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The Average Starting Salaries Around the World

So you are fresh out of school and you are now expected and required to join the rat race. Unless you are a graduate of a top school like Harvard, Oxford, Cambridge or Yale, it may be wise to temper

So you are fresh out of school and you are now expected and required to join the rat

race. Unless you are a graduate of a top school like Harvard, Oxford, Cambridge or

Yale, it may be wise to temper your expectations on how much you could earn from

your first job. Chances are, you may only get the minimum wage.

The number, however, may vary depending on the country where you are located.

Some countries offer decent minimum wages, thus allowing its workers to live

properly on their starting salaries.

12 Highest Starting Salaries and Minimum Wages in the World

For accurate and correct comparison, the hourly wages are converted to US dollars.

11 New Zealand - $10.83 per hour

New Zealand offers a three-tier minimum wage structure. For those who are 18

years old and above, the starting salary per hour should at least be NZ$13.75. Kiwis

who are 16 to 17 years old, plus those who are still in training, receive a starting

wage of NZ$11 per hour. There is no law mandating the minimum hourly salary of

those below 16 years old, though that person most likely should be in school anyway

rather than in the workforce.

10 Canada - $10.95 per hour

The starting salary and minimum wage in Canada actually depends on the province

and territory. The lowest starting salary is in Alberta that only mandates an hourly

wage of C$9.75. This is even lower for servers of liquor as they are only paid C$9.05

per hour. In British Columbia, the starting salary is at least C$10.25 per hour, with

liquor servers given C$9 per hour. Manitoba has the same rate, though construction

workers are given a higher minimum salary. Nova Scotia’s starting salary is, at the

minimum, C$10.30 per hour, though it can go down to C$9.65 per hour for those

who have less than three months experience. Ontario’s average minimum starting

wage is C$10.25 per hour, though students under 18 may only get C$9.60

per hour, while homeworkers can get as much as C$11.28 per hour. Alberta and

Yukon adjust the amount depending on the annual consumer price index.

9 Netherlands - $11.77 per hour

In Euro figures, the Netherlands minimum starting salary is €8.4775 per hour. The

amount, however, applies only to those who are at least 23 years old. The employer

can adjust the figure if the employee is below 23 years old. The amount may vary

between 30 to 85 percent of the minimum wage depending on the worker’s age.

8 Ireland - $12.01 per hour

Ireland has a straightforward minimum wage structure. That means that even those

starting out on their first jobs can expect to receive an hourly rate of at least €8.65

per hour.

7 San Marino - $12.22 per hour

Like Ireland, San Marino also has a straightforward wage structure for those starting

out and earning only the minimum. Even workers fresh out of school should receive

at least €8.80 per hour.

6 Belgium - $12.67 per hour

Belgium adjusts the rate of its salaries depending on the person’s age and on

the length of service the person has provided to the company. For those who are

21 years old, the starting salary is only €9.12 per hour. Once you complete six

months of service and provided you are already at least 21 and a half years old, the

minimum salary goes up to €9.36 per hour. This further goes up once you already

have a full year of service, as all those experiences will be rewarded by an increase

in the minimum salary to €9.47 per hour. Aside from this, you can also expect to

receive substantial and extensive social benefits from the government.

5 France - $13.10 per hour

France has always been known for its high cost of living. To allow its workers to cope

properly, the mandated minimum starting salary is €9.43 per hour.

4 Monaco - $13.76 per hour

Monaco follows the structure that is followed in France. Workers can expect a

starting salary of at least €9.43 per hour in the principality, though they add to that

with an additional five percent adjustment.

3 Luxembourg – $15.05 per hour

Luxembourg employers can adjust the starting salary that they give to its workers

depending on their respective level of qualification. The absolute minimum amount

is €10.8335 per hour. This is given to workers that employers deem as unqualified.

If the employee is qualified, the employer can give him an additional 20 percent.

Adolescent workers, however, can only expect to receive a starting amount of less

than 25 percent of the mandated level.

2 Australia - $16.45 per hour

The starting salary for workers down under is set on the federal level by Fair Work

Australia. The amount may vary depending on the worker’s experience and age. For

those below 18 years old, the starting salary may be as low as A$9.22. For those

new to the job, the starting salary on the first year can be as low as A$10.22 per

hour. The amount then builds up as the employee gains further experience. By the

fourth year, the salary should be at least A$17.65 per hour.

1 Starting Out with the Minimum in the United States

Notably absent from the above list is the United States, the nation with the most

powerful economy in the world. Under federal law, the starting salary should at least

be $7.25 per hour, which is way below the numbers of those in the top 10. Those

who receive tips only get paid $2.13 per hour, though with the warning that if the

tips do not get the worker’s salary to $7.25, the employer is required to fill in the

difference.

Wyoming, Georgia and Arkansas have state laws that mandate lower minimum

starting wages than the federal rate. Most of the states follow the federal rate.

Oregon and Washington have the highest minimum wage rates, with Oregon

mandating $8.95 per hour that adjusts with inflation, while Washington requires a

minimum of $9.19 per hour. Those who are 14 and 15 years old, however, may be

paid a starting salary of as low as $7.68 per hour.

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The Average Starting Salaries Around the World