On a shoestring
Want to have all the fun but on half the funds?
Edinburgh is a city with something for eveyone- that includes different festivals and it also includes pricing to fit every pocket.
For festival savings there’s a host of handy ways to see more shows for less. And don't forget there are 100s of free shows and events at the Festivals too. The Science, Storytelling and Edinburgh Art Festivals in particular all have a range of free events, and many other festival spaces (such as the Edinburgh Mela and Charlotte Square Gardens for the Edinburgh International Book Festival) are free to wander around in and let you soak up the atmosphere before deciding to buy. If you like a good bargain then you’ll love our tips for getting the best value out of your festival experience. Some of the best festival moments are free so free your time and make the most of them. Welcome to the cheap seats.
Festival previews – In summer, early birds are rewarded by getting cheaper tickets the days before shows officially open. Savings for these dry run dress rehearsals can be as much as half the face value of the tickets so plan an early August arrival and enjoy preview prices. Edinburgh's Hogmanay also run an early bird special to reward revellers for buying tickets ahead of the time.
2 for 1 tickets – The Fringe is awash with half-price offers while other festivals often do giveaways through media partners in the form of cut out coupons in the newspapers. The biggest of these is the Fringe 2 for 1 weekend, where a huge chunk of the programme is discounted on the first Sunday and Monday of the festival. Many venues also list 2 for 1 shows at the venue box office throughout the Festival and via our OFFERS page.
Find the freebies – The only thing better than perfect is a free show. For a fantastic festival experience, seek out the freebies on our EVENTS page or by visiting each individual Festival website to find out about any free events in their programme.
Barter or bust – Fringe performers who are promoting their show with flyers on the High Street may offer you free tickets for performances at the start of the Festival (especially if they have an important reviewer coming to their show, and they want there to be a big audience!).
All good turns deserve another however – so please return the favour and give them feedback on the show if you see them afterwards, help spread word of mouth for them by recommending the show to others, or even post a review online on this website.
Start working – If you’re a festival fanatic and want to see the inner workings, you could take a job or volunteer at a venue. Contact venues directly to find out what’s on offer. As well as the thrill of being part of the action you get to see all the action – for free
Go online – For giveaway goodies, sync up with social networking. Most of the festivals and venues have their own blogs, Facebook pages and Twitter updates. These are often used for ticket giveaways or discounted offers so poke, follow and tweet your way to cheaper festival fun. Also visit our EVENTS section for deals and prizes.
Soak it up – While away the hours just soaking up the festival atmosphere. Hang out at festival venues, chat to performers and enjoy watching the world go by. Whole days can disappear at places like The Pleasance Courtyard, Underbelly Pasture and Assembly’s Lane Bar. See that day out with a bang and make a date for the Saturday night fireworks displays of the Tattoo. Pick your own vantage point and get your mates together for the midnight showpiece above Edinburgh Castle.