‘The Bachelor’: Do ‘Bachelor’ Contestants Quit Their Jobs?

It’s not cheap to be a Bachelor contestant. While a Bachelor or Bachelorette usually makes six figures for their time on the ABC show, contestants don’t make a dime to look for love.

On top of that, there are plenty of expenses involved in getting picture-perfect in order to impress your new potential mate.

Former Bachelor contestants report spending thousands of dollars on everything from new clothes and waxing to dermaplaning, facials, hair and nail treatments, and body care before the first rose ceremony. Contestants also provide their own hair, makeup, and wardrobe, making the participants’ weeks at the Bachelor mansion all the more costly.

So how do Bachelor contestants afford all this? And what happens to their jobs when they’re looking for love on ABC? Here’s the inside scoop on what happens to a contestant’s job when they decide to go on the show.

Kaitlyn Bristowe
Kaitlyn Bristowe | Matt Petit/ABC via Getty Images

Many contestants quit their jobs for the show

Many more Bachelors, Bachelorettes, and even Bachelor contestants quit their jobs for the show than you might think.

According to E! News, Season 10 contestant Amber Alchalabi took a 22-day leave from her job as a fourth-grade schoolteacher in Sugar Land, Texas, before being eliminated in Week 6. Her supervisor was actually disciplined for allowing her to take leave for the show. Another teacher, Lauren Himle, quit her job as a kindergarten teacher to appear on Ben Higgins’ season.

Olivia Caridi quit her job as a news anchor to compete on The Bachelor Season 20. According to Insider, she said it wasn’t permanent. “I did not give up my career,” she said. “I am confident that I will get another job in broadcast news to continue my career in the television news industry.”

Ali Fedotowsky originally left Jave Pavelka’s season of The Bachelor to preserve her job at Facebook, but she ultimately agreed to leave the job to become the Bachelorette.

It’s sometimes hard to get back to reality

Of course, most Bachelor contestants will go home without a fiancé or fiancée in tow. After taking a shot at love, some of them have a hard time going back to the daily grind.

Season 11 Bachelorette contestant (and villain) JJ Lane, a former investment banker, told MarketWatch that it was difficult to find a job in corporate finance again after his appearance on the show. In fact, he said reality TV notoriety made potential employers look at him with suspicion.

“I didn’t understand the magnitude of the show and how hard it is to get a real job right after,” Lane said. “Everyone knows who you are and employers see it as a distraction.”

Some contestants find their way into new careers

Of course, even if it’s difficult to go back to your old life after appearing on The Bachelor, many former contestants find lucrative ways to capitalize on their reality TV fame. Some, like former Bachelorette and attorney Rachel Lindsay, use their time on the show as a catalyst for new careers in TV hosting, public speaking, and promotional appearances.

Others build on their notoriety to become social media influencers and brand promoters. Kaitlyn Bristowe told The Cut that she was inundated with offers for brand partnerships and promotions on Instagram and other social media platforms after her time on The Bachelor ended.

Bristowe said she was thrilled to accept the offers, explaining: “Overnight you have this huge following, so all these brands are like, ‘Here, do you want to work with us?’…For somebody who has worked a regular job before, you’re like, ‘Oh my gosh, you’re going to pay me to do that? Glorious.”

Meanwhile, other contestants go on dating or couple’s therapy shows to draw in the audience that first watched them. Sean Lowe admitted that he and his wife Catherine Lowe, the winner of his season of The Bachelor, agreed to appear on Marriage Boot Camp purely to boost their bank account.