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How to get cheap theatre tickets in London

Tips on how to grab bargain cheap theatre lottery tickets and the guide on theatre lottery tickets uk

Where can I buy cheap theatre tickets in London last minute?

This is the best way to get cheap theatre tickets in Londons West End? We normally attend the theatre a few times a month and always try to find some great bargains. London tickets can be expensive and not knowing where to buy tickets can be a pain. Here are the 16 best ways to get Cheap theatre tickets in London. How to purchase cheap online upfront tickets and last-minute ticket booth tickets is a doddle if you know how.

Theatre lottery tickets uk where to find them! Find out here how to get Theatre lottery tickets uk and in this post all the info on last minute theatre tickets, same day theatre tickets, half price musical tickets and also free london tickets with out being ripped off.

Make sure you buy your London theatre tickets from reputable retailers at a cheap price. So if you would like to know the top tips to buying West End tickets and want to see some fantastic musical shows. Read this guide and the low down on how to get discounted theatre tickets in London.

How to get cheap theatre tickets in London

1. Purchase from the Official London Theatre TKTS booth.

Where can I buy last minute theatre tickets in London? The best place to buy last minute tickets cheap in London is The Official London Theatre booth located in Leicester Square. This is the only official non-profit making ticket booth in London that works alongside the theatres. So if you are in London on the day this is perfect, You can hop off of the underground and walk to Leicester Square and purchase your tickets directly from the booth with help and advise.

West End Theatres open up their tickets to the Leicester square ticket booth directly for you to purchase last-minute. You can view what is available on the day online but you have to purchase directly from the booth in person.

If you want to purchase same day tickets the TKTS booth is open 7 days a week. Tickets can also be purchased up to 3 days before a show directly at the Leicester square booth.

Be prepared to queue especially on a weekend as its popular. If all windows are open the queue can go pretty quick and the staff are really informative and helpful if you can’t quite decide. It is also a good idea to have a few options of what you would like to see as you may get to the window and your choice of show could be gone.

Top Tip, Try to look at what shows are finishing first or which one has the biggest discount and go for those.

Steer clear of smaller unofficial booths around London as they tend to be overpriced and often add booking fee. I have personally been round to many asking for the same tickets to find they fluctuate and are dearer that direct from the box office’s.

TKTS booth Leicester Square How to get cheap theatre tickets in London

2. How to purchase tickets from the Official London theatre online

Official London Theatre also do discounts online throughout the year including a New Year Sale. This is a great opportunity to book in advance when tickets are heavily discounted. Be sure to check for special discounts such as the new year ticket sale.

The Official London theatre are the official online retailer for london theatre shows and really is the only way to get last minute theatre tickets cheap. Official London theatre receive their own allocation of tickets often cheaper than direct from the box office.

3. Kids go free in August with The Official London theatre.

Official London theatre have been running Kids go free week every August for the past 20 years. During kids week one child under 16 goes free with every full paying adult. Look out for this online as the tickets usually go on sale around June in preparation for August.
If you have more children you can buy an extra two children’s tickets at half price. West End theatres often put on extra midweek matinee’s to cater for this. See the Official London Theatres website for more details.

4. Official London Theatre New Year sale theatre ticket sale.

The Official London theatre New Year sale of theatre tickets runs every year from the first of January through to the beginning of February. Expect to find heavily discounted tickets for big shows at this quieter time of year. Purchase ticket during the New year online direct from Official London theatre.

TKTS ticket booth Leicester Square London cheap theatre tickets on day

How can I get cheap tickets at the box office in person for same day theatre tickets?

5. Walk in to the Box office

Certain theatres offer discounts directly from the box office. It is worth walking in to the theatre of the show of your choice when you are in the West-End and checking first at the box office. Box offices sometimes have a few tickets that they can discount daily so do check.
Alternatively if you approach the box office shortly before a show starts some theatres will do a discount for a last-minute seat.

6. Cheap day seat theatre tickets

Some theatres do day seats which are available in person on the morning of the show. Tickets for day seats are limited and you may have to queue, but you could bag yourself a ticket as cheap as £10. Not all London West -End theatres do day tickets so do check their website first. Tickets are normally available at 10am at the box office. Be aware that some people queue very early in the morning for popular theatre shows.

7. Grab Standing only tickets

You can get some great standing only tickets in London for some big  theatre shows such as the Lion King for just £25! So provided you don’t mind standing through a  theatre show for around two hours you could get a great view of the stage for a fraction of the price.

8. Upgrade your theatre ticket! Can I upgrade my ticket?

Can I upgrade my ticket? Yes you can if there is available space but you may have to pay. Yes if you approach the box-office before the show you may be able yo upgrade your theatre seat to a better one if it is available.

If you have already purchased your tickets you may be able to get your seat upgraded last-minute. Ask at the box office on arrival to the theatre and show them your tickets. We have offered to pay for an upgraded seat before and received a free upgrade closer to the stage.

Not all box offices do discounts on the door but it is always worth asking.

Box office lights How to get cheap theatre tickets in London

9. But direct! What is the best online box office for London theatre tickets?

Direct purchase from the theatre’s box office online for the best deals.

