When hiring a professional voice actor for your project, it is crucial to have a basic understanding of the standard voice over rates in the industry. The right talent can make or break your project, so it is essential to hire the right voice actor at the right price point.
This voice over rates guide provides you with a detailed overview of what voice actors typically charge for recording a voice over based on the language you target and the nature of the project.
If you are a Voice-Over artist, this guide about how much voice actors make will be helpful.
Industry Standard Voice Over Rates
Industry standard voice over rates can vary based on a number of variables. While there are too many variables to list, here is a list of the most important factors that will affect the overall cost:
- The size of the project and the amount of time required to record will have a direct impact on the final cost (this Words to Time Calculator for a Voice-Over Recording Session is helpful).
- The nature of the project will also determine the cost. For example, commercial voice over rates are higher than rates for IVR recordings.
- The type of voice talent you hire for your project will also affect the overall cost. For example, voice over talent rates for foreign languages is typically higher than recording in English.
- The reach of your project, whether it is a broadcast or non-broadcast job is also important. For broadcast jobs, the cost is determined by the duration of the finished project, the market where it will air, and the category of the project. For non-broadcast projects, the cost will be determined by the length of the script, the experience of the voice actor, and more.
Voice-Over Talent Rates
Typical voice over rates will vary greatly based on the language you choose for your project. Here is a breakdown of the rates you can expect for English-speaking voice actors and foreign-language-speaking voice actors.
English Speaking Voice-Over Actor Rates
Depending on the length of your script and the nature of your project, you can hire a voice actor on an hourly basis, for a half day or a full day. This will of course vary between agencies and even voice over artists. At GoLocalise, for example, we include studio rental, a professional sound engineer, and basic file clean up within the costs, as well as the VO artist rate. Here is what you can expect in terms of cost.
The rates listed above can vary greatly based on a number of factors and are often negotiable, especially for half day and full day rates. Contact GoLocalise to get a quote for Voice-Over projects.
Foreign Speaking Voice-Over Actor Rates
Voice over rates per hour for foreign language-speaking voice actors are similar to English-speaking voice actors but with variations. The rates can vary based on the language because foreign voice actors are typically native speakers.
GoLocalise in the UK has a vast network of voice actors in over 300 languages, accents, and dialects. Based on the specific needs of your project, you can easily connect with a voice actor that fits your budget.
Typical Voice Over Rates
One of the biggest factors that influence typical voice over rates in UK is whether the project is non-broadcast or broadcast. Rates will also depend on the nature of the project, such as audiobook narration, video games, e-Learning, and IVR or On-hold messages recording.
Non-Broadcast Voice Over Rates
Here is a breakdown of the voice over rates you can typically expect for non-broadcast projects.
Private or Internal Usage Only
For voice overs for non-broadcast purposes, you’ll only need to pay the VO artist’s BSF (aka ‘Basic Studio / Session Fee’) and no additional usage fees need to be paid on top of this usually. For non-broadcast voice over rates to be applied, the end product will have to be inaccessible to the general public. This means it can’t be hosted online, or used for any purposes other than private usage.
Typical voice over rates for audiobook narration will vary quite a lot depending on where you source your VO talent. Non-professional voice over artists can be sourced relatively cheaply, though be warned – the quality and professionalism can be risky. Some top voice over agencies will charge per finished audio hour. At GoLocalise, our costs are formed by adding the voice over recording fee (aka BSF) to a usage fee which covers the client’s right to use the voice over artist’s voice in their audiobook. This usage fee can vary somewhat between VO artists, but will usually be in the following ranges:
|Per book||£100 – 600||€100 – 700||$100 – 780|
IVR and Phone Messages
For IVR & on-hold phone messages, you won’t usually need to pay any additional usage fees to the voice over talent, so the typical voice over rates for IVR would fall under the BSF only costs.
e-Learning and Corporate Narration
For e-learning projects, these are more often than not used only internally, so no additional usage fees are required in that case and the BSF costs can be used. If the e-learning voice over recording will be hosted online, then like corporate-style explainer video voice overs, an additional non-commercial usage fee would need to be applied from the Usage Fee table.
|Per book||£100 – 600||€100 – 700||$100 – 780|
Video game projects are an interesting one, and can vary a great deal. For example main characters in a game might require several hours of recording each, whereas you might also have requirements for a couple of lines each for an NPC voice over (non-playable characters). We’d usually approach this with a similar tactic of paying for studio time, plus a usage fee, but the usage fees in this section should be seen only as a very rough guide, for a mid-tier game. For example all AAA video game voice overs would require much higher fees than those listed below.
|Per game||£100 – 600||€100 – 700||$100 – 780|
Broadcast Voice Over Rates
Broadcast voice over rates listed here refer to projects that are used for running ads on the internet, radio, and on TV. Generally, the prices are again based on firstly a voice over recording fee (BSF) to cover the VO talent’s time in the studio, with an additional usage fee paid on top which varies depending on which media it’s being used on (e.g. radio, TV, internet, or a combination of these) and for how long it’s going to be used. The rates below are (very rough) ranges for up to one year of usage on UK TV. Other countries’ rates will vary quite a lot, and there is also a lot of variation between individual voice over artists depending on their experience too!
|Usage Fee (TV)||GBP||Euro||USD|
|Per ad / video||£700 – 2100||€700 – 2450||$700 – 2730|
|Usage Fee (Online)||GBP||Euro||USD|
|Per ad / video||£400 – 1200||€400 – 1400||$400 – 1560|
Voice-Over Recording Costs
Voice-over projects are complex and involve much more than just hiring a voice actor for recording. GoLocalise (leading Voice-Over agency in London) offers a range of managed language services that will take care of your entire project from start to finish. Here is a list of some of the most popular services we offer:
- Audio and Video transcription in any language
- Audio and Video Translation from English to foreign languages and vice versa
- Proofreading by a second translator
- Subtitling and captioning in over 300 languages (check our Subtitling Rates Guide.)
- Casting of voice actors
- Access to professional recording studios
- Live direction of voice over projects
- Cleaning and editing of audio files
- Mixing of the recorded audio
- Encoding video
- Delivery through FTP
With over 15 years of experience in the voice over industry, GoLocalise can help you find the right voice over talent in over 300 languages.
Our in-house project managers, sound directors, top-notch equipment, and software will ensure that you can get the best quality voice overs for a variety of content such as educational and corporate videos, business presentations, radio and TV, e-Learning courses, and more.