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zinfanatic Jan 4th, 2007 10:44 AM

Theater Tickets in London
Is it possible and less expensive to order tickets for the theater by phone directly from the theater? I would like to avoid the service charges and order by phone to pick up in person in March.

PalenqueBob Jan 4th, 2007 10:53 AM

Many plays, except blockbuster hits that sell out are sold at the TKTS (sp?) ticket booth in Leicester Square during the day - once called the Half-Price Ticket Booth - it'a an official seller of surplus tickets for the West End Theatre group - note there are other agents in the area claiming themselves the official agents but i think bogusly so.

zinfanatic Jan 4th, 2007 11:01 AM

I want to see Billy Elliot. Is it worth taking a chance on 1/2 price or should I order directly from the theater?

TaniaP Jan 4th, 2007 11:13 AM

Not everything at TKTS is half-price. I've been watching the TKTS website for a few weeks (going to London in February) - tickets for Billy Elliot are sometimes available from TKTS, sometimes not, but they always seem to be regular price - no discount. Today they are 55 GBP from the theatre and 57.50 from TKTS -
Maybe you'd do better by contacting the theatre directly.


optimystic Jan 4th, 2007 11:23 AM

This website has information on the tkts booth.
The whats on sale today page indicates Billy Elliott tickets are sold but not at a discount.
You may be able to pick up at the theatre but whether this will save you any money is another matter! Everyone seems to tack on service charges and booking fees now.
Phone the box office... they will be able to give you a definitive answer.

optimystic Jan 4th, 2007 11:26 AM

oops! posted at the same time with the same info!

NeoPatrick Jan 4th, 2007 11:32 AM

I guess I'm unclear of where you're trying to save money. If you mean buying them direct from the box office to avoid Ticketmaster or other agency fees, then yes indeed, you will save buying them direct. But the face value of the ticket is just that no matter where you buy it.
I'll repeat too, I know of nowhere (including TKTS) where you'll find discounted tickets for Billy Elliot. In fact you may be scraping the bottom of the barrel to get ANY tickets for March as it is still one of the most popular shows in London.

Most theatres in London will sell you the tickets at regular face value over the phone with NO fee, although increasingly some are starting to add a small fee -- a pound or two -- for phone orders. That's still less than the agencies will charge though.

papagena Jan 4th, 2007 11:39 AM

The extra fees you pay for booking on the internet are REALLY annoying. But, compared to the amount you'll pay to travel to, stay, shop and eat in London, they're insignificant. I'd make the reservation and write off the booking fee as an irritation.

(This is assuming you're using something like ticketmaster where the booking fee is a couple of pounds. If it's any higher you're using the wrong booking agent).

zinfanatic Jan 4th, 2007 11:57 AM

Yes, the service fees etc. are very annoying and ,in fact, they seem to be a bit less than in the US. Yes, in comparison to the cost of our trip. it is just a "nuisance", but I hate paying them anywhere. Sometimes they can really add up to about 5 pounds!I will call the theater directly. I have checked and the tickets are available in March.

NeoPatrick Jan 4th, 2007 12:11 PM

Another good thing about calling the theatre direct is that they are SOOO friendly in London. I have had them patiently check all performances for a full week to see which show had the BEST seats. They are knowledgeable about the seats too and will help you avoid bad ones.

You do know how to make a CHEAP call to London right?

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