The UK Rules
Hourly Payment Rates

NMW 2020/21: Minimum Wage Rates

As a rule, National Minimum Wage rates change every October in the United Kingdom. Whereas, the rate for the National Living Wage changes in April.

The information in this guide lists the current rates of pay that employers need to pay their staff and workers in the United Kingdom.

MINIMUM HOURLY PAY: The lowest hourly pay rate allowed for workers increases most years. The main aim is to provide an annual boost to their standard of living.

Even so, the actual hourly rate that you may get depends on your age and whether you are working as an apprentice.

Note: The rates for the National Minimum Wage 2020/21 are also available in Welsh language. Read 'Cyfraddau'r Isafswm Cyflog Cenedlaethol a’r Cyflog Byw Cenedlaethol' (Cymraeg).

To qualify for the most current increase in hourly pay you must be at least:

NMW Rates 2020/21

You must be at least 25 years old to qualify for the National Living Wage. From the age of sixteen (16) you will have entitlement to the National Minimum Wage.

Year Age 25 (and over) Age 21 -24 Age 18 - 20 Under 18 Apprentice
April 2020 £8.72 £8.20 £6.45 £4.55 £4.15

Rates for Apprentices

National Minimum Wage rates and pay scales did not exist for apprentices before 2010. They calculated the age groups using a different system back then.

Apprentices are now entitled to the apprentice wage rate for their age unless they are:

Note: An apprentice would get the minimum wage for their age if they are 19 or older and have completed the first year of their apprenticeship. The apprenticeships guide has further details on the rights for apprentices.

Previous NMW Rates

Year Age 25 (and over) Age 21 -24 Age 18 - 20 Under 18 Apprentice
April 2019 to March 2020 £8.21 £7.70 £6.15 £4.35 £3.90
April 2018 to March 2019 £7.83 £7.38 £5.90 £4.20 £3.70
April 2017 to March 2018 £7.50 £7.05 £5.60 £4.05 £3.50
October 2017 to March 2018 £7.20 £6.95 £5.55 £4.00 £3.40

Note: The online minimum wage calculator allows workers and employers to check wage payments. You can also contact the Acas helpline if your NMW or National Living Wage is not getting paid correctly.

National Minimum Wage Rates 2020 to 2021 in United Kingdom