Income mobility prospects affect individuals’ willingness to pay higher taxes, or give part of their income, to improve the public healthcare and public education systems. In line with the prospects of the upward mobility hypothesis, risk-willing individuals who expect to move far up the socio-economic ladder are less willing to pay compared with individuals who expect no upward transition. Consistent with a social insurance effect, risk-averse individuals who hold modest upward prospects are more willing to pay compared with individuals without upward prospects. These findings are based on more than 19,000 observations from the third round of the Life in Transition Survey.