How Much Does It Cost to Take the ACT? A Comprehensive Guide to ACT Exam Fees: Exploring the Expenses of the ACT

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Are you gearing up to take the ACT and wonder about its cost? It’s no secret that standard exam fees can add significantly to college admission expenses. This in-depth guide is here to break down all aspects of ACT costs, including optional services and strategies for potential savings.

Prepare yourself for a valuable journey through everything you need know about managing your budget while striving for academic excellence.

Key Takeaways

  • ACT test options and prices range from $55 to $91, depending on whether or not you choose to take the writing section.
  • Additional fees may apply for late registration ($35), standby testing ($55), testing changes ($35 per change), and international students taking the exam (vary based on location).
  • Sending ACT scores to colleges costs $13 per recipient, and ordering additional score reports after registration is $18 per report.
  • Strategies to reduce exam spendings include taking the test early, registering early, taking advantage of free score reports, and applying for a fee waiver if eligible.

Current ACT Fees and Services

The ACT offers different test options and prices, including an optional writing test for an additional fee. Additional fees may apply for late registration, standby testing, testing changes, and international students taking the exam.

ACT Test Options and Prices

Exploring the ACT test options and their corresponding prices is essential for cost-conscious students and parents. Here’s a detailed breakdown:

ACT Test Options Price
ACT without Writing $68
ACT with Writing $91
Additional Score Reports (per report) $18
Registration for ACT with Writing (includes all sections of the exam) $70
ACT with Writing (additional fee on top of regular test fee) $25
ACT Regular Test Fee $63
ACT Test Fee $55

These prices reflect the standard costs for domestic U.S. students. International students may encounter different fees, and some students may be eligible for fee waivers. This table provides a comprehensive snapshot of the cost associated with taking the ACT test.

Additional Fees (Late Registration, Standby Testing, Testing Changes, International Students)

Late Registration: If you miss the regular registration deadline, there is a late registration option available. However, it does come with an additional fee of $35 on top of the regular test fee.

Standby Testing: Standby testing is an option for those who missed the late registration as well. It allows you to try and take the test on a standby basis at a test center. However, this option also comes with an additional fee of $55.

Testing Changes: If you need to make changes to your ACT exam date or location after registering, there is a change fee of $35 per change. Keep in mind that making changes may also affect other aspects such as receiving score reports or refund policies.

International Students: International students have slightly different fees when taking the ACT exam. The cost for international students varies based on location and services requested. Additionally, international students may be eligible for fee waivers depending on their circumstances.

It’s important to consider these additional fees if you’re planning to take the ACT exam. Being aware of these costs can help you budget accordingly and make informed decisions about your testing options.

How Much Does it Cost to Take the ACT?

The cost of taking the ACT varies depending on whether you choose to take the test with or without the optional writing section.

ACT Without Writing Cost

The cost of taking the ACT without the writing section is $68. This fee includes reports for the student, their high school, and up to four colleges. It’s important to note that this price is for the 2022 test year and may be subject to change in future years.

By choosing to take the ACT without writing, students can save some money while still showcasing their academic skills in English language, mathematics, reading, and scientific reasoning.

ACT With Writing Cost

The cost of taking the ACT with the optional writing section is $91. This price includes the English, Math, Reading, and Science sections of the exam. Choosing to take the ACT with Writing incurs an additional fee of $25 on top of the regular test fee.

It’s important to keep in mind that this cost may vary depending on factors such as location and international student status. To find out more about specific fees and pricing for the ACT exam, it’s recommended to explore related search queries or contact ACT directly for further assistance.

How to Choose Writing or Without Writing

To choose whether to take the ACT with or without the writing section, you should consider your college application requirements and personal goals. If the colleges you’re applying to require or recommend the writing section, then it’s essential to take it.

Keep in mind that choosing to include the writing section will increase your total exam cost by $23. On the other hand, if none of your target colleges require or recommend the writing section, you may opt for taking the ACT without it.

This decision will save you $23 and still provide scores in English, Math, Reading, and Science sections which most colleges rely on heavily for admission decisions. Ultimately, deciding whether to take the writing section depends on understanding your college application requirements and considering any potential financial implications.

Additional ACT Testing Costs

The additional costs associated with taking the ACT include fees for student reports, test option changes, sending ACT scores, and retaking the exam.

Student Report Cost

Ordering student report copies after registration for the ACT incurs an additional cost of $18 per report. This fee allows students to obtain extra copies of their test scores to send to colleges or scholarship programs.

It’s important for cost-conscious buyers to be aware of this expense when budgeting for the ACT exam. Additionally, it’s worth noting that the cost of ordering student reports is separate from the initial registration fee and any fees associated with taking the writing section of the test.

Test Option Change

To change your test option on the ACT, there is a fee of $18. This fee applies if you want to switch from taking the ACT without writing to taking it with writing, or vice versa. It’s important to keep this in mind when considering whether or not you want to include the optional writing section.

