How Much Do Triathlons Cost to Enter?

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Everybody claims that triathlons are expensive but rarely anybody talk numbers. After spending so many years in the triathlon industry, we thought it’s high time we review the actual cost of triathlons.

 

So, if you’re wondering “how much do triathlons cost to enter”, you’ve come to the right place. From triathlon entrance fee to accommodation, here’s everything you need to know about triathlon cost.

 

How Much Do Triathlon Triathlons Cost to Enter?

Overall, if it’s your first time participating in a triathlon, you can realistically anticipate spending almost seven hundred dollars. This figure covers all the essential triathlon gears and equipment you’d need for the first race. You’d be surprised to know that the second year, rather than being more affordable, is even more expensive with costs totaling up to around SIX THOUSAND DOLLARS! The exorbitant cost is majorly due to some of the one-time purchases such as wetsuit, bike, etc. Once such one-time costs are behind you, you can expect to spend roughly three thousand dollars every year.

 

Further in this triathlon cost guide, you’ll find the breakdown of the above-stated costs along with some tips that can help you save dollars drastically.

 

Triathlon Cost for Your 1st Triathlon Race

Even if it’s your first time racing in a triathlon, you don’t necessarily have to break the bank in the first year. Instead, we’d recommend you utilize that time to learn more about the sport. In addition to this, instead of buying the equipment and gear right away, we strongly advise you to rent them out and test whether they work for you. Once you’re done with the first triathlon and are still interested in the sport, you can think about investing more money.

 

Below we’ve outlined the realistic* as well as budgeted** triathlon costs.

 

*What the majority of triathletes end up paying for new equipment. 

** Includes good quality triathlon equipment from less popular brands or second-hand gears

 

Tri suit 

Realistic: $120

Budgeted: $60

 

Swim cap

Realistic: $5

Budgeted: –

 

Swim goggles 

Realistic: $25

Budgeted: $25

 

Wetsuit 

Realistic: $25 (rented)

Budgeted: $25 (rented)

 

Bike

Realistic: $120 (including rent or repairs)

Budgeted: 0 (borrow)

 

Helmet 

Realistic: $60

Budgeted: $25

 

Race number belt 

Realistic: $15

Budgeted: $1-

 

Bike repair kit 

Realistic: $30

Budgeted: $30

 

Sunglasses + hat + sunscreen 

Realistic: $60

Budgeted: $25

 

Running shoes 

Realistic: $140

Budgeted: $70

 

Nutrition 

Realistic: $50

Budgeted: $25

 

Triathlon entrance fee (sprint)

Realistic: $50

Budgeted: $50

 

Total triathlon cost: 

Realistic: $700

Budgeted: $345

 

Triathlon Cost for Your 2nd Triathlon Race

As shared earlier, your second triathlon is going to cost you the most. By now, you should have a pretty good idea whether you liked the sport or wish to discontinue. In case you wish to proceed in the second year, now you’ll feel more confident in investing in new equipment and gear. The major expenses are related to one-time purchases that you’ll be able to use in the upcoming years. The four leading investments include a bike, triathlon watch, bike trainer, and a set of aero bars. For those who can’t buy altogether, the purchases can be divided into multiple years.

 

Here are the major costs of your second-year triathlon:

 

Aero bars

Realistic: $140

Budgeted: $35

 

Triathlon watch

Realistic: $450

Budgeted: $250

 

Transition bag

Realistic: $120

Budgeted: –

 

Wetsuit

Realistic: $350

Budgeted: $250

 

Bike

Realistic: $2400

Budgeted: $600

 

Bike fit

Realistic: $180

Budgeted: –

 

Running shoes

Realistic: $140

Budgeted: $70

 

Cycling pedals and shoes

Realistic: $230

Budgeted: $80

 

Indoor apps

Realistic: $200

Budgeted: $90

 

Swim lessons

Realistic: $120

Budgeted: –

 

Nutrition 

Realistic: $180

Budgeted: $60

 

Triathlon entrance fee

Realistic: $250 (2 sprint + 2 olympic)

Budgeted: $180 (4 sprint)

 

Accommodation + transport

Realistic: $250 (may vary)

Budgeted: –

 

Bike trainer and accessories 

Realistic: $600

Budgeted: $180

 

Total triathlon cost: 

Realistic: $5610

Budgeted: $1795

 

Triathlon Cost for A Typical Year

Once you’ve invested in a decent bike, the triathlon cost would drastically go down. Nonetheless, you’ll still have to make some expenses in order to maintain the bike or upgrade some core bike parts year after year for optimal performance. The majority of your triathlon cost would be related to entrance fees, accommodation, and transport. In addition to this, the expenses would also be highly dependent on the kind of events you’d be attending and their proximity to your home. If you plan to attend branded races like Ironman, then expect to pay more.

 

Running shoes

Realistic: $140

Budgeted: $70

 

Indoor apps

Realistic: $300 (2 apps)

Budgeted: $90 (only in winter season)

 

Swim lessons

Realistic: $120

Budgeted: –

 

Nutrition 

Realistic: $180

Budgeted: $60

 

Triathlon license

Realistic: $50

Budgeted: –

 

Triathlon entrance fee (Olympic x2)

Realistic: $150

Budgeted: $120

 

Triathlon entrance fee (Half distance)

Realistic: $300

Budgeted: $120

 

Triathlon entrance fee (Full distance)

Realistic: $600

Budgeted: $250

 

Accommodation + transport

Realistic: $700 (may vary)

Budgeted: $240

 

Bike upgrades

Realistic: $350

Budgeted: $120

 

Total triathlon cost: 

Realistic: $2890

Budgeted: $1070

 

Tips to Reduce Triathlon Costs

To help you save dollars on triathlon cost, here are some simple yet fool-proof tips to follow:

 

Buy second-hand equipment

Buying triathlon equipment and gear doesn’t necessarily mean you have to buy fresh. You can benefit from some really nice deals in the second-hand market. Just make sure that everything works decently before making sealing the deal.

 

Register early to save money on the entrance fee

The majority of triathlon races have multiple-tier pricing options. Thus, if you plan to participate in a particular race next year, be sure to register early and save significant dollars on the entrance fee.

 

Register to local triathlons

If you’re short on budget but wish to complete a full-distance triathlon, we recommend you to give local races a try. Unlike branded events like Ironman, local races are lighter on the pocket.

 

Our Final Thoughts

There’s no denying that triathlon is an expensive sport. However, with a well-thought budget plan and cost-cutting tips, you can definitely save a good amount of money on triathlon costs. We hope this post helps you to understand the real cost of participating in a triathlon.

 

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