terms of engagement to members or to editors. The information presented here is for guidance and as an aid to equitable negotiation only.

Suggestions apply to contracts governed by UK law only. In any event, nothing here should be construed as legal advice.