Transaction Fees


Substrate provides the transaction_payment pallet for calculating and collecting fees for executing transactions. Fees are broken down into several components:

  • Base fee - A fixed fee applied to each transaction. A parameter in the transaction_payment pallet.
  • Length fee - A fee proportional to the transaction's length in bytes. The proportionality constant is a parameter in the transaction_payment pallet.
  • Weight fee - A fee calculated from the transaction's weight. Weights are intended to capture the actual resources consumed by the transaction. Learn more in the recipe on weights. It doesn't need to be linear, although it often is. The same conversion function is applied across all transactions from all pallets in the runtime.
  • Fee Multiplier - A multiplier for the computed fee, that can change as the chain progresses. This topic is not (yet) covered further in the recipes.
total_fee = base_fee + transaction_length * length_fee + weight_to_fee(total_weight)

Setting the Constants

Each of the parameters described above is set in the transaction_payment pallet's configuration trait. For example, the super-runtime sets these parameters as follows.

src: runtimes/super-runtime/src/

parameter_types! {
    pub const TransactionBaseFee: u128 = 0;
    pub const TransactionByteFee: u128 = 1;

impl transaction_payment::Trait for Runtime {
    type Currency = balances::Module<Runtime>;
    type OnTransactionPayment = ();
    type TransactionBaseFee = TransactionBaseFee;
    type TransactionByteFee = TransactionByteFee;
    type WeightToFee = ConvertInto;
    type FeeMultiplierUpdate = ();

Converting Weight To Fees

In many cases converting weight to fees in a one-to-one fashion, as shown above, will suffice and can be accomplished with ConvertInto. This approach is also taken in the node template. It is also possible to provide a type that makes a more complex calculation. Any type that implements Convert<Weight, Balance> will suffice.

This example uses a quadratic conversion and supports custom coefficients.

src: runtimes/weight-fee-runtime/src/

pub struct QuadraticWeightToFee<C0, C1, C2>(C0, C1, C2);

impl<C0, C1, C2> Convert<Weight, Balance> for QuadraticWeightToFee<C0, C1, C2>
	where C0: Get<Balance>, C1: Get<Balance>, C2: Get<Balance> {

	fn convert(w: Weight) -> Balance {
		let c0 = C0::get();
		let c1 = C1::get();
		let c2 = C2::get();
		let w = Balance::from(w);

		// TODO use safe math
		c0 + c1 * w + c2 * w * w

Collecting Fees

Having calculated the amount of fees due, runtime authors must decide which asset the fees should be paid in. A common choice is the use the Ballances pallet, but any type that implements the Currency trait can be used. The weight-fee-runtime demonstrates how to use an asset provided by the Generic Asset pallet.

src: runtimes/weight-fee-runtime/src/

impl transaction_payment::Trait for Runtime {

	// A generic asset whose ID is stored in the generic_asset pallet's runtime storage
	type Currency = SpendingAssetCurrency<Self>;

	// --snip--