Great apprenticeships - paid right

A good apprenticeship is a route to a rewarding career. But some apprentices are not even paid the legal minimum wage. We want to help apprentices get good training, be paid right and treated well.
Our objectives

The apprentice minimum wage at the moment is very low – only £3.70 per hour for a first year apprentice. But Government statistics show that 1 in 7 apprentices are being underpaid, with some sectors such as hairdressing and construction more likely to be underpaid. We want: 

  • Apprentices to know their rights from day one
  • Colleges and training providers to take a more active part in protecting the apprentices they teach
  • To help apprentices get good training, be paid right and treated well.

TUC research has found that up to a third of all apprentices are being cheated out of the minimum wage. This is backed up by the most recent Apprentice Pay Survey who found that apprentices are disproportionality underpaid despite being a minority in the labour market.

The law says apprentices must be paid at least a certain amount for every hour in work and in training (whether on or off the job). It's one of the most fundamental rights for anyone in work. Register to attend - 3 December 2018 - City of Bristol

But the rules can get complicated.

At the South West TUC, we want to do something about this.

We believe it’s unfair to put the burden on young apprentices to confront their manager when they’re just starting out and at the bottom rung of the organisation.  

Colleges and training providers should take a more active part in protecting the apprentices they teach.

But it's also important that apprentices get to know their rights from day one.

Using our simple calculator below, apprentices can find out what their minimum wage is per hour, and then check their pay matches up. 


What should an apprentice be paid? 



Laws have been created to make sure that whatever job you do, you must be paid a proper wage.

This is called the "National Minimum Wage".

All workers and apprentices in the UK over compulsory school leaving age must be paid the national minimum wage. 

There are different rates of the minimum wage.

The rate for you depends on your age, and as an apprentice, the year that you are at in your apprenticeship. 

For all first year apprentices, whatever their age, the national minimum wage is £3.70 for every hour worked and trained. 

After 12 months, or when you start your second year (and even your third or fourth year), your minimum wage changes. This is because after your first year, your age is now important.

Looking at the table below, if you're 19 years old and in our first year, you must be paid £3.70 per hour at least! When you start you second year of your apprenticeship, your employer must now pay you £5.90 per hour. That's a big pay rise.  If you're 21 or 25 years old, you should get paid even more. 

Use our PayCheck Calculator and check your pay today.

Know your rights. Don't let your pay slip.