DEMAND AN END TO POVERTY THIS GENERAL ELECTION
TAKE ACTION
Activism

How do Big Issue sellers make money?

Our vendors are running their own micro-businesses. Here's how they make money

Vendor Nick Cuthbert

Big Issue vendor Nick on his pitch in Truro. Photo: Exposure Photo Agency

Big Issue vendors all over the UK are working hard in all weathers to earn a living. 

The Big Issue group exists to support people who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless, are long-term unemployed, or are in need of extra cash to avoid falling into debt. In these unpredictable times, we provide an opportunity for people to earn their own income.

Change a Big Issue vendor’s life this Christmas by purchasing a Winter Support Kit. You’ll receive four copies of the magazine and create a brighter future for our vendors through Christmas and beyond.

The Big Issue seller on your local high street isn’t earning an hourly wage while they’re standing out there in all weathers. They’re running their own micro-business. They have outgoings and have to turn a profit just like any other enterprise out there.

Vendors buy their magazines from The Big Issue for £2 each and sell them to their customers for £4 a time.

This Christmas, the magazine is packed with more pages and the cover price has gone up to £4.50. Sellers pay £2.25 to buy the magazine, pocketing an extra 25p for each magazine they sell to earn extra money over the festive period.

We’re also helping vendors bridge the digital divide.

Many Big Issue vendors now accept contactless payments as well as cash. Last year, our frontline teams helped 1,319 vendors to go cashless, including just over 400 new vendors all over the UK.

Readers can also subscribe directly to their local vendor if they are unable to go see them in person. Sellers still get 50 per cent of the net proceeds from subscriptions, just like buying it in person, and readers can find their local vendor and subscribe directly on the Big Issue vendor map.

Support the Big Issue

For over 30 years, the Big Issue has been committed to ending poverty in the UK. In 2024, our work is needed more than ever. Find out how you can support the Big Issue today.
Vendor martin Hawes

Recommended for you

View all
Game of Thrones star Emilia Clarke: 'Surviving brain injuries gave me a fire to keep going'
Exclusive

Game of Thrones star Emilia Clarke: 'Surviving brain injuries gave me a fire to keep going'

'We are here and we exist': Inside the neighbourhood offering sanctuary to queer Russians and Ukrainians
Pride

'We are here and we exist': Inside the neighbourhood offering sanctuary to queer Russians and Ukrainians

Actor Liz Carr says it hurts to hear her younger self 'wanted to die'
Liz Carr
Disability rights

Actor Liz Carr says it hurts to hear her younger self 'wanted to die'

Feeling like change in the UK isn't possible? Let these 28 purposeful campaigns prove otherwise
Activism

Feeling like change in the UK isn't possible? Let these 28 purposeful campaigns prove otherwise

Most Popular

Read All
Renters pay their landlords' buy-to-let mortgages, so they should get a share of the profits
Renters: A mortgage lender's window advertising buy-to-let products
1.

Renters pay their landlords' buy-to-let mortgages, so they should get a share of the profits

Exclusive: Disabled people are 'set up to fail' by the DWP in target-driven disability benefits system, whistleblowers reveal
Pound coins on a piece of paper with disability living allowancve
2.

Exclusive: Disabled people are 'set up to fail' by the DWP in target-driven disability benefits system, whistleblowers reveal

Cost of living payment 2024: Where to get help now the scheme is over
next dwp cost of living payment 2023
3.

Cost of living payment 2024: Where to get help now the scheme is over

Strike dates 2023: From train drivers to NHS doctors, here are the dates to know
4.

Strike dates 2023: From train drivers to NHS doctors, here are the dates to know