Going to the cinema in London can be a pretty pricey affair. There are numerous cinemas in London, dotted all around the capital; most of these belong to chains, although there are also some independent ones as well – which, we think, provide a more pleasurable cinematic experience!
Tips for saving money when visiting cinemas in London
- Go to the cinema during the day – ticket prices increase for evening performances.
- If applicable, use a student/seniors card.
- If you’re a student, check when you can use your student card – some cinemas only accept them before a certain time of the day, or Monday to Fridays only.
- Avoid some of the chain cinemas right in the centre (i.e. in the West End) as these will often charge the most.
- Having said that, the Prince Charles Cinema, just off Leicester Square, has good prices (for new releases it’s £10, or £7.50 for members, though some weekday performances can be as low as £4 for members) and also often shows slightly older films. They also have viewings of Sing-Along A Rocky Horror Picture Show and Sing-Along a Sound of Music, which are exactly as they sound – tickets for these cost £15.
- If you know of someone that is on the Orange mobile phone network, get them to check out Orange Wednesdays. At participating cinemas on…er…Wednesdays, tickets are 2 for 1.
- If you’re an avid cinema goer and in London a far bit, consider joining your local cinema’s membership club. For a not very high annual membership fee, ticket prices will be slightly reduced. (And you’ll probably also get other membership benefits too!)
- This isn’t really a tip for keeping the cost of cinema-going down, though it is a tip for enjoying your cinema experience a bit more! Try to avoid the main chain cinemas (as listed below) and go to one of the independents (listed below below) instead. Theatres tend to be smaller and a bit more intimate (great for dates!), with far comfier seats or even sofas. Some even have bars where you can purchase food and drink from.
Everyman Cinema 96-98 Baker Street, W1 (other locations in Islington, Maida Vale, Belsize Park and Hampstead)
Curzon Cinemas Curzon Soho, 99 Shaftsbury Avenue, W1 and Curzon Mayfair, 38 Curzon Street, W1
Electric Cinema 191 Portobello Road, W11
Gate Cinema 87 Notting Hill Gate, W11 (one of the Picturehouse Cinemas – also in Clapham, Greenwich, Hackney, Stratford and Brixton)
ICA Cinema The Mall, SW1
The Lexi Cinema 194b Chamberlayne Road, NW10