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TV licence concessions

If you're 75 or over and you claim Pension Credit, you're entitled to a free TV licence. If you're visually impaired, you may be able to get a discount.

Do I need a TV licence?

You need a TV licence to watch or record live programmes on any TV channel, including BBC channels.

You also need a licence to watch BBC programmes using BBC iPlayer – whether you're watching live or watching a downloaded programme on your TV, computer, tablet or smartphone.

A standard TV licence costs £159. However, you might be eligible for a discount or even a free licence. The rest of this page explains the different concessions in more detail.

Am I eligible for a discount?

There are various TV licence discounts and concessions, and which one you might be eligible for depends on your circumstances. You can find out more about them on the TV Licensing website.

If you're 75 or over and you receive Pension Credit

You can claim a free TV licence. It'll cover you and anyone you live with, regardless of their age.

If you're blind or you have a severe sight impairment

You can claim a 50% discount on your licence. If you live with anyone else, the licence needs to be in your name in order for your household to get the discount.

If you live in a care home or sheltered housing

You might be eligible for an Accommodation for Residential Care (ARC) licence, which costs £7.50.

You'll only need a licence if you watch TV in your own separate accommodation, rather than in a communal space such as a residents' lounge.

Speak to your warden or administration to find out whether your care home or sheltered housing qualifies for this type of licence.

What extra money are you entitled to?

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?

How to arrange your free or discounted TV licence depends on your circumstances.

If you're 75 or over and you receive Pension Credit

You need to apply for a free TV licence – they're not given out automatically. Contact TV Licensing on 0300 790 6117 for an application form.

If you’re blind or you have a serious sight impairment 

Contact TV Licensing. Once you’re registered, your TV licence renewals will all be at the discounted 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 live in a care home or sheltered housing

Contact the warden or administrator where you live – they can apply for an ARC licence for you.

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

If you've already paid the full fee for a TV licence but you think you might be eligible for a discount or exemption, contact TV Licensing who can help you apply for a refund.

If you live in a care home or sheltered housing, your warden or administrator can help you apply.

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.

Want more information?

Claiming Pension Credit entitles you to a free TV licence if you're 75 or over. It unlocks other things, too, so it's important to claim it if you're eligible. 

Find out more about Pension Credit

Download our Pension Credit information guide

Download our Pension Credit factsheet

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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 125 local Age UKs.

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Last updated: Apr 11 2022

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