Many theatres operate a no booking fee so it can be cheaper to book direct with the theatre. Box offices can also offer many different way to obtain tickets from group bookings and lottery wins. It is always a good idea to check the shows official box office first to see if they are offering any deals.

Ticket prices fluctuate all year round so check back often as ticket price’s often go up and down depending on demand. If you are flexible with dates you can catch some great midweek bargains. Monday to Thursday theatre seats are often a lot cheaper than weekend tickets.

Suit your budget and research the theatre, theatres offer all different prices for different seats. If you take a look at the theatre seat arrangement and capacity you can pretty much work out the best place to sit. In a small theatre a cheaper seat near the back may have a great view, where as in larger theatres it may pay to sit closer to the front.

On other online sites you may pay more for theatre tickets even if it says they are discounted there is normally a booking fee added.

10. Catch cheap seat when a show opens! How do I Book a preview at a London theatre?

New musicals coming to the West End often have previews before the show opens. These are usually a week before the show starts. You can book these direct with the theatre box office you are going to. Watch out for new musicals advertised as coming to the West End as the previews sell out before the show officially opens. These first few days are often reduced by as much as £10 or £20. You will be able to grab some great seats at reduced prices and get to see it first!

11. Group bookings! How do I book a group booking for a top London Musical?

Many theatres have group bookings which drastically reduce the price for the number of tickets you purchase. By booking a large group of tickets for you and your friends you can get premium seats at almost half price.You normally have to purchase at least 10 theatre tickets for a discount. You can sometimes get a further discount if you book more. Contact the box office direct to find out who deals with their bookings. You will get a booking reference to enable you collect money for all of your tickets before paying. Everyone gets a good deal! There are also lots of other websites that do group booking discounts. Just make sure you know the original price of the ticket to get a good deal.

School of Rock New London Theatre How to get cheap theatre tickets in London

12. Win the theatre lottery and get half price theatre tickets

Another way to get cheap theatre tickets in London is the theatre Lottery. Quite a few musical theatres operate a lottery system where you can enter your email for a show and win your chance to purchase a ticket for as little as £10. There are many variations on this, some offer front row seats, some last-minute rush seats and some a lottery every performance. Check each individual website for information on how to get last-minute tickets for often sold out shows. Theatre Lottery tickets are my favourite way to grab last minute theatre shows on a budget. It is particularly good if you are not worried about what you see.

Take a look at my show by show guide for theatre lottery tickets here!

13. Use the Today Tix App

Alternatively you can sign up to Todays Tix which is a handy app and website showcasing all of the latest discounts, lottery tickets and rush tickets available. Todays Tix shows you all of the latest deals from all of the top shows. It even has theatre lottery of their own.

The playhouse theatre London How to get cheap theatre tickets in London

14. Bargain ticket sites, Grab a free show!

My Box office is a handy website that emails you with last-minute tickets. Get some cheap last-minute or free shows by signing up to My Box Office.

Shows may be brand new or not advertised or maybe have quite a few seats still available. Many venues have special performances, previews or press nights and want to ensure houses are as full as possible. For this reason, many of My Box Office discreet ticket offers will be at very short notice sometimes on the day of the event.

The Vaudeville theatre How to get cheap theatre tickets in London

15. Reduced rates and events for students

The national theatre live do an Entry pass for students. Joining Entry Pass which is a free membership offers access to £7.50 tickets, exclusive workshops, events and discounts across the National Theatre.

If you are aged between 15 and 29 you can also sign up with mousetrap.org.uk.
Mouse trap organises events each month with last-minute offers and freebies. You could get tickets as cheap as £10!

Theatre royal Drury Lane How to get cheap theatre tickets in London

16. Star Society of Ticket Agents and Retailers

If you are unsure who to book with Star Society of Ticket Agents and Retailers can give you peace of mind. Check out  Star Society for clear advise on purchasing from reputable retailers.

Thank you for reading How to get cheap theatre tickets in London. I hope I have given you an insight into buying tickets for theatres online, at the box office or getting last-minute theatre tickets for your favourite show. Your only decision now is which theatre performance will you see first?

D x

All opinions are my own and I have not been compensated in any way.

How to get cheap theatre tickets in London on the same day The ultimate guide to buying theatre tickets in Londons Westend. How to bag the best and cheapest Theatre tickets in London and watch in the best A band seat for great shows


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  1. This is such a helpful post Donna. I didn’t know there were so many options for discounted London theatre tickets and it’s right up my street because I do love a bargain!

  2. What a fantastic post – it’ll be really really helpful for lots of people. I’ve always been wary of those unofficial booths! But it’s great to know there are many other ways to get hold of cheaper tickets. Thanks for sharing with #CulturedKids

  3. Thanks for sharing this informational blog. I am amazed to see that there are many websites that offer huge discounts and offers on theatre tickets in London. My friend had visited me last week and asked to book tickets for a Shakespeare’s play. I spent 2 hours buy on various site but nothing worked. At last, my husband somehow managed to book two half-priced tickets for me and my friend through Leicester Square Box Office. Thank God. Now, I will keep in mind all these names for next time last minute theatre bookings.

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