Chess Grandmasters salaries: How Do chess grandmasters earn money

Chess Grandmasters salaries: How Do chess grandmasters earn money

Written by: Emadeldin Teama

Chess Grandmasters salaries: How Do chess grandmasters earn money?

Chess is a very competitive sport.It requires a lot of effort, training and hard work. In this article we are going to discover the way strong chess players earn a decent amount of money on regular basis from chess.

What are the main sources of income for a chess grandmaster?

There are many ways a chess grandmaster can earn money. First He can earn through competitive open tournaments all over the world. The prizes of some these tournaments goes up to 1 million dollars and much more. In 2020, In the chess world cup top players from each country compete against each other, the prizes were 1.6 million dollars!!

Chess Grandmasters also play in chess leagues earning an average salary of 2000$ to 3000$ per month just for participating in different teams and clubs playing few games per month.

These are the main ways which is only 10% of the methods for earning for strong players!

What are the other sources of income for chess grandmasters?

There are other ways through which a chess grandmaster would earn steady income.

1-Coaching: chess grandmaster can earn a fortune teaching kids and young talents to become grandmasters themselves. They can share their deep knowledge and understanding of the chess game with students which enriches their understanding and increases the players’ performance

2-Making DVDs with Chessbase or writing a book: Chess grandmasters have a deep insights for different chess positions. They play these openings, middle games and endgames all the time and they know so much that a club or average chess player simply doesn’t. Writing a book or making a DVD about a certain chess topic is a simple way to gain passive income for them. They would have to do the effort only once and money would flow in all the time as the chess fans buy them!

3-Commenting on live games: While this method requires the grandmaster to have extra skills. Some grandmaster like Maurice Ashely became very famous in the chess world presenting live commentary to the strong tournaments and entertaining all the chess fans with his live analysis and interesting discussions about different positions on the board!

There are so many other methods that comes to life at the new era of the internet. For example, streaming chess on famous platforms such as Twitch, gaining followers in social media. Being second to top 100 players and so much more!

How do famous Grandmasters earn from streaming chess?


Due to the fact that internet became an integral part of our lives. Streaming chess has become so popular lately. Some grandmasters such as Hikaru Nakamura earned a fortune from streaming, getting sponsors and followers that are close to a million player on Twitch Platform alone. you can learn more about how did Hikaru Nakamura earn a fortune of almost 50 million dollars through chess»» Here is the link :

Lately it has become a very decent way to earn money for Top 10 players in the world. They are streaming regularly their favorite sport while communicating with the chess fans. This gets those strong talented players close to the average chess player in addition to that. New players start to get interested watching how fast those grandmaster play accurate moves and explaining their ideas live!

Can a strong chess player make a decent money through chess without being a Grandmaster?

The answer to this questions is Yes!.

Chess international players and strong players earn money using the same methods. Some of them make videos and publish these videos on Youtube gaining a lot of followers. Through ads attached to their videos, they tend to earn a little money over time which can be a good extra on the side.

Some players have a good charisma and nice sense of humor that attract normal chess fans to watch them when they stream on Twitch.

They also earn money by teaching very young kids the basics of chess and detecting talented players at an early age in their local clubs.

We would like to also add that there are many tournaments which are made for average players and even amateurs. They have a decent amount of money for prizes depending on the sponsors of the tournament. The current world chess amateur tournament would be held in Greece in 16th of October with decent prizes. First place actually earn 1000 euro which is not bad considering the fact that you must be under 2300 fide rating! There are also so many prizes for everyone in this tournaments and many more tournaments like it all over the globe.

What is the net worth of Top grandmasters in 2021?

In this section , we gathered all data from different resources to make a list of the wealthiest chess players and their net worth !

1. Hikaru Nakamura – $50 Millions According to Wealthy Genius, the richest chess player of all time is Hikaru Nakamura, who has a net worth of approximately $50 million. At the age of 15, Nakamura became the youngest American to become the Grandmaster. He is now a five-time United States champion.

2. Fabiano Caruana – $13 Millions The second richest chess player of all time is Fabiano Caruana, and he is the most successful Italian player in history. He first made his name in 2007, when he was only 14. In that year, he won his first Italian Chess Championship and held the title of Grandmaster in both Italy and the United States. Caruana won the Italian title again in 2008, 2010, and 2011.

3. Magnus Carlsen – $8 Millions Magnus Carlsen is a professional Norwegian chess player who began competing in chess competitions as a child. In 2002, he came second in the World U12 Chess Championship. He is the current world champion and the strongest player in the world for now !!

4. Garry Kasparov – $5 Millions Garry Kasparov first began playing chess when he was just ten years old. He became the youngest undisputed World Chess Champion in 1985, when he was only 22, after defeating the reigning champion, Anatoly Karpov. Kasparov retained the title until 1993

5. Judit Polgar – $5 Millions Judit Polgar is a Hungarian chess player and the only woman to appear on the list of the ten richest chess players of all time. Many people consider her the best female chess player of all time, as she has won multiple competitions. She first won the Grandmaster title in 1991, when she was just 15. Polgar is also the only woman in history to be ranked in the top ten of chess players.

6. Teimour Radjabov – $5 Millions Telmour Radjabov became the second-youngest person to win the Grandmaster title, as he achieved this at the age of 14. He became internationally famous in chess circles in 2003 when he won a tournament against Garry Kasparov.

7. Maxime Vachier-Lagrave – $5 Millions Maxime Vachier-Lagrave has a net worth of $5 million, thanks to success in chess competitions throughout his professional chess career. At the age of 14, he was awarded the FIDE Grandmaster title. He then won the French championship in 2007. By 2016, he was ranked number two in the world

8. Levon Aronian – $3 Millions Levon Aronian is from Armenia, and he is considered a national hero in his own country. In 2009, he was awarded the title of Honored Master of Sports of the Republic of Armenia. In January 2021, Aronian was ranked number six in the world.

9. Viswanathan Anand – $3 Millions After achieving the Grandmaster title in 1988, Viswanathan Anand became the first Grandmaster from India. However, he had already achieved great success prior to winning the title, as he was a child prodigy who played amazing chess at a very young age.

10. Vladimir Borisovich Kramnik – $2 Millions From 2000 to 2006, Vladimir Borisovich Kramnik was the Classical World Chess Champion. He was then the undisputed World Chess Champion in both 2006 and 2007. Kramnik has also had huge success at the Chess Olympiads and has won three team gold medals and three individual medals.