How much do chess players earn per year? Are they millionaires?

Although chess is one of the most incredible games ever created, unlike other sports, there isn’t a lot of money swooning around it. However, most people wonder how much money do chess players actually make? Of course, it’s not the equivalent of what a Formula 1 driver or an NBA player would earn, but given that chess is played all over the world, are chess players millionaires?


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It is actually very difficult to calculate how much money chess players earn in a year, but talking about the best players in the game, surely they are millionaires. Most international tournaments played today are worth a million dollars and there are a host of tournaments played every year compounding a chess player‘s wealth.


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Millionaire Chess Players

Famous players earn a lot of money because their source of income is not limited to playing chess. Here is the list of some of the richest chess players today.

Magnus Carlsen

The Norwegian Grandmaster has been the World Chess Champion for over a decade now. Going from a chess board to a chess app, Magnus has become a millionaire today. His net worth is valued be $8 million.

Garry Kasparov

The Russian grandmaster, Garry Kasparov, is one of the best players in chess history. The former world champion retired from competitive chess in 2005 and his net worth is $5 million.

Hikaru Nakamura

Well, to be the richest chess player in the world, you don’t have to be world number one. The American Grandmaster is the most-watched chess player on Twitch. With a net worth of $50 million, he has quite the online chess fandom.

Fabien Caruana

The most successful Italian Grandmaster is also the second richest chess player in the world. Fabiano Caruana has a net worth of $13 million.

Judit Polgar


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Men aren’t the only millionaire chess players. With a net worth of $5 million, the Hungarian grandmaster is wealthier than many male chess players.


Alexandra Kosteniuk is the ONLY woman to compete against 15 male-dominated line-ups, including Magnus Carlsen

about 17 hours ago


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Although chess isn’t as rewarding for everyone as it is for the players mentioned above, it could be an amazing career choice. Chess is no longer limited to tournaments and matches. You could be a YouTube or Twitch streamer and make a lot of money.

Twenty years ago you might have had limited options, but today chess could be a lucrative career choice for you.

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