- New Arrivals
Your Complete Guide to Buying Discounted Broadway Tickets - 10 Sure Shot Ways!
The Theatre District of New York is a prized jewel in America’s cultural history. Broadway shows represent the epitomy of theatrical perfection - the swell of curtains rising, grandeur sets and good old fashioned acting.
Tickets for Broadway shows are highly sought after by both international and domestic tourists, making them quite an expensive affair. For the theatre aficionados, paying for such costly tickets is a rare indulgence. If you are visiting the Big Apple, watching a Broadway production in all its extravagant glory is a must.
But paying exorbitant prices like $100 for two hours of artistic revelry is not necessary if you follow these ways to get discounted Broadway tickets. The average New Yorker may know about the TKTS discount booth in Times Square or how to snag up cheap tickets by standing in the Cancellation line. But there are actually quite a few ways to purchase discounted Broadway tickets without standing for hours in line or sacrificing good seats. Don’t be disheartened, many of these tricks also work for Off-Broadway and Off-off-broadway show tickets too. Here is a list of options you can explore to get the best deals your money can buy.
Best Ways To Get Discounted Broadway Tickets
1. NYC Tourist Attraction Discount Passes
If you are planning a touristy blitz on all that New York has to offer, then you should seriously consider purchasing a New York Pass. The NYC Discount Passes offer entry to hundreds of tourist hotspots and additional discounts on Broadway tickets! . The New York Pass gives up to 10% off full-price on specific Broadway shows, for example, Mamma Mia, Wicked, Marry Poppins and Spring Awakening among others. The Sightseeing Pass and The Sightseeing Flex Pass can get you $20 off Broadway tickets. Tickets for such highly regarded musicals are tough to purchase, and the added discount from these city passescan make a huge difference.
2. Off-season Perks
New York is an expensive city, no matter how thrifty you are. Visiting NYC in its off-season, from January to March can be quite economical. Although the weather is chilly with high chances of snow, you can enjoy New York’s finest museums and popular Broadway shows at discounted rates. New York locals should especially make use of this opportunity and enjoy a warm evening of theatrical respite from their daily grind. Although there are almost no new shows during the ‘off-season’ period, one can save up and enjoy classics like The Lion King or To Kill a Mockingbird for a nominal fee.
3. Broadway Ticket Apps
In this era of the digital revolution, the internet provides the solution to every problem. The traditional form of Broadway theatre has also jumped on the wagon, and websites like Telecharge and Ticketmaster offer online purchase of Broadway tickets. But if you are looking for heavy discounts on Broadway tickets, then apps like Headout are the way to go. With a complete list of all the scheduled Broadway shows, show summary and viewer reviews, Headout also offers the following options:
Discounted rates ( up to 20 to 40%) and cashback options on popular Broadway shows like The Phantom of the Opera, Aladdin, Frozen, etc.
Last-minute Broadway tickets to your favorite shows, with the best possible seats at an affordable price.
You can book months in advance, reserving the best seats in the house while still avoiding the expensive dynamic pricing of Broadway shows.
Exclusive deals like lotteries, 2 for 1 offer and giveaways for classic Broadway shows are also frequent. Here is a handy trick to keep you updated for the latest deals: subscribe to Headout’s newsletters and stay updated on the latest deals and offers.
4. Wednesday Matinees
Wednesday Matinees are designed for the older, retired, outside-the-city crowd to enable them to commute in on that day and avoid the early morning rush hour. A fair share of tourists and school groups constitute the Wednesday Matinee audience as well. Not sticking to the usual timings in the evenings like most Broadway shows, the Wednesday matinees take place in the afternoon at around 2 pm or 3 pm. Even though the timings are catered for these demographics, you could still buy the tickets at a whopping 10% to 50% discount. If you’re free on a Wednesday afternoon and don’t mind the occasional chat with some grandma, then grab discounted Broadway tickets and enjoy the show! Note, some shows don't have Wednesday matinees are usually those that don't have a strong appeal for kids, seniors, or tourists (i.e. shows aimed at young adults).. Also, not all Broadway shows have discounts on their Wednesday matinee.
5. Broadway & Off-Broadway Week
The Broadway and Off-Broadway Weeks are celebrations of NYC’s theatrical heritage. Twice a year, for a duration of almost two weeks each, the New York City's tourism arm and Broadway Producers offer this to all the theatre enthusiasts out there. During this time, you can buy 2 tickets for the price of 1. This helps in boosting ticket sales in the off-season and the viewers also enjoy their favorite shows in good company. Broadway week and Off-Broadway week are held from mid-January to mid-February and the second edition is held in September. The tickets for these events are released about two weeks prior. Be quick and reserve your seats as early as possible, since the popular shows tend to sell out quickly. Also, keep in mind that a couple of shows may not participate in Broadway Week. The seats on offer are mostly balcony or side-seats, but you can access the best seats in the house with a $20 increment per ticket. So go ahead, book your seats and pay tribute to the flourishing theatrical culture of New York.
6. Seasonal Theater Performances
New York’s theatre culture often spills over to places outside of its Theatre District, or as its commonly called: the Great White Way. These seasonal performances by Broadway artists are quite unique to behold. For example, in the months of July and August, Broadway in Bryant Park is held. Also, every summer for the last 50 years, Shakespeare’s plays are held in the Delacorte Theatre in Central Park every night. People line up for hours to get free tickets for these shows or try their luck at the lottery. Holiday-themed shows like Frozen the Musical or the Holiday Brass with the New York Philharmonic are held in the month of December, which are a must-watch.
