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May 13 2024 20:28

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New research has found the most countries with the least expensive freelancers, with South Africa placed 13th. 

The study, conducted by invoicing software company Bookipi, used freelancing platform Upwork to find how much freelancers in 40 different countries charge on average per job. They looked at several popular services, including logo design, video editing, and data entry. For each service in each country, the starting and end price were collected, and an average price overall was calculated.  

Colombia ranks as the country with the least expensive freelancers, with the average price of a job costing $72.13.

Following in second is Brazil, where the average price of hiring a freelancer was found to be $79.81. In third is Argentina with an average freelancer rate of $80.84 per job, they are also the second cheapest country for a virtual assistant freelancer.

Ranking as the fourth most expensive country to hire a freelancer is Jamaica, with an average rate of $88.63 per job. Rounding up the top five is Venezuela, with a cost of $93.41 per freelancing job.  

The top 20 countries with the least expensive freelancers 

Rank Country Average price per freelancing job 
1.  Colombia $72.13 
2.  Brazil $79.81 
3.  Argentina $80.84 
4.  Jamaica$88.63 
5.  Venezuela $93.41 
6.  Germany $102.35 
7.  Philippines $106.70 
8.  Sri Lanka $107.00 
9.  Kenya$111.99 
10.  Romania $113.21 
11. Tunisia $136.00 
12. Indonesia $136.44 
13. South Africa$138.88 
14. Bangladesh $145.63 
15. Bulgaria $148.12 
16. Malaysia $150.00 
17. Egypt$157.16 
18. Nigeria $163.00 
19. Georgia $186.25 
20. Poland $186.65 

At the other end of the scale, Australia has the most expensive freelancers, costing an average of $594.56 per job – 724% more than hiring an Australian freelancer on average. 

India follows as the second east expensive, with an average rate of $501.00 per freelancing job, while Morocco ranked third least expensive with an average cost of $402.03.  

“Our team members come from various corners of the world – Asia, Africa, Europe, and America and their life stories and experiences contribute to our team’s richness. Working closely together has taught me an immense amount about appreciating different cultures. As a result, we were interested in how these different experiences are reflected through the costs of freelance workers worldwide,” Tim Lee, CEO and founder of Bookipi, said.

“Typically, countries with robust economies and high living standards tend to host the most expensive freelancers, which the data reflects by finding Australia as the most expensive freelance country. Although this is true for India, the second country to appear in the ranking, freelancers can command a higher rate thanks to their specialized skills and expertise in industries such as software development, IT services, and digital marketing,” he said.

“We hope this ranking will help empower freelance workers around the world to know their worth and be more confident in fairly pricing their services,” he said. 

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A data scrape of the freelance site Upwork was carried out, in order to find which countries are charging the most money for freelancing services. 119 countries were initially included in the analysis, but due to data limitations, this left 40 countries that could be compared and ranked fairly. 

This scrape gathered pricing data on freelancer projects which fell into one the following ten categories; Logo Design, Video Editing, Data Entry, Virtual Assistant, SEO, Social Media Management, Resume Writing, Creative Writing, Web Programming, Mobile Apps. The starting price and ending price for each project was gathered, and a median price for each project was calculated based on these two figures. The country location of the freelancer who hosting the project was also gathered. 

For the overall country ranking, the median price of freelance services was based on a minimum of 10 projects for each country, to avoid any anomalies. For the category-specific rankings, a minimum of three project listings were used. 

Full country ranking: 

Rank  Country  Average cost per freelance job 
1.  Australia $594.56 
2.  India $501.00 
3.  Morocco $402.03 

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