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TV licence concessions

If you enjoy watching the television, then you need to make sure you have a valid TV licence.

You’ll need a valid TV licence to watch or record live TV programmes on any channel (including BBC), or if you download or watch any BBC programmes using BBC iPlayer – whether that’s live on iPlayer, or watching downloaded content on a viewing device (such as a TV, computer, tablet or mobile phone). 

You can spread the cost by making monthly or quarterly payments. 

Sign our petition to save free TV for older people

The BBC has announced plans to means test TV licences for the over 75s. We’re petitioning the Government to keep TV free for all older people. Join our campaign.


Can I claim a discount on my TV licence?

There are various TV licence discounts.

  • If you’re aged 75 or over, you can currently get a free TV licence. The free TV licence will cover you and anyone else you live with, no matter what age they are. However, plans have been announced to means test the TV licence for over 75s. Keep reading to find out how this could affect 
  • If you’re aged 74, you can get a short-term licence which will cover you until you're 75.
  • If you’re blind or have a severe sight-impairment you can claim a 50% discount on your licence. If you live with someone else, the licence will need to be in the name of the person who is blind or sight-impaired to get the discount.
  • If you’re living in a care home or sheltered housing, you can get an Accommodation for Residential Care (ARC) licence which costs £7.50. You will only need this if you watch TV in your own separate accommodation, not if you only watch TV in common areas such as a residents lounge.

What benefits can you claim?

Do you know what benefits you are entitled to? Our Benefits Calculator can help you, quickly and easily, to find out what you could be claiming.


How do I claim my TV licence discount?

If you’re aged 75 or over, you need to apply for a free TV licence as it’s not given out automatically. Contact TV licensing to apply. You’ll need to provide:

  • your date of birth
  • National Insurance numbers or a photocopy of your passport, driving licence or birth certificate
  • your name, address and postcode
  • your current TV licence number.

If you’re aged 74, contact TV licensing to apply for a short-term TV licence. The licence will last until the time when you turn 75; you should then automatically receive a free over-75 licence. You’ll need to provide:

  • your date of birth
  • national insurance numbers or a photocopy of your passport, driving licence or birth certificate
  • your name, address and postcode
  • your current TV licence number.

If you’re blind or sight-impaired, contact TV licensing. Once you’re registered, all your TV licence renewals will be at the concessionary rate. You’ll need to provide:

  • a photocopy of the certificate from your local authority ophthalmologist confirming that you’re blind or sight-impaired
  • your TV licence application form and fee.

If you’re living in a care home or sheltered housing, contact the warden, staff or managing authority where you live who will apply for an ARC licence for you. To qualify you must:

  • be retired and aged 60 or over or
  • disabled.

What if I've already paid for a full TV licence?

If you have already paid the full fee for a TV licence and you think you might be eligible for one of the discounts listed above, then contact TV licensing who can help you apply for a refund.

Getting a refund

If you live in a care home or sheltered housing, ask the warden, staff or managing authority where you live to help you apply for a refund.


How would plans to means test TV licences affect me?

In 2018, the BBC opened a public consultation into whether or not to get rid of the free TV licence for over 75s. In June 2019, they announced that they plan to means test the free TV licence - meaning they'll take into account how much money you have when deciding if you should get it. 

To be eligible for a free TV licence, people over 75 will need to be claiming a benefit called Pension Credit. People who aren't claiming Pension Credit won't be eligible for a free TV licence. These changes are expected to come into force in 2020. 

With this in mind, it's important to find out whether you're eligible to claim Pension Credit. Lots of people are, but just don't realise.

Age UK's benefits calculator can help you find out if you're eligible to claim Pension Credit and any other benefits you might be entitled to. Whether you're 75 yet or not, there's no harm in checking. 

Check if you're eligible for Pension Credit

Our benefits calculator can help you find out if you can claim Pension Credit, which would mean you'd be eligible for a free over 75s TV licence if the planned changes go ahead.


What should I do next?

Talk to TV Licensing

Visit the TV Licensing website for more information

Find out more about Pension Credit

Pension Credit is an income-related benefit to give you some extra money in retirement. It can also help you claim other benefits and concessions.

We're here to help

We offer support through our free advice line on 0800 678 1602. Lines are open 8am-7pm, 365 days a year. We also have specialist advisers at over 130 local Age UKs.

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Last updated: Jul 03 2019

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