CFA Exam Fees in 2019 & 2020

CFA exam / Registration / Fees

CFA Exam Fees 2019 - Don't overpay!

CFA Exam Cost

The basic CFA exam cost is: exam fee (USD 650 early birds, USD 950 standard, USD 1380 late-comers) paid upon registration for each exam + USD 450 of enrollment fee (paid once). In the best case scenario, total CFA exam cost is USD 2400 but may rise significantly owing to other CFA costs.

CFA exam fees include:

  • one-time program enrollment fee (before your first CFA level 1 exam; USD 450),
  • exam registration fee (all levels; the cost depends on when you register: see below for details),
  • cost of print version of the curriculum (only if you opt in; USD 150 plus any fees associated with shipping).

CFA Exam Registration Fees for December 2019 (level 1)




Early registration

USD 650

until 27 March 2019

Standard registration

USD 950

until 14 August 2019

Late registration

USD 1,380

until 11 September 2019

IMPORTANT! The deadlines end at 11:59 p.m. ET.

CFA Exam Registration Fees for June 2020 (all exam levels)




Early registration

USD 700

until 2 October 2019

Standard registration

USD 1,000

until 12 February 2020

Late registration

USD 1,450

until 11 March 2020

IMPORTANT! The deadlines end at 11:59 p.m. ET.

You can reduce your CFA exam cost: see if you are eligible for a CFA scholarship

Don’t Forget Other CFA Exam Costs

CFA exam enrollment and registration fees are the direct CFA cost. But there are also some indirect costs which may include:

  • time,
  • cost of study materials,
  • travel costs (exam day),
  • accommodation costs (exam day),
  • lost opportunities.

Time is a valuable currency – there’s no denying it. That’s why you want to be smart and responsible about your study time. One of the time-related truths about the CFA exam is that: the later you start your CFA exam prep, the lower your chance to pass gets!

There’s no need to put it off. Really. Start your CFA exam prep today by creating a free CFA study plan and:

  • manage your study time effectively,
  • see your chance to pass grow as you progress,
  • unlock all the study tools and review apps inside your study plan.

Our study planner may be used with any kind of study resources because we know that CFA candidates like to use different study aids when preparing for their exam. In the market, you’ll find a whole spectrum of study materials ranging in prices and quality. We go for easy solutions great both for studying and for revision: (1) bite-sized videos, (2) exam-type questions you can generate into tests varying in length and difficulty, (3) formulas you can view inside our special app, (4) abridged L1 topic e-books.

Once again: the sooner you start to prepare for your exam, the better results you can expect. That’s what you want – because you don’t want to fail your exam and lose all the time, money, and energy you put into your preparation.

AND REMEMBER: Each time you fail an exam, you lose not only your time and the money you paid for the exam but also an opportunity for a promotion and thus better salary. Of course, each retake means new costs, including another exam fee plus another travel and accommodation costs on the exam day.

Total CFA Exam Cost in 3 Scenarios

Total CFA exam cost ranges depending on both direct and indirect costs you’ll have to bear. The minimal CFA exam cost is USD 2400 – it’s based on exam registration costs only and assumes you pass all your 3 exams at the first attempt and always pay the early registration fee.

Best Case Scenario Standard Case Scenario Worst Case Scenario
CFA Program Enrollment Fee USD 450 USD 450 USD 450
CFA Exam Registration Fee USD 650 USD 950 USD 1380
no. of your exam retakes 0 2 4
Total CFA Exam Registration Fees
(icluding all exam levels & retakes)
USD 1950 USD 4750 USD 9660

  • Best Case Scenario: no exam retakes; each exam registration before the early fee deadline.
  • USD 2400 is the minimum total cost of passing all CFA exam levels. It includes the program enrollment fee, 3 early exam registration fees, and allows for no retakes. Guess, it doesn’t happen that often…

  • Standard Case Scenario: 2 exam retakes; each exam registration before the standard fee deadline.
  • Standard total cost of passing all levels of your CFA exam are somewhere around USD 5200. In our calculations, we assumed 2 retakes and the standard registration fee for all exams taken. This seems to be the most common scenario among CFA candidates. Of course, to economize a bit here, you can still count in 2 retakes but always register at an early bird fee and pay USD 3250 total under this standard case scenario.

  • Worst Case Scenario: 4 exam retakes; each exam registration before the late fee deadline.
  • This total cost of passing your whole CFA exam is huge but it’s here to draw your attention to a couple of things:

  1. First of all, don’t overpay! Register for your exams early enough not to pay the late registration fee. If for this scenario (assuming as many as 4 retakes altogether) you always pay the standard registration fee – your whole CFA exam will cost you total of USD 7100 instead of USD 10110 (and with early registration, you will pay even less!).
  2. Secondly, you need to trade off your costs against your benefits. Think how many times you can afford to retake your exams for the whole undertaking to be still beneficial to you.
  3. Last but not least, take you exams seriously! Don’t ever allow underachievement but always aim at the best CFA exam prep you can have. This way, you won’t need too many retakes :

It All Starts With Your CFA Study Plan


CONTROL your CFA calendar using WEEKLY study schedules

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