7. Lottery Tickets - In-Person Lotteries & Digital Lotteries
If you want to go old school and leave things to luck, you could risk it a bit by opting for the
lottery tickets. There is no charge for entering the raffle and you could end up with front-row
orchestra seats at the price of $20 to $40. Lottery tickets come out only on the day of the show and if
you win the lottery, you have to purchase them in cash within 60 minutes of winning. NYTix has a lottery
schedule through which you could enter your name and hope to win.
In-person lotteries: If you go to the box office about three hours before the curtains go up, you have a shot at entering the lottery in person. Just write your name on the official lottery slip and hand it to the staff. After about half an hour you would know if it is your lucky day or not.
Digital Lotteries: With the coming of digital lotteries, you wouldn’t even have to bother going up to the box office and you could enter as many lotteries as you would like, unlike the in-person option. You could apply via various websites and apps. These are mostly facilitated and curated by some of the individual Broadway shows. Some of the websites that are ahead in the game are Lucky Seat, Telecharge, and TodayTix. Some shows like Hamilton run their own digital lotteries.
8. Group Discounts
The best way to go and see a Broadway show is to go in a large group. Apart from the fun, there is another advantage that you could get your hands on. Group discounts. For a group of 10-20 people, discounts range from 10% to 15% and that is more than enough for some of the top Broadway Shows. There is also no service fee on these tickets making them cheaper than the individual ones you might tend to buy. Paired with student discounts, the group discount is a great bet if you are arranging an educational visit to one of the city’s finest art hubs. Telecharge usually handles the ticketing for most Broadway shows and they are the ones to contact for the group discounts as well. The group tickets usually go on sale before the individual tickets so if you are aware of when the booking season starts, you could plan ahead and check the group prices beforehand and avail the discounts. The only drawback, so to speak, is the task of gathering so many people to see the same Broadway show!
9. Grab Box Seat tickets
The Box Seats in a Broadway theatre were once coveted privilege for the rich and powerful. It was considered a symbol of prestige, allowing you and your company privacy while enjoying the show. But since they offer a partially obstructed view of the stage, they have become one of the cheapest seats in the house, prone to discounts. Depending on the production, you might be able to get a closer view of the show or you may have to crane your neck for a significant amount of time. But one thing is guaranteed, you will save a lot of money when compared to an average seat in the theatre. You may have to approach the theatre’s box office for Box Seat tickets, where they will inform you about its partially obstructed view before booking the ticket.
10. TKTS & SRO
For patrons and last-minute planners, TKTS is the go-to option while buying discounted Broadway tickets.. Available only on the day of the show, the TKTS system gives up to 50% discount on the available shows on that day. The best place to get these tickets is the TKTS kiosk at Times Square. Here, there is a different line reserved for “plays” and that makes the proceedings quicker if you have to catch an early show. Also, it is located close to the Broadway show locations. The other places where you could snag some tickets are Downtown Brooklyn, Lincoln Center and South Street Seaport. The prices are constantly updated and curated according to the demand of that show’s tickets. The TKTS App and the TKTS Website also help in booking tickets last-minute. The only drawback of this dynamic system is that you don’t get to choose the seat while buying the tickets and have to settle with whatever you get from the stack. But not to be disappointed, as sometimes you are likely to land up with the best orchestra seats. TKTS assures that you have the best view from whatever is available at the least expensive prices.
SRO is showbiz jargon for “Standing Room Only.” Some shows offer SRO after they are sold out. These tickets for standing at the back of the orchestra for the duration of the show, at a fraction of the price of an average ticket. SROs generally go for $25 to $40, making them an affordable option for theatre enthusiasts.
Tips on Buying Discounted Broadway Tickets
The Right Show
The Theatre District of NYC is always buzzing with activity, with more than 30 shows going every evening. Don’t watch a Broadway show just for the sake of watching it. Do your research, go through the reviews and then book your tickets. Watching a beloved Broadway show can be a magical experience for most people, you just have to find the story which resonates with you. Broadway has something to offer to everyone, from children to veteran theatergoers.
The Right Seats
Choosing the right seats for a Broadway show may be confusing at first, but they play a huge role in your experience. The best seats will be the most expensive, but with a little research, you can get discounted tickets to good seats with an equally amazing view. The Orchestra seats are generally the costliest, but not many people know that the much cheaper front row Mezzanine seats are great for viewing large productions. Box seats are cheaper and they will provide you with privacy and extra leg-room, but they come at the cost of partially obstructed view of the stage. Avoid seats at the back of the orchestra and rear mezzanines. You can make an educated decision by going through this detailed seating guide of different Broadway theatres.
Weekend Vs Weekday
West End ticket prices are directly impacted by the day of the week. On weekdays, the tickets sell for much cheaper than the weekends because local Londoners don't visit the theatres during the former. This means that tickets for weekends are not only more expensive but are harder to get given the heavy demand. If you're looking for discounted West End tickets, a weekday performance is the correct choice.
Matinee Show Vs Evening Show
The Wednesday Matinee shows mainly held for senior citizens, tourists and school groups happen to be ideal for those who want to score cheap Broadway tickets ( 10 to 50% off). Evening Shows are more traditional and suited for the young, but getting a discount is quite tricky.
Theatre Development Fund Referral Tickets
The Theatre Development Fund (TDF) is a non-profit organization that also manages the TKTS booths in New York. If you fulfill their eligibility criteria, you can apply and become a member of the TDF, with a nominal fee. This will grant you access to discounted tickets for Broadway shows. A TDF member can book up to 9 tickets at a time, so even knowing a TDF member can be enough to secure discounted tickets for your favorite Broadway Musical or Play.
Many websites and ticketing apps have a newsletter through which they keep their readers updated on the latest productions in the world of theatre. Subscribing to these newsletters and keeping a tab on them can come in handy, as they often have additional discount codes for Broadway tickets.