Guest Speaker Budget Guide

Having facilitated thousands of celebrity connections between guest speakers and businesses, clubs, schools, associations, and more, the Pickstar team have pulled together our insights into this guest speaker budget guide to help you answer that frequently asked question, how much does it cost to hire a guest speaker?

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How much does it cost to hire a guest speaker?

The short answer is a guest speaker fee can be anywhere from nothing right up to £100k for a guest speaking engagement.

But there are so many factors impacting that cost.

Maybe you’ve got a budget you’re working with. Maybe you just want to know a rough estimate for a guest speaker fee to help formulate your budget.

The important thing is to go into this search with a flexible budget.

Factors impacting guest speaker costs

A 10-minute chat to a group of Year 10 students is going to have a very different fee when compared to a keynote speaker who will present for 90 minutes at a major conference.

You already know that, but have you considered these factors:

How much experience does the guest speaker have?

An expert in their field with years of speaking experience might command £50,000. But an up-and-coming athlete who wants to share their story with school students might be happy to work for £200.

How long the guest speaker’s commitment will be?

Not just the speech itself, but the travel to and from and any other commitments on the day.

How well-known is the guest speaker?

A celebrity guest speaker will be able to command a significant fee, as you’ll not only be engaging them for their expertise, but also for their social influence they bring to the event.

How well-aligned is the guest speaker with the occasion?

A large corporation wanting to engage clients by hiring an entertaining guest speaker can expect to pay more for the exact same guest speaker, speech length and commitment than would a charity or school. If the guest speaker is passionate about the audience they’ll be speaking to and passionate about the topic they’ll be speaking on, there’s a fair chance they’ll be prepared to speak for a lower fee.

Guest speaker cost

This is what you came here for, so let’s get down to it.

From experience at Pickstar, the following is a guide for British guest speaker fees, based on roughly 30-60 minutes of guest speaking, excluding flights and accommodation:

A quality speaker with a solid knowledge of their topic, talking about personal experiences. An example might be a former sports star talking about their challenges with mental health and how they overcame these challenges.

A well-known speaker with several years of experience speaking on a few different topics. This might be a talk on goal-setting from someone who has achieved at the highest level.

An experienced speaker with years of experience on a topic, a high level of expertise and is well known across the country.

A highly qualified guest speaker, renowned in their area and known in Australia and potentially around the world.

Lower budgets
Schools, sporting clubs and charities will likely be able to engage a guest speaker for under £1,000, but if the opportunity is commercial, expect £1,000 to be the starting fee.

The above guide is not exhaustive and certainly varies significantly from speaker to speaker and event to event. If a guest speaker is passionate about your organisation, they may be prepared to do it for less than they would another organisation.

Other things a guest speaker will require
Guest speakers need a level of information before they can accept or decline any opportunity. It’s a good idea to provide the following information:

  • Number of attendees
  • Audience demographic
  • Duration of event
  • Duration of speech
  • Formality of event
  • Presentation required (yes or no)

Travel and accommodation expenses

As many initial booking fees do not factor in travel costs, you will need to review speakers who are easily commutable to your location - or you can negotiate this within their booking fee to make things a lot easier.

As a general rule, if the person has to travel more than 100km, and it involves a flight/train, or requires accommodation, you should be covering the cost for the guest speaker.

Please be aware, some speakers will expect business class or similar. Just make sure this is covered upfront in your discussions and brief.

Explore Contra Deals

It's worth noting that some guest speakers may be prepared to lower their fee slightly for a part contra deal. If you have a product or service the speaker may use or require, you could consider including it so your business can save a few pounds in the overall booking fee.

Ready to book a guest speaker?

Pickstar has made the booking process super simple by providing a platform that enables users like yourself to submit a free request for a guest speaker. You have two options, can choose to search our stars here and apply directly to them or you can opt for submitting a request detailing your brief, budget and talent preferences, then stars apply for the job itself.

It's entirely up to you.

Start a request

Brief & Budget ready?

Submit a request