What is the minimum wage in the UK?

Many people dream of living and working in the United Kingdom. There is a legal National Minimum Wage (NMW) as the wages vary hugely in the UK. For persons over the age of 25, this is known as the National Living Wage, and it is aimed to ensure that companies pay an hourly rate above a minimum threshold for all workers in the UK.

What is the minimum wage in the UK?

In the United Kingdom, the minimum wage is determined by the age of the employee. It has been in place since 2005, and many changes have been made to the way it works overtime. The minimum wage applies to any worker aged 16 or over, i.e. you must be 16 years old to start working and receiving wages.

The National Living Wage is the minimum wage for eligible workers aged 25 and over. It's calculated as a gross hourly rate, and it's reviewed every April.

For the period April 2017 to March 2018, the National Living Wage paid to employees aged 25 or over, is £7.50 per hour. This has been increased to £8.21 in April 2019.


UK minimum wage per hour

Minimum wage from April 2019

25 years and older



21–24 years



18–20 years



Under 18 years






Who determines the minimum wages?

The National Minimum Wage is determined by the UK government. It’s reviewed every year, and most categories experience an annual increase in wages. However, as the system is complicated and based on the age of the employees, there have been years when employees of certain ages haven’t experienced any increment in their minimum wages.

What is the living wage in the United Kingdom?

The minimum wage is the same for everywhere you live in the country.

In many places in the UK, there is a gap between the National Minimum Wage and the amount required to live comfortably.

The London Living Wage is £10.20 per hour according to the Living Wage Foundation, while the minimum amount you need to live well anywhere in the UK is £8.75.


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