Massage Therapist Salary Guide & Career Outlook

Massage therapists in the United States see a median annual pay of $30,225, and in Canada, the pay is similar at C$42,322 ($31,565). Those who work in New Zealand have a relatively low salary at NZ$30,273 ($20,991). The pay is comparable in India and South Africa at Rs 444,000 ($6,908) and R117,916 ($8,561). This guide covers the massage therapist salary ranges in 7 countries. After this section, there will be a focus on the impact of experience and industry.

How Much Does a Massage Therapist Make per Year by Country?

Massage Therapist Salary USCanadaUKAustraliaNew ZealandIndiaSouth Africa
Hourly Pay$19.24C$35.61 ($26.56)E8.30 ($8.79)AU$25.85 ($19.39)NZ$35.00 ($24.27)Rs 213.46* ($3.32)R100.00 ($7.27)
Annual Pay$30,225C$42,322 ($31,565)E20,156 ($21,348)AU$53,420 ($40,075)NZ$30,273 ($20,991)Rs 444,000 ($6,908)R117,916 ($8,561)

An (*) indicates that the hourly rate was not available and was extrapolated from the annual salary.

massage therapist salary

Massage Therapist Salary Influencing Factors

Massage therapists get paid an hourly rate than an annual salary. In addition, tips and bonuses are normal for many massage therapists. The salary ranges described below come from self-reported data to Payscale.

The only country without enough data to report was India. The salary information from India is under the title of occupational therapist.

1. Location

How Much Does a Massage Therapist Make in the US?

Massage Therapist Salary USPer YearPer Hour
Minimum $16,788 $11.69
Maximum $51,076 $55.62
Bonus $198.66 – $4,055 No additional pay
Comission/Overtime $97.87 – $28,637 $10.19 to $50.34
Total Pay$21,931 – $95,023

How Much Does a Massage Therapist Make in Canada?

Massage Therapist Salary CanadaPer YearPer Hour
Minimum C$27,021 C$14.77,863
Maximum C$61,851 C$81.39
Bonus C$1,210 C$0.61 – C$9.93
Overtime No additional pay C$40.00
Total PayC$29,753 – C$156,853

How Much Does a Massage Therapist Make in the UK?

Massage Therapist Salary UKPer YearPer Hour
Minimum E11,962 E1.44
Maximum E42,100 E1.89
Bonus E983 E1.63
Comission No additional pay E1.00
Total PayE13,802 – E53,215

How Much Does a Massage Therapist Make in Australia?

Massage Therapist Salary AustraliaPer YearPer Hour
Minimum AU$24,190 AU$1.15
Maximum AU$70,710 AU$1.88
Bonus AU$2,000 AU$1.59
Comission AU$600 AU$1.00
Total Pay AU$37,759 – AU$99,005

How Much Does a Massage Therapist Make in New Zealand?

Massage Therapist Salary New ZealandPer YearPer Hour
Minimum NZ$28,112 NZ$1.40
Maximum NZ$123,647 NZ$1.41
Bonus No Additional Pay NZ$1.00
Comission No Additional Pay No Additional Pay
Total Pay NZ$29,933 – NZ$125,637

How Much Does a Massage Therapist Make in India?

Massage Therapist Salary IndiaPer YearPer Hour
Minimum Rs 231,502 Rs 111.29
Maximum Rs 628,439 Rs 302.13
Bonus No Additional Pay No Additional Pay
Comission No Additional Pay No Additional Pay
Total Pay Rs 232,533 – Rs 1,040,000

How Much Does a Massage Therapist Make in South Africa?

Massage Therapist Salary South AfricaPer YearPer Hour
Minimum R17,879 R1.69
Maximum R205,368 R1.76
Bonus R8,000 R1.67
Comission No Additional Pay No Additional Pay
Total Pay R120,000 – R220,000

2. Experience

The income picture for massage therapists in Canada increases significantly from 10 to years of experience from around C$53,000 to C$99,000. In comparison, pay in Australia does not increase until one has at least 10 years of experience and it increases slightly. The salary for massage therapists in the United Kingdom actually goes down sharply for those in their late-career. However, only 1 percent of the respondents fit that category so that decrease is not representative of a significant sample. In the United States, pay follows a logical, linear increase over time.

The most common category of experience in Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, and the United States is 1 to 4 years. The other countries did not have data points for most frequent level of experience. This data matters because it skews the salary ranges. If one can assume that pay generally increases with experience, then the majority of information coming from those with less than 4 years of experience would skew the results toward entry-level salaries.

3. Industry

In the United States, there are approximately 168,000 massage therapists. Self-employment is very common in this position. There are different regulations for massage therapists. In the United States, they are required to have a license.

The highest paying industries for massage therapists are massage therapy schools, individual services, companies and enterprises, home health care, and specialty hospitals. This represents a very small segment of the overall employment spectrum for massage therapists. The states with the highest concentration of massage therapists are Alaska, Hawaii, Colorado, Washington, and Nevada. There is overlap between the highest mean salary in that Alaska is also the top paying state. Other states with a high salary are New York, Vermont, Delaware, and Washington.

Schedule & Working Hours

Approximately half of massage therapists are self-employed. Half of these professionals also work part-time. Massage therapists who are not self-employed will often work for a chain of massage therapy locations.

Massage therapists will see around 5 or 6 patients a day depending on the length of the massage. It is a physically demanding job and overuse injuries can occur such as carpal tunnel syndrome.

Bonuses & Benefits

As it is a practice-oriented field, massage therapy schools prepare students for employment immediately upon graduation. Another benefit to being a message therapist is that they can pursue an official license. This provides a level of validity to the profession.

One of the biggest benefits to the job is that they have a lot of flexibility in their hours, especially true for those who are self-employed. This also means that a massage therapist is in control of their own work and specializations. One of the drawbacks of being self-employed is the lack of employee-provided benefits. There can be an option for some of these benefits for massage therapists employed by a business. The table below shows healthcare benefits provided by country.

CountryUnited StatesCanadaUnited KingdomAustraliaNew ZealandIndiaSouth Africa
Medical193697221340
Dental1431010010
Vision1019000010
None79609193788860

Career Outlook

The job outlook for massage therapists in the United States is 22 percent through the year 2024. This is a much higher than average job outlook. The increase in the use of licenses to certify their work along with an increased demand for their provided services increases the job openings. Most people still consider massage therapy as a discretionary form of income. Therefore, people will not spend their money on getting a massage when finances are tight.

There are limitations to a massage therapy career trajectory. No well-rounded education will be provided due to the practical nature of their education. They could pursue additional schooling in athletic training or physical therapy in order to expand their career options.

The majority of massage therapists are women. In Canada and Australia, 86 percent are female while in the United Kingdom the number is 82 percent and in the United States, it is 81 percent.

Conclusion

Massage therapists see a wide salary range depending on where they work. Freelancers will charge higher rates than massage therapy chains. However, they also have to pay for their own supplies and choose their own benefits, if needed. If you enjoy helping people and learning techniques to promote health and wellness then pursuing a massage therapy career could be a smart decision.

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