Foreign markets can be risky but highly profitable. New York Magazine reported that Vanity Fair Italia was one of the most profitable magazines on Condé Nast stable of publications. Aside from revenues generated from the ad pages, the magazines are sold mostly from newsstands at full price (€4-€5).
In the US the revenues for publishers are generated primarily from ad pages where rates are determined by circulation numbers. So to beef up the circulation numbers, most magazines offer cheap annual subscriptions ($12-$19/year) to the readers.