Which Marathon Pays The Most

When it comes to participating in marathons, there are numerous considerations that runners take into account. From the route and scenery to the level of competition, each marathon offers its unique appeal. However, one factor that often plays a significant role in a runner’s decision is the financial aspect. Which marathon pays the most? Let’s dive deep into the world of marathons and explore the top-paying races.

The World Marathon Majors

When discussing high-paying marathons, it is impossible to ignore the World Marathon Majors (WMM) series. Consisting of six races held annually, these marathons attract elite runners from around the globe. The races included in the WMM are:

  1. Boston Marathon
  2. Virgin Money London Marathon
  3. Berlin Marathon
  4. TCS New York City Marathon
  5. Tokyo Marathon
  6. Bank of America Chicago Marathon

Each of these races offers a substantial prize purse, with the winner receiving a significant portion of it. However, it is important to note that these marathons primarily cater to professional athletes and elite runners, and the chances for the general public to participate are limited.

Other High-Paying Marathons

While the World Marathon Majors hold the top positions in terms of prize money, there are several other marathons that offer substantial rewards. These races typically attract top athletes but also have a larger number of slots available for general participants. Some of the other high-paying marathons include:

  • Bank of America Chicago Marathon
  • Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon
  • BMW Berlin Marathon
  • TCS New York City Marathon
  • Bank of America Tokyo Marathon

These races not only provide an opportunity to compete against some of the best runners in the world but also offer a chance to earn a considerable amount of prize money.

The Importance of Sponsorship

When it comes to the prize money offered by marathons, sponsorships play a crucial role. Many races are backed by corporate sponsors who contribute to the prize pool. These sponsorships help attract top runners and make the event more financially rewarding for participants.

Additionally, the popularity and prestige of a marathon also impact the prize money it offers. Marathons that have been around for several years and have established themselves as iconic races tend to have higher prize pools due to increased sponsorships and media coverage.


While the World Marathon Majors take the lead in terms of prize money, several other marathons also offer significant rewards. Whether you are an elite runner aiming for the top prize or a passionate amateur looking for a challenging race, there are opportunities to participate in marathons that pay well.

It’s important to remember that the financial aspect should not be the sole factor when choosing a marathon to participate in. The overall experience, the course, and the atmosphere should also be taken into consideration. Remember, running a marathon is an incredible achievement regardless of the prize money involved.