In Kernel-based Learning the targeted phenomenon is summarized by a set of explanatory examples derived from the training set. When the model size grows with the complexity of the task, such approaches are so computationally demanding that the adoption of comprehensive models is not always viable.In this paper, a general framework aimed at minimizing this problem is proposed: multiple classifiers are stratified and dynamically invoked according to increasing levels of complexity corresponding to incrementally more expressive representation spaces.Computationally expensive inferences are thus adopted only when the classification at lower levels is too uncertain over an individual instance. The application of complex functions is thus avoided where possible, with a significant reduction of the overall costs. The proposed strategy has been integrated within two well-known algorithms: Support Vector Machines and Passive-Aggressive Online classifier.A significant cost reduction (up to 90%), with a negligible performance drop, is observed against two Natural Language Processing tasks, i.e. Question Classification and Sentiment Analysis in Twitter.