Most people who travel to New York want to go see a Broadway show, but many prefer to wait until they are in New York and buy cheap Broadway tickets with TKTS New York, at the booth in Times Square. The reasons are varied: some people do not trust buying online and prefer to do it in person, some people thing the prices for Broadway tickets are too expensive, and some people haven’t made any particular plans for their trip to New York and simply wait until the last minute.
Here is some information and advice for anyone who wants to buy cheap Broadway tickets with TKTS New York.
1- What is TKTS?
TKTS is an abbreviation for the word “tickets”. The TKTS New York booths were created by the Theatre Development Fund (www.tdf.org), an association of several theaters in Manhattan whose goal was to promote and facilitate the
sale of last-minute tickets so that theaters could fill empty seats.
The rule of the game: cheap Broadway tickets with TKTS are same-day only. No advanced booking, no refunds and no exchanges.
In fact, the cheap Broadway tickets with TKTS in New York have become so popular that theaters have had to substantially increase the prices of full price tickets in order to compensate for the shortfall.
2- Deep Discounts on Broadway Tickets with TKTS
TKTS sells Broadway tickets at 20%, 30%, 40% or even 50% off, charging a $4.50 service fee.
3 – What Shows are Available at the TKTS New York Booth?
While many Broadway, Off-Broadway and Off-Off-Broadway shows are available at TKTS, not all shows are available. Some musicals (like The Lion King) do not normally offer cheap Broadway tickets with TKTS. And most shows that do work with TKTS New York only offer some sections of the theater and only some days.
Furthermore, if you are traveling during the high season (Christmas, New Year, Easter, July & August, etc.) and you want to make sure to get tickets for a popular show, I suggest that you purchase in advance… with NewYork60!
NewYork60 offers discounted rates of up to 25%, and you receive the best seats available. In addition, you can cancel or modify your reservation free of charge up to 10 days before the show.
4 – TKTS Booths
In general, I highly recommend that you go to the South Street Seaport TKTS (South of the Brooklyn Bridge, in Lower Manhattan), as it is much less crowded.
Regardless of whether you go to buy cheap Broadway tickets with TKTS, it is best if you can arrive 30 minutes before the booth opens.
Here are the addresses and opening hours for the TKTS Booths:
– Time Squares TKTS:
This booth is right in the middle of Times Square, right under the red steps at Broadway and 47th Street.
For evening shows:
Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday the hours are 3PM to 8PM
Tuesdays from 2PM to 8PM
Sundays from 3PM to 7PM
For morning shows:
Wednesday and Saturday 10AM to 2PM
Sunday 11AM to 3PM
Subway: 1, 2, 3, 7, N, Q, R, S to Times Square.
– South Street Seaport TKTS:
Recommended to buy your cheap Broadway tickets with TKTS. Every day from 11AM to 6PM except Sundays, from 11AM to 4PM.
TKTS South Street is now at the corner of Front Street and John Street.
Subway: J, Z, 2, 3, 4, 5 to Fulton Street or A, C to Broadway-Nassau.
Bus (from Midtown): M15 Downtown on 2nd Avenue towards South Street Seaport.
– Brooklyn TKTS:
Monday to Saturday from 11AM to 6PM (closed from 3PM to 3:30PM)
Located at the Metro 1 Tech Center at the corner of Jay Street and Myrtle Avenue Promenade.
Subway: A, C, F, R towards Jay Street Metro Tech or 2, 3, 4, 5 towards Court Street-Borough Hall.
Bus: B54, B57, B61 stop at Jay with Myrtle. The B67 and B75 arrive at Jay and Willoughby.
5 – The Downside of Buying Cheap Broadway tickets with TKTS
– You never know which shows will be available until you are at the booth.
– You risk the show you want to see being sold out.
– The people working there are not particularly welcoming, and make little if any effort to understand you (particularly frustrating for people who are not native English speakers).
– You will wait anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours, which isn’t much fun, especially if you are in the TKTS booth in Times Square, with traffic, erratic weather, crowds, etc.
– Many tickets are for “partial view” seats.
6 – Additional Tidbits about Purchasing cheap Broadway Tickets with TKTS New York
You can now buy your cheap Broadway tickets with TKTS with a credit card, in addition to cash and traveler’s checks.
Make sure to examine your tickets carefully and ask for any changes before leaving the counter because once you have paid you cannot change anything!
If you want to see a Broadway play (not a musical) then you can go to the EXPRESS line for PLAYS near window 12, as it is shorter.
When the shows of the day are displayed on panels of each side of the windows, choose at least three shows that you would like, as ticket availability varies.
Some scalpers will try to get you to buy from them while you’re waiting in line at the TKTS booth. Do not do this! Even if they say they are employees of TKTS they are not! No authorized tickets are sold outside of the windows. You just have to wait 🙂
If you’re in Times Square (with or without going to the TKTS booth), you can climb up the stairs at the red booth and enjoy the views! The staircase is open to the public until 1PM and access is free!
Once your tickets are in hand, I suggest that you arrive at the theater 15 to 30 minutes before the show starts.