Where is the best place to pick up discount tickets for the theater In London? We will be staying in the Belgravia area and would like to chose a show for one of our evenings there.
The official half-price TKTS booth is located in Leicester Square in the heart of the theater district. More info can be found here: www.officiallondontheatre.co.uk/tkts
Flora, your best bet is the "tkts" booth in Leicester Square (close to Trafalgar Square and the National Gallery). Discounted tickets for many (but not all) of the shows are offered for sale on the morning of the show. They have both a paper chart as well as an electronic display to indicate which tickets are on sale.
If the show you want to see is not "on the list" that day, you'll probably have to buy full price tickets at the theatre (which is what I had to do a few months ago for Mamma Mia).
Rick's Guidebook provided a warning about other "half price" ticket vendors. The official and best place to buy is the tkts outlet.
I also stayed in the Belgravia area, but can't recall if I used Bus or the Tube to get to Leicester Square?
There is also an Underground station that sells discount theater tickets. Can't exactly remember which one, but I'm almost positive it was on the Picadilly line and within the theater district. (It might actually have been the Leicester Square stop.) That's where I always got mine during my time in London. The prices must have been pretty good, because I was a poor student at the time!
I agree with Ken. Watch out for those half price ticket booths. We bought our tickets from one of these booths. When we arrived at the theatre, another couple had tickets for our seats! I guess ours did not look legitimate, so the usher removed us from our seats and placed us way in the back. It was quite embarassing. But at least we were able to watch the show!
If tickets for the show you want to see are not available at the TKTS booth, call the theatre box office the morning of the show and ask if there are any "concessions" for sale (such as returned tickets and matinee tickets).
We had great luck at the tkts booth last week. Another place that you might want to check out before you go is www.theatremonkey.com. I was able to get balcony Spamalot tickets and a 2-course meal at Planet Hollywood (not a place I would normally choose, but you have to eat, right?) for 20 GBP per person. The best part of it was is that the evening we went, the balcony was closed so they upgraded us to like the 10th row!
They have a bunch of other deals like that and other package deals with hotel rooms -- worth checking out.
You can also stop by the theatre the day of the show, usually after the matinee has started, to pick up discounted tickets for that night's show (usually 20 to 25 pounds). Provided you're not looking to purchase too many tickets (one or two) you should almost always be able to get some. While I was living there, my friends and I did that all the time, and we would get amazing seats almost every time.
If you want to order tickets ahead of time check out Albemarle of London. They are reliable.