London Theatre for Students and Young People

Living in London as a young person can be hugely expensive and can often leave you bereft of luxuries such as theatre tickets, particularly when theatres often charge over £50 for even the most restricted seat. However, if you are lucky enough to be under 25, or a student, there are a number of brilliant initiatives aimed at encouraging young people to visit the theatre. Below, we outline these schemes and also give you a couple of handy tips to help you on your way…

Under 25 Schemes

& Juliet cast on stage

It’s important to note that proof of age will be required when purchasing tickets and when picking up tickets from the various box offices.

Donmar Warehouse – YOUNG+FREE

  • The Donmar Warehouse offers thousands of free tickets for 16-25 year olds
  • Sign up on the website to be included in the ballot for all Donmar Warehouse productions
  • Go to www.donmarwarehouse.com/visit/young-free/ for more information
  • Free tickets for 16-25 year olds

National Theatre – 16-25 Tickets

  • The National Theatre offers a discounted rate on certain productions for 16-25 year olds
  • A limited number of 16-25 tickets are available per performance, so book early
  • Go to nationaltheatre.org.uk/16-25-tickets for more information
  • 16-18 year old price is £5, 19-25 year old price is £10

Royal Shakespeare Company – 16-25 Shakespeare Pass 

  • A seasonal ticket that allows you to see shows at a discount
  • Pass must be bought at Stratford-upon-Avon box office or by phone
  • Go to www.rsc.org.uk/whats-on/offers/16-25-shakespeare-pass for more information
  • £20 to see five productions at the RCS’s Stratford-upon-Avon venue in a year

Royal Shakespeare Company – £5 Tickets

  • An exclusive promotional code that allows you to book discount tickets
  • Only applicable for those aged 16-25
  • Enter 1625 into ticket bookings to receive discount
  • Go to www.rsc.org.uk/students/5-pound-tickets for more information
  • £5 tickets to all RSC productions in London and Stratford-upon-Avon, including Matilda the Musical

Barbican Theatre – Young Barbican

  • Discount scheme for those aged 14-25
  • Receive offers for exclusive access to over 50,000 tickets across film, art, music and theatre
  • Go to www.barbican.org.uk/join-support/young-barbican for more information
  • £5, £10 and £15 tickets offered for productions and cinema
  • £5 tickets to new film releases between Monday-Thursday

Regent’s Park Open Air – Breeze

  • Membership available for 18-25’s, £10 one-off joining fee
  • Receive 20% discount at the bar, The Pizza Oven and The Grill at Open Aire Theatre events and previews
  • Emails including exclusive offers and benefits at Regent’s Park
  • Go to openairtheatre.com/breeze for more information
  • Two £10 tickets in price band B during previews

Young Vic Discount

  • Exclusive offer aimed at those under 25 and full-time students
  • Go to www.youngvic.org/visit-us/concessions for more information
  • £10 tickets for all Young Vic productions, subject to availability

Chichester Festival Theatre – Prologue

Mousetrap Theatre Projects – Go Live Theatregoing Club

  • Mousetrap is a theatre education charity aimed at bringing young people into theatre
  • The Go Live programme is a free theatregoing club open to 15-24 year olds
  • Each month there are 2 West End trips with exclusive Q&As with cast and/or creatives after most shows
  • Opportunity to write reviews and blogs for the Mousetrap website
  • Go to www.mousetrap.org.uk/golive for more information
  • 15-18 year olds pay £7 per ticket
  • 19-24 year olds pay £12 per ticket

Returns

For those who are desperate to see a show, a good way of securing a ticket last minute is to queue at the box office for returns. A return is a ticket given back to the box office at last minute, when the audience member can no longer make it. These tickets are often resold at a reduced rate on the day of the performance.

Lotteries

Lotteries are an excellent way of getting amazing seats at a discount price! Check the official website for the show you want to see to find out if they offer a lottery. Not all West End shows offer lotteries, so here are some to look out for:

  • The Book of Mormon – Enter up to a week in advance on their website and be in with a chance of winning two front row seats for £20 each! All you need to do is follow the lottery guidelines and post to facebook or twitter to be in with an extra chance of winning.
  • Matilda – Go to the official website to enter. Enter your details and select your preferred performance dates. Additional entries are gained by sharing details about the lottery on Facebook and Twitter. Winners will be offered a pair of tickets to one of their chosen performances for £25 each.

Day Seats

Day seats have quickly become one of the most popular ways of securing tickets. At 10am on the day of the performance, the box office releases a select amount of seats for you to purchase at a discounted price. These seats are typically front row for between £15-25. Most West End shows have a day-seat policy, and customers can queue from as early as 7am!

It is worth noting that Matilda the Musical offers a limited range of seats specifically for those aged 16-25 at only £5 each.

Handy Tips

  • Visit the London TKTS booth in Leicester Square for reduced price tickets on the day of the performance
  • Book online in advance to take advantage of offers and discounts
  • Stand on the floor of Shakespeare’s Globe to see an amazing show at only £5
  • Sit in restricted view seats, which often only obstruct a tiny part of the stage
  • Get the TodayTix app on your phone, which offers lotteries and discounts on the day of the performance
  • Attend matinees and weekday performances for discounted tickets

Your View

Do you have any tips on ways to get discount tickets in London? Add comments in the box below!