Reality TV

EXCLUSIVE: The amount Married at First Sight contestants really get paid will blow your mind

'MAFS made us broke!'
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Married At First Sight is in it eleventh season, and we have A LOT of questions!

Like, is the marriage legal? And how successful has this experiment been in the past?

However, since the stars give up three months of their lives in Australia’s largest couples experiment, there’s one question we’re always asking – how much do the Married at First Sight contestants really get paid?

The brides and grooms aren’t paid that much on MAFS. (Image: Nine)

While some of them go on to make big money when the show ends, during the show, it’s a whole different kettle of fish.

While they’re filming, the participants are paid $150 a day with a $125 grocery allowance, leaving some of them unable to pay their rent!

“I am broke after being on the show. I couldn’t even make my rent payments with what we were being paid,” an anonymous contestant said recently.

“We would film late, so I’d be ordering takeaway most nights. I spent a bomb on outfits, hair and makeup, and to top it off, they didn’t even let us wear what we wanted.”

This isn’t the first time stars have spoken out against the show’s pitiful payments.

Season seven star Mikey Pembroke said the show’s contestants deserve to be compensated more, given “they are the ones putting themselves out there, and
then the channel makes millions and millions of dollars in advertising”!

Past groom Jesse Burford has spoken about how much the cast were paid in 2023. (Image: Getty)

MAFS 2023 groom Jesse Burford confessed the stars are paid $1,175 each week. While the details regarding their pay haven’t been disclosed including if this is per person or per couple and other factors.

However, that is a major salary boost from when Nassar Sultan, who is arguably one of season five’s most polarising contestants, revealed how much the stars were getting paid to give up their lives and appearing on the popular Channel Nine show.

“You get $150 for the day, that’s it,” Nasser told Now to Love. “But on top of that, you have to pay expenses – your living expenses with the woman that you marry.”

“It’s not $150 clear. You still have to pay rent if you’re renting, you’ve gotta pay your rego and it’s 12 hour filming days.”

Nasser revealed MAFS contestants get paid $150 per day, which he said barely covered the cost of living.

(Image: Nine Network)

According to Nasser, the Married at First Sight contracts states that contestants “get a per diem” or a daily allowance, so they’re not being “paid for work” but receiving money to cover expenses.

“That’s what you live on,” he said.

While this is information has already been widely publicised since the show’s inception, some other tidbits that Nasser told us were pretty surprising!

READ NEXT: Is Married At First Sight legal in Australia? Why the Marriage Act makes things complicated

Nasser claimed “villian” Davina Rankin was making $50 a day more than the other season five contestants.

(Image: Nine Network)

“None of our groceries were covered,” he said. “They filmed us going shopping and we had to shop at the same grocery store – which was really expensive, but it was out of our own money.”

“Gab and I would sometimes spend up to $70 a day on just living, so we didn’t have much left after that.”

While Nasser felt that $150 a day wasn’t sufficient to cover his living needs, he also expressed the fact that some of the other couples (especially the brides), were receiving more than he was.

“Sarah [Roza] and a few others, like Davina [Rankin], got more money,” he revealed. “They got $50 more a day. Basically, the more you did for the show, the more you got.”

Fingers crossed you have enough savings before going on the show!

(Image: Nine Network)

But it wasn’t only money that some of the brides were getting.

“The girls would message companies on Instagram and ask for free clothes to be sent to them, and so we’d be sitting there and these deliveries would show up.”

“Basically, they were getting everything that they wanted. If they cried, they got counselling, and to stay on the show, they asked for more money. It worked out really well for them.”

For those who have full-time jobs, they have to either take annual leave, unpaid holidays or even quit – but you know what they say, the cost of finding true love is priceless.

Of course, it can be a financial burden for contestants – but hopefully the fame and after-show perks (whiter teeth, hair extensions and invitations to events) make it all worth it.

The cost of finding true love is priceless.

(Images: Channel Nine)

However, Mikey Pembroke from the 2020 season claimed that participants don’t earn anything while appearing on MAFS.

Speaking on the I’ve Got News For You podcast, Mikey said that while contestants get paid money to “live off” during filming, this barely covers the cost of living.

“You don’t get paid at all – this is a thing that needs to change,” he said, adding that he pocketed “about 1,000 bucks” in profit during his MAFS stints.

Mikey Pembroke said contestants should be better compensated for giving up their personal lives and careers for filming.

(Image: Nine Network)

“But the show makes an incredible amount of money. And say you were on, you know, a TV show that does really well, the actors get paid more and more because it’s doing so well. And that’s the way it should be for MAFS.”

Mikey, who was paired with Natasha Spencer, said contestants should be properly compensated for giving up their personal lives and careers for filming.

“They’re the ones putting themselves out there, and then the channel makes millions and millions of dollars in advertising,” he continued.

Want more on Married At First Sight season nine? Check out the links below:

The Married at First Sight 2022 trailer and premiere date have been revealed – here’s what we know about the explosive new season

Is Married At First Sight real or fake? Let’s examine the evidence

A match made in MAFS: All the Married At First Sight couples who have stayed together after filming ended

Is Married At First Sight legal in Australia? Why the Marriage Act makes things complicated

How much do Married At First Sight contestants get paid in Australia?

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