Sport-Related Costs Of The Olympic Games

Sport-Related Costs Of The Olympic Games

Well, the exact cost is difficult to pin down, but hosting an Olympics is a financially risky proposition. From 1968 through 2014, the average Summer Olympic Games had an average sports-related cost of $5.21 billion , while the average Winter Olympics costs $3.11 billion, according to a study by Bent Flyvbjerg, Alexander Budzier, and Allison Stewart for the Saïd Business School.

They looked at the sports-related cost and cost overrun for most Olympic games since 1968. And these figures only include sports-related costs – inflation-adjusted, 2015 USD.

However, the title of the “most expensive Olympic games ever” goes to the Russia’s Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics – $21.9 billion.

Question: Is it worth it? And if so, for whom?

Answer: Countries that host the Olympics do it for the prestige and fame that comes with the athletes and media attention —- and are widely popular and appreciated.

Sport-Related Costs Of The Summer Olympic Games

GamesCountryYearEventsAthletesCost (Billion USD)
RomeItaly19601505338n/a
TokyoJapan196416351520.282
Mexico CityMexico19681725516n/a
MunichGermany197219572341.009
MontrealCanada197619860486.093
MoscowSoviet Union198020351796.331
Los AngelesUSA198422168290.719
SeoulSouth Korea19882378397n/a
BarcelonaSpain199225793569.687
AtlantaUSA1996271103184.143
SydneyAustralia2000300106515.026
AthensGreece2004301106252.942
BeijingChina2008302109426.810
LondonUK20123021056814.957
RioBrazil2016306105004.557
Average23981775.213
Median23783974.791

Sport-Related Costs Of The Winter Olympic Games

GamesCountryYearEventsAthletesCost (Billion USD)
Squaw ValleyUSA196027665n/a
InnsbruckAustria19643410910.022
GrenobleFrance19683511580.888
SapporoJapan19723510060.117
InnsbruckAustria19763711230.118
Lake PlacidUSA19803810720.435
SarajevoYugoslavia1984391272n/a
CalgaryCanada19884614321.109
AlbertvilleFrance19925718011.997
LillehammerNorway19946117372.228
NaganoJapan19986821762.227
Salt Lake CityUSA20027823992.520
TorinoItaly20068425084.366
VancouverCanada20108625662.540
SochiRussia201498278021.890
Average5516523.112
Median4614321.997

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