When it comes to joining a union, you should have all the facts. Union membership isn’t just about getting access to certain benefits and services; there are also fees associated with joining a union.

Knowing how much these fees are is essential for making sure that you get the most out of your union membership. In this article we will be looking at union fees in Australia, and how much they cost.

We’ll cover topics such as how much you’ll need to pay each week or month, what types of fees there are, and how you can save money when it comes to paying for your union membership.

What Are Union Fees?

Union fees are the charges paid by union members to belong to and receive services from a labor union. These fees typically cover the cost of union activities such as negotiating and enforcing collective bargaining agreements, representing members in disputes with employers and providing legal, educational, and other services to members.

Union fees may be a fixed amount or a percentage of a member’s salary, and they may be mandatory or optional depending on the laws of the jurisdiction and the terms of the union’s membership agreement.

How Much Are Union Fees In Australia

In Australia, union fees can vary depending on the type of union and the industry it represents. For example, Australian Workers’ Union (AWU) membership fees start at $1- per week for full-time workers, while United Voice membership fees start at $6 per week for part-time and $10 for casual workers. However, some unions may offer discounts or reduced rates for low-income earners.

Union fees are around $10 per week, but can be higher or lower, depending on how much you earn or how many hours you work per week. These fees are also fully tax deductible.

The number of union fees in Australia can vary depending on the union and the type of membership. On average, union fees can range from a few hundred dollars per year for basic membership to a few thousand dollars per year for more comprehensive coverage. It’s recommended to contact the specific union in question for more accurate and up-to-date information on their fees.

Why Do People Pay Union Fees?

Here is a list of reasons why people pay union fees:

  1. Improved working conditions, wages, and benefits: By negotiating and enforcing collective bargaining agreements, unions can help to improve the working conditions, wages, and benefits of their members.
  2. Legal representation and support: Unions provide legal representation and support to their members in disputes with employers, such as disputes over working conditions, wages, and benefits.
  3. Job security: Unions can help to protect the job security of their members by negotiating fair and stable working conditions.
  4. Collective bargaining power: By pooling the resources and bargaining power of their members, unions can negotiate more effectively on behalf of their members than individuals could on their own.
  5. Access to educational and training opportunities: Unions may provide access to educational and training opportunities for their members, such as courses on workplace safety, health and wellness, and other topics.
  6. Support for the labor movement: Some people believe that being a member of a union helps to support and strengthen the labor movement more broadly, and that this can have a positive impact on working people and society as a whole.
  7. Networking opportunities: Unions provide opportunities for members to network and connect with other working people, which can be valuable for personal and professional development.

Union fees in Australia are typically paid as a percentage of an employee’s salary and are deducted from their pay packet by their employer. The fees go towards the costs of running the union, such as salaries for staff and elected officials, administrative costs, and legal fees.

Whether or not to join a union is a personal decision, and there are pros and cons to consider before making the decision to sign up. However, for many workers in Australia, paying union fees is seen as a small price to pay for the benefits that unions provide.

How Can I Join A Union In Australia?

Joining a union is easy, and there are many ways to do it. The first step is to find the union that represents your industry or occupation. You can search for unions by name, industry, or location on the Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU) website.

Union membership gives you access to a range of benefits, including legal support, discounts on products and services, and training opportunities. It also gives you a say in how your workplace is run and makes it easier to negotiate better wages and conditions with your employer.

Do Union Members Get Paid More In Australia?

In general, unionized workers in Australia tend to earn higher wages and have better working conditions than non-unionized workers. Studies have shown that, on average, unionized workers in Australia earn higher wages and are more likely to receive benefits such as paid leave, flexible working hours, and training opportunities.

However, it’s important to note that the relationship between union membership and pay is complex and can vary depending on a variety of factors, including the industry, the size and type of employer, and the skills and experience of the worker.

Additionally, while unionized workers may earn higher wages on average, this is not always the case, and some non-unionized workers may earn higher wages than their unionized counterparts.

Of course, there are many factors that affect pay rates, such as the type of work, the industry, the geographical location, and the size of the company. But on average, union members in Australia earn about 15% more than non-union workers.

So if you’re thinking about joining a union, or if you’re already a member, you can expect to receive higher wages and better working conditions than those who don’t belong to a union.


In conclusion, union fees in Australia vary depending on the industry you are in and the type of membership you have. For most workers, union fees can range from a few dollars to hundreds of dollars a year.

It is important to research your options before enrolling so that you know what kind of benefits and services your chosen union offers and how much it will cost.

With this knowledge in hand, you’ll be better prepared to make an informed decision about joining or remaining with a trade union in Australia.

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