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Guide to buying London theatre tickets

Guide to buying London theatre tickets

Your last-minute gift givers’ guide to London theatre

Robin Johnson

By Robin Johnson First Published 20 December 2017, Last Updated 25 February 2019

Buying Christmas gifts can sometimes be as easy as (mince) pie, with the perfect presents jumping out at you from the shelves. Other times, it can be a nightmare. We’ve all been there; you’re struggling for ideas, there’s less than a week to go – and the prospect of “socks for everyone!” is on the cards.

Never fear, theatre gift-giver, we’ve got your back. With our last-minute gift givers’ guide to London theatre, you’re sure to find the perfect present solution for everybody. And with plenty of shows adding extra seasonal performances to their schedules, there’s never a better time of the year to sample the festive fun of theatre.

So put those socks away (well, until birthdays come around, at least!), and check out our guide below.

“I’m looking for…

“… a last-minute London theatre trip.”

‘Tis the season for great theatre discounts – and you’ll be amazed what you can find. A great spur-of-the-moment gift, why not propose a last-minute, cheaper-than-normal theatre trip, courtesy of the TKTS booth?

At the booth this Christmas, you’ll be able to enjoy a whole host of on-the-day tickets – just be sure to check out our seasonal opening hours. You can also buy for up to two days in advance – so take note, Christmas Eve shoppers, as you’ll be able to grab some Boxing Day performance bargains!

TKTS booth, Leicester SquareWhile there are no guarantees as to what show you’ll see, you can be sure of great recommendations and advice from the cheery staff, as well as even greater value London theatre tickets.

“… Boxing Day brilliance.”

While the idea of spending Boxing Day recovering on the sofa sounds great, it’s not always the best way to keep everybody in the family entertained, especially after the excitement of the day before. That’s where a London show can come in.

London's TheatrelandLondon’s Theatreland

So don’t hang about at home – get yourself down to the West End. In Theatreland-based venues alone, you can enjoy evening performances (from 7pm onwards – times vary by show) from the likes of musicals:

… as well as spectacles like La Soiréecomedies including The Play That Goes Wrong and  The Comedy About A Bank Robbery, and plays including Glengarry Glen Ross, The Mousetrap and Oslo.

Early riser? Pantomime Dick Whittington and world-class musical Wicked both also have matinee shows at 2.30pm.

Further afield, there are also plenty of great other shows also playing on Boxing Day; check them out using the date search feature on our London shows page.

“… a bargain treat to kickstart 2018.”

If there’s a particular production your loved one has always wanted to see, then January 2018 is the time to see it. Official London Theatre’s New Year Sale is the perfect way to get hold of a fantastic value Christmas gift.

Official London Theatre's New Year Sale

We’ve thousands of theatre tickets, reduced to just £10, £20, £30 and £40, for over 40 of London’s biggest shows for performances from 1 January until 9 February 2018. What’s more, there are absolutely no fees to pay on New Year Sale tickets (no booking fees nor postage) – so the price you see is the price you pay.

Not bad, if we do say so ourselves!

“… a way to let them choose for themselves.”

Sometimes it’s impossible to know what somebody would want to see – or, indeed, when they’ll actually be able to see it!

Enter Theatre Tokens, the nationwide theatre gift voucher scheme that might well be the perfect present for Christmas. Tokens can be sent as physical Gift Cards or electronic eGifts – so have no worries about delivery dates – and they can be used at more than 240 venues nationwide, including all of London’s West End.

Oh, and did we mention that Tokens have no expiry date? Yep – this one’s a gift for life, not just for Christmas!


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“… a huge selection of shows.”

Not found your perfect Christmas present just yet? Not to fear – just browse through our London shows section. From show-stopping musicals to family entertainment, and hard-hitting dramas to stunning dance shows, there really is something for everyone.

Feeling particularly festive? Check out our Christmas shows to see this season for some of our top December openings’ tips.

And if all else fails, well… “socks for everyone!”?

Hamilton socks

Whatever you end up going for, have a very Merry (theatrical) Christmas!


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