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The Cost of Hiring a Soccer Referee

If you’re in charge of organizing a soccer game, whether it’s a local tournament or a friendly match, hiring a referee is an essential part of the process. However, many people are unsure of how much it typically costs to hire a soccer referee. In this article, we’ll explore the factors that influence the cost of hiring a soccer referee and provide a general overview of the expenses involved.

Factors Affecting the Cost

The cost of hiring a soccer referee can vary depending on several factors. The level of the game, the duration of the match, and the location are some of the primary factors that influence the cost. For instance, a referee for a professional soccer game will typically command a higher fee than one for a youth tournament. Additionally, the length of the game, whether it’s a full match or a shorter game, will also impact the cost. Finally, the location of the game can affect the fees, as referees may factor in travel expenses when determining their rates.

Typical Rates

The rates for hiring a soccer referee can vary, but there are some general guidelines that can help you estimate the cost. For local youth games, referees might charge anywhere from $30 to $50 per game. For more competitive or adult leagues, the fees can be higher, ranging from $50 to $100 or more per game. Professional referees who officiate at a higher level of play, such as college or semi-professional matches, can command fees upwards of $200 per game.

Additional Expenses

In addition to the base rate for hiring a referee, there may be additional expenses to consider. For example, if the game is being held at a venue that requires parking fees, the referee may factor those costs into their rate. If the game is scheduled during meal times, it is also customary to provide the referee with a meal or refreshments. These additional expenses should be budgeted for when calculating the total cost of hiring a referee.

Contracting a Referee Organization

Instead of hiring individual referees for each game, some leagues and organizations choose to contract with a referee organization. These organizations provide referees for all the games in a given league or tournament, which can streamline the process and ensure consistent officiating throughout the season. When working with a referee organization, the cost of hiring referees is usually included in the league fees or tournament registration costs. This can provide a more predictable and convenient approach to covering the expenses of hiring referees.


In conclusion, the cost of hiring a soccer referee can vary depending on a variety of factors, including the level of play, the duration of the game, and the location. Understanding these factors can help you budget for the expenses associated with hiring a referee for your soccer game. Whether you’re organizing a youth tournament or a professional match, it’s important to consider the impact of referee fees and any additional expenses on your overall budget. By being aware of the typical rates and additional costs associated with hiring a soccer referee, you can ensure that your game runs smoothly and that all the necessary officiating needs are met.