Trevi Fountain Coins

The Fountain that Earns Over 28 Times the US Minimum Wage

Toss a coin into a fountain and make a wish. There’s something particularly romantic about doing so at the Trevi Fountain in Rome.

The legend goes; throwing one coin means a return to Rome, a second coin leads to a new romance, and a third coin leads to marriage.

So how many people are getting married?

The totals

A lot of visitors to Rome are clearly buying into the story, with an Italian charity, Caritas, a Catholic non-profit that receives all coins, confirming that nearly $1.5 million dollars in change was thrown into the fountain during 2016.

Trevi Fountain earnings USD EUR (0.89 USD)
Amount per year $1,500,000.00 €1,335,000.00
Amount per month $125,000.00 €111,250.00
Amount per day $4,109.59 €3,657.53
Amount per hour $68.49 €60.96
Amount per min $1.14 €1.02

Full table

The Trevi Fountain earns $68.49 per hour (over a 24 hour period). Assuming a standard 8 hour work day (vs. 24 hours) that’s $204.48 per hour, 28 times higher than the minimum wage in the US of $7.25 per hour. Per day the fountain receives just over $4,109 in coins.

Now let’s assume all the coins thrown into the fountain are Euros, at an exchange rate of 0.89 EUR to 1 USD (correct May 15th 2019) thats €60.96 per hour, or €3,657.53 per day.

The coins

The euro coin series comprises eight different denominations: 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 and 50 cent, €1 and €2.

That means, the minimum number of coins thrown into the fountain per day is 1832 (x1828 2 Euro coins, x1 1 Euro coin, x1 50 cent coin, x1 2 cent coin, and x1 1 cent coin).

Though I very much doubt the majority of people are throwing in 2 Euro coins. I would not be surprised if the average denomination was less than 10 cents. Assuming all the coins were 10 cents, that’s x36,575 10 cent coins (plus x1 2 cent coin, and x1 1 cent coin).

The weight

Continuing this trail of thought, with each 10 cent coin weighing in at 4.1 grams, the daily weight of coins is just under 150kg. Per year that’s 54735kg or nearly 55 tonnes — about half the weight of a Blue Whale.

tl;dr

People throw $1,500,000 worth of coins into the Trevi Fountain every year. 

Footnotes

  1. Data sources + data used in this post.
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