Visit the London Eye
In this post, we will provide an overview of how to get London Eye tickets, available discounts, opening hours, and where to find the attraction.
Originally built for the millennium celebrations in the year 2000, the London Eye is now a permanent fixture on the London skyline.
This massive ferris wheel is almost like a viewing deck, as each section of the wheel is surrounded by glass and has plenty of room to take a look around the city.
The most popular paid tourist attraction in the United Kingdom, the London Eye hosts over 3.5 million visitors every year.
Tickets can be bought at the ticket office located right next to the Eye. However, booking in advance will actually save you money.
There are three different types of admission to choose from.
- standard ticket
- same-day ticket
- fast track ticket
A standard ticket (advanced booking) is essentially general admission, allowing you to get on the London Eye.
Same-day tickets are $3 more expensive, so you actually stand to save money by purchasing admission in advance.
A fast track ticket will allow you to skip the ticket line, ensuring you get into the attraction as quickly as possible.
Top Tip: The busiest time on the Eye is from 11:00 to 15:00, so book outside of this window if you can!
- Standard Ticket: £27/Adults | £22/Children
- Same-Day Ticket: £30/Adults | £24/Children
- Fast-Track Ticket: £37/Adults | £32/Children
- Fast-Track Same-Day Ticket: £40/Adults | £34/Children
- Children under 3 get in for free.
If you want to save money on tickets, read our discounts section for more information.
This section will cover all of the best ways to save money on London Eye tickets, including tourist passes, combo deals, and other discounts.
London Tourist Attraction Discount Passes
The London Eye is included with more than one tourist pass.
These passes provide discounts of 50% or more on a variety of fun activities, and they make it easier to get into some of the best attractions in the city.
If you’re interested in saving some money on this attraction, consider one of the following options:
Each of these services provides a standard ticket (advanced booking), but you will still need to get in line and show your pass at the ticket counter.
If you want to avoid the ticket line, consider getting a fast track ticket instead.
Merlin’s Magical London Pass
This is like a cross between a tourist pass and a combo ticket. There are a total of five different attractions included with this discount service, including the following:
- London Eye
- SEA LIFE London
- Madame Tussauds
- Shrek’s Adventure
- The London Dungeon
Merlin’s Magical London Pass is £63 for adults and £50 for children. The pass is valid for a total of 90 days, giving you plenty of time to visit each attraction at your own pace.
If you’re only planning to visit a few attractions, this is an excellent alternative to the tourist passes.
Each of the following combo tickets includes the London Eye and one or more additional activities.
- Standard Ticket: £30/Adults | £24/Children
- Same-Day Ticket: £34/Adults | £26/Children
- Standard Ticket: £52.50/Adults | £30.75/Children
- Standard Ticket: £41/Adults
- Same-Day Ticket: £44/Adults
- Standard Ticket: £51/Adults | £41/Children
- Standard Ticket: £61/Adults | £61/Children
- Standard Ticket: £92/Adults | £92/Children
While some of these combo packages are available for same-day purchase, most of them are advance bookings for standard tickets.
2 For 1 Discount
If you’re planning to visit the London Eye with another person, this is a great way to save money on the attraction.
All you have to do is use the National Rail to travel to the attraction and you can get two tickets for the price of one.
For more details on this opportunity, make sure to read our post covering the 2 for 1 program in London.
- Get a 13% discount on family tickets when you book a minimum of 1 adult and 2 children for the London Eye.
- Group tickets are available at a discount of 15% for groups of 7+ and 20% for groups of 10 or more.
- Groupon will sometimes offer great deals on attractions like the London Eye.
In this section, we will explain how to get to the London Eye, hours of operation, best times to visit, and anything else you might need to know before hopping on board.
Where is the London Eye?
The London Eye is located in central London and adjacent to the River Thames and across from the City of Westminster.
It is within walking distance from several popular London attractions, including:
The easiest way to reach this landmark is to take the tube to the nearest underground station, Waterloo. The London Eye is a 7-minute walk away from the station.
You can also easily access the London Eye from Westminster Station.
If you wish to arrive by boat, many Thames River cruise services stop at the nearby London Eye Pier.
We recommend clicking here for directions to the London Eye from anywhere in the London area.
London Eye Operational Hours
This popular attraction has specific hours of operation throughout the year, but they also extend their hours every now and then.
- Standard Hours: 10 am – 8:30 pm
- Extended Hours: 10 am – 9:30 pm
Extended hours vary quite a bit, so you will need to check the London Eye schedule to find out how late it will be open when you choose to visit.
For more late night options, be sure to read our post on things to do at night in London.
Best Times to Visit
The London Eye can get pretty busy between the hours of 11 am – 6 pm each day, so there aren’t many opportunities to avoid the crowd.
If you prefer to visit during quieter hours, we recommend either an early outing when they first open at 10 am or a later trip between 6 pm – 8:30 pm.
Surprisingly, sunset is one of the quieter times at this attraction, and it’s also one of the best opportunities for a great view of the city.
Be aware that typically, crowds are larger on the weekend than on weekdays. Consider coming on Monday – Thursday for the most leisurely experience.
How Long Will It Take?
This question really depends on your plans for the day.
If you’re going to see the London Eye over the weekend, you might want to set some extra time aside because the lines will probably be a bit longer than usual.
However, if you get fast track tickets, you can avoid the ticket line and get on this attraction quite quickly.
Visitors who are using either a standard (advanced booking) or same-day ticket should expect to wait anywhere from 20-30 minutes in line before reaching the ticket booth.
The ride on the London Eye will last about 30 minutes in total.
In total, someone with a fast track ticket can expect this activity to take approximately 30-60 minutes.
Standard (advanced booking) and same-day ticket holders should set aside at least 1 – 1 ½ hours for the ride.
Other Things to Know
There are a few additional details you may want to keep in mind when visiting this landmark.
- Large bags are not allowed onto the Eye – small, personal bags only. There is no baggage hold at the Eye – the nearest is at Waterloo Station.
- There is no audio commentary at any time during your visit although a guidebook can be bought for £3.00.
- There is a bench in the centre of each capsule that you can sit on but this provides little view, so be prepared to stand.
- Since you will be on the ride for a total of 30 minutes, you should use the restroom before getting in line.
- Food and drink are NOT allowed on the Eye.
The London Eye is the tallest ferris wheel in Europe. In fact, when it was constructed in 1999 it was the tallest ferris wheel in the world!
The Eye was built at a cost of £70 million pounds and boasts a diameter of 120 metres (394 feet) and a height of 135 metres (443 feet).
A team of seven architects worked together to design the London Eye and on a good day, guests can enjoy a view of up to 25 miles away!
The wheel rotates extremely slowly; 26cm (10in) per second – which is about 0.6 miles per hour.
Visitors ride the Eye in one of 32 (one for every London Borough) capsules that are specially designed to remain in the same position as the wheel revolves.
Each capsule, capable of holding up to 28 people, is sealed and air-conditioned so it remains comfortable inside regardless of the weather.
A single capsule weighs around 10 tonnes and they were recently refurbished in 2009 with a process that saw individual capsules being removed and floated down to the river to Essex for maintenance work!
- Palace of Westminster
- Thames River Cruise
- Westminster Abbey
- Imperial War Museum
- Churchill War Rooms
- The London Dungeon
- SEA LIFE Aquarium
- Shrek’s Adventure
- 10 Downing Street
- Big Ben