Make sure you carefully consider your decision before registering for the exam, as changing your test option later will come at an additional cost.

How Much is it to Send ACT Scores?

Sending ACT scores to colleges and universities is an important step in the college application process. The cost to send ACT scores is $13 for each recipient. This fee covers the electronic delivery of your official score report directly to the institution(s) of your choice.

It’s essential to carefully select which schools you want your scores sent to, as sending them later can incur additional fees. Keep in mind that this fee is separate from the registration cost for taking the ACT exam itself.

By planning ahead and considering where you want your scores sent, you can make sure to allocate funds accordingly and avoid any unnecessary expenses when it comes time to send your ACT scores.

What is an ACT Fee Waiver

An ACT fee waiver is a program that offers financial assistance to eligible students who are unable to afford the cost of taking the ACT exam. This waiver covers the registration fee for the test as well as additional services, such as sending score reports to colleges.

To qualify for an ACT fee waiver, students must meet certain criteria based on their family income and enrollment in government assistance programs. By offering fee waivers, the ACT aims to ensure that all students have equal access to college admissions testing, regardless of their financial circumstances.

How Much Does it Cost to Retake the ACT?

Retaking the ACT can be expensive, but it’s important to strive for your best score if you’re not satisfied with your initial results. The cost to retake the ACT without the writing section is $68, which includes reports for yourself, your high school, and up to four colleges.

If you opt to take the ACT with the writing section, the price increases to $91. Keep in mind that ordering additional score reports after registration will cost you $18 per report.

Remember, international students may have different fees and could potentially qualify for fee waivers.

Strategies to Reduce Exam Spendings

To reduce exam spendings, consider taking the test early, registering early, taking advantage of free score reports, and applying for a fee waiver if eligible.

Take the Test Early

To save money on ACT exam fees, one strategy is to take the test early. By registering for an earlier test date, you can avoid any late registration fees that may be imposed. Additionally, by giving yourself ample time to prepare and study before the test, you increase your chances of performing well and potentially eliminating the need for retaking the exam, which would incur additional costs.

Taking the test early not only saves you money but also helps reduce stress and gives you more flexibility in case unforeseen circumstances arise. So be proactive and plan ahead by scheduling your ACT exam as soon as possible.

Register Early

Registering early for the ACT can save you money and ensure your spot on your preferred test date. By registering in advance, you avoid any late registration fees that may apply if you wait too long.

Additionally, registering early gives you more time to prepare and plan for the exam. Remember, the regular test fee for the ACT is $63, so it’s wise to register as soon as possible to secure your spot without any additional costs.

Take Advantage of Free Score Reports

Save money on your ACT exam expenses by taking advantage of free score reports. When you register for the ACT, you have the option to send your scores to up to four colleges or universities for free.

This means that you can avoid additional fees later on if you know which schools you are interested in applying to. By selecting these schools during registration, you can ensure that your scores are automatically sent to them at no extra cost.

Planning ahead and using this opportunity can help you keep your overall testing expenses down.

Apply for a Fee Waiver If You’re Eligible

If you are eligible, it is recommended to apply for a fee waiver for the ACT exam. The fee waiver program aims to assist students who may not have the financial means to cover the costs associated with taking the test.

By applying for a fee waiver, you can potentially save money and reduce your exam spendings. Eligibility requirements vary, but typically include factors such as family income and participation in government assistance programs.

Taking advantage of this opportunity can help make the ACT more accessible and affordable for cost-conscious buyers like yourself.


In conclusion, understanding the costs associated with taking the ACT is crucial for students and their families. With registration fees ranging from $55 to $91 depending on whether or not you choose to take the writing section, it’s important to plan ahead and budget accordingly.

By being aware of additional expenses such as score reports and test option changes, students can make informed decisions that help reduce exam spendings.


1. What is the cost of taking the ACT standardized test in the United States?

The ACT registration costs vary, and a detailed guide can provide comprehensive information about all ACT fees and pricing associated with this academic skill areas exam.

2. Are there additional charges for Non-US students to take the ACT?

Yes, Non-US students might face other expenses associated with the ACT because they are taking this standardized test outside of the United States.

3. When should I pay my ACT examination fees?

You should pay your ACT examination fees during your registration process for specific exam dates provided by a nonprofit organization administering it.

4. Does every expense associated with the ACT go to exam preparation?

No, not all expenses tied to an ACT test go towards exam prep; some part of it covers mandatory costs like standard à la carte add-ons and administrative overheads rounded up as part of total registration fees.

5. Can you tell me more about what goes into calculation of these various Fees?

ACT puts forth detailed information on its official website that breaks down these different aspects such as Standardized tests, Academic Skills Areas etc giving transparency around understanding how much does it cost to take up an (the) Act.

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