Being a student involves being perpetually worried about saving the pennies – discount porridge and cheap takeaway pizzas are pretty much a rite of passage. But how do you satisfy the theatre cravings without breaking the bank? We round up some of the best ticket offers available for students and young people – it’s always worth checking out your nearest venue to see what’s on offer!
You should also bear in mind WhatsOnStage’s own Theatre Club – offering a range of offers across the year.
Young people aged 14-25 and full-time students can see RSC shows for £10 through the company’s partnership with TikTok! These aren’t just the ones in Stratford either (so shows in London are partially eligible) – and best of all you can bring a friend for the same price. Buzzing.
Chichester’s Prologue scheme offers £5 tickets to young people for all its productions across its summer and winter seasons (which considering the breadth and quality, is a great thing).
The Donmar really go all-out when it comes to bringing new people into the theatre fold, and they’ve been overhauling their programme in the last year to make sure their schemes are more and more accessible. Every year they make thousands of tickets freely available for under 25s – offered by ballot, tickets are released on the last Friday of the month for the following month’s performances if you sign up for the Young and Free mailing list. There is a Donmar Daily Release every day offering tickets to sold out shows. Oh, and for their 30th birthday, a limited number of £10 tickets have been made available for under 30s for every performance – thanks to a partnership with Barclays. That’s pretty cool!
4. Young Vic
You can also get £12 tickets at the Young Vic if you’re under 25 or a full-time student. They also offer “Lucky Dip” seats for a tenner – you book in advance and only find out your seat number once you arrive – you could score some premium seats at a budget price! And the icing on the cake is £10 First Preview Lottery, available for all their productions.
For those well prepared, the Old Vic release £10 tickets for the first five previews of each show five weeks before opening. So keep your eyes on their Twitter feed as the tickets are usually snapped up fast! These are available to those of all ages and from all backgrounds but are a very tasty opportunity to see some star-studded shows before anyone else.
Another one for the 25-and-unders – you can get £5 ticket to any production in the Almeida’s new season, at a selection of performances throughout the run. You need to book online using the 25UNDER code. There are also U30 discounts, while the venue also has a track record of offering free performances as part of a series of cracking day events. Those claiming Jobseekers Allowance and students can book second-price-band tickets for £25 on Monday to Thursday evenings, plus Wednesday and Saturday matinee performances.
7. Royal Court
Lots here too! First look tickets are available for some shows at reduced prices when shows are in the development process, all seats in their two venues are £12 for Monday performances (available on our website from 9am on the day of the show), concessions are offered for previews and matinees AND there are £15 tickets for under 27s. Students can also get money off standard prices.
There are a number of £5 and £10 tickets available for those aged 16-to-25, plus access to exclusive workshops and discounts at their cafes and bookshops. A £10 Friday rush is always wildly competitive but a good way to bag a bargain, while for those game for a queue there are reduced standby tickets for those who have student, Stage Pass, SOLT, NCA or theatre union IDs, or if unemployed.
Aged between 14 and 25? Sign up to Young Barbican and get discounted access to theatre, film, art and more. Tickets are priced between £5 and £15, with no booking fees.
Another great scheme giving 16 to 26 year-olds £5 tickets for the majority of shows in the three Sheffield Theatres venues – a minimum of 40 tickets will be available per production (except otherwise stated). The tickets are available when each show goes on general sale.
Formerly Mousetrap, Go Live is a theatre education charity whose aim is to bring theatre to disadvantaged young people. They have some fantastic schemes for young people – including their club, which offers £7 per ticket (for those aged 15 to 18) and £12 (for those 19 to 24).
Nottingham’s principal producing house has dedicated ticketing options for young people! Their Youth Pass is free to apply for and provides discount opportunities for shows across the year.
The lovely Manchester Royal Exchange also offers fabulous schemes – including under 30s £7 tickets, Pay What You Can performances, day seats, half price previews, and more. Worth being proactive and planning ahead!
15. West End day seats
Tons of West End shows offer a variety of discounts for early birds who queue in the morning or have the right app on their phones – be it Harry Potter‘s Friday Forty or Hamilton‘s lottery. Sometimes spontaneity can be rewarded!
The staff at The Yard hate the idea of seats going spare – so they offer any spare seats up at a price of £5 on the day for under-25s. Not a bad deal for one of London’s best up-and-coming venues!
Edinburgh’s top theatres (Festival Theatre, King’s Theatre and The Studio) have banded together for a “Try it for a Tenner” scheme – offering £10 standby tickets from 12pm on the day for all their shows. Student or Young Scot ID required. Spoilt for choice! They’re also looking out for student ambassadors to help support shows.
The Curve in Leicester offers a lovely free membership for young people and studnets which can mean discounted tickets, priority booking and money off at the Stage Door bar and Green Room café.
The Hampstead Theatre has also got a great scheme, offering £10 tickets to under 30s. Again you’ll need to be speedy as they go fast!
20. Kiln Under 26s
For you north Londoners wanting a slice of premium theatre action, the Kiln offers £10 theatre ticket offers, invitations to Q&As and workshops PLUS £5 cinema tickets for standard film screenings for those under 26s. Not too shabby!