Membership FAQs

Contact the membership team

Please call us on +44 (0)20 3166 6327 or email us at [email protected]. Alternatively, you can also write to us at:

Historic Royal Palaces
Apartment 26
Hampton Court Palace

Hillsborough Castle

How do I book house tours of Hillsborough Castle and visit the gardens?

Tours of the house are free for members and need to be booked in advance. To reserve your place please call +44 (0)33 3320 6000

To visit the gardens no booking is required, simply present your membership card at the gate on arrival.

More information about Hillsborough Castle

Kew Palace

Why do I have to pay the Kew Gardens entry fee to get to Kew Palace?

Historic Royal Palaces only manage the building and its footprint. The gardens in the immediate environs of the palace and the surrounding Kew Gardens continue to be managed by a separate organisation - the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. 

Unfortunately it is not possible to distinguish between those who would like to visit Kew Palace alone and those who would like to experience everything within the boundaries of the Gardens.

This means that those who wish to visit Kew Palace must pay an admission fee, payable to Kew Gardens.

Historic Royal Palaces’ members do receive 10% off the entrance fee to Kew Gardens, which can be used as many times as you like throughout the year.

Members can show their Historic Royal Palaces membership card at the ticket office to obtain their discount into Kew Gardens.


More information about Kew Palace

Using your membership

Can I join if I live overseas? If you're a non-UK resident with an overseas address it is still possible to purchase a membership in exactly the same way as a UK resident.  We are able to send out membership materials to international addresses but please do be aware that delivery times may be longer than to UK addresses. Please note that there is no shipping cost to deliver your membership pack and card.  To set up a Direct Debit you must use a UK Bank Account and UK address.

Inside Story, the magazine for members of Historic Royal Palaces, will be sent to you electronically. Please ensure you give us your email address when you join to ensure you are kept up today about all your membership has to offer.

Can I use Tesco Vouchers? You can only exchange your Tesco Vouchers to Tesco Days Out Tokens. You can then buy a day entry ticket to the Tower of London, Hampton Court Palace or Kensington Palace. At the end of your visit to the palace of your choice you can then upgrade the tickets towards the membership cost. Please note that Tesco Vouchers can't be used for the full cost of the membership.

How much money will I save in becoming a member? By joining as a member, you’re immediately saving money. The cost of membership gives you free entry from the day you join as well as any future visits, as opposed to purchasing a ticket on each visit. Please see the ticket prices below to see how much you would save.  

If you join the membership scheme and pay by Direct Debit you will receive an extra 3 months for free. Please note that this is an ongoing yearly payment and if you wish to not renew you need to let us know. The 3 months free offer is for the first year only. To set up a Direct Debit you must use a UK Bank Account and have a UK address.

What happens when my child reaches their 5th birthday? Any child the age of 5 years and above requires a palace ticket or can be added to a family membership. When any of your children reach their 5th birthday you will be able to upgrade your membership to a family membership and simply pay the difference. This applies to joint membership holders as well.  Please notify us of this change in advance of your visit so we can update your membership and send you a new membership card.

I have a Family Membership and one of my children will shortly be approaching their 16th birthday. What should I do? Once your child has reached their 16th birthday they will no longer be covered by your Family Membership, but they can of course purchase their own membership which will enable them to continue to enjoy the many benefits that membership brings.

Do I have to name the second adult on the membership? Yes, joint and family memberships have to have a named second adult and only the named members are allowed to use the membership card. It is not an open membership and names are non-transferable.

Is there a student or senior membership category? No, we do not offer student or senior membership. If you are planning to visit frequently then you will still save money by purchasing a membership.

I need to visit the palaces with a carer, can I add one to my membership? If you need to visit the palaces with a carer you are entitled to add a carer to your membership for free. This carer is not named and therefore can be different each time you visit. However, please be aware, your membership does not allow the carer to visit any of the palaces by themselves.

To add a carer to your membership, please contact the membership department on 020 3166 6327 or by email at [email protected]

Do you have a life membership category? Yes, we have two life membership categories which are Individual and Joint. Please call 020 3166 6327 for further information or email us at [email protected]

Do you ever ask for ID? Whilst this is rare, we do have the right to ask for ID and we carry out spot checks at each palace. Your membership card entitles you (and the additional named adult if you have a family or joint membership) to many benefits and discounts. This only applies to the people named on the card and account. As you have very kindly shown your support by purchasing the suitable membership for yourself, the associated benefits are available only to the named card holders. Should you have friends and/or family who wish to visit, then do please recommend that they too purchase a membership. We do not offer an open membership.

Does my membership card allow me to skip the queues? Your membership enables you to skip the long ticket queues and head straight to the palace entrance with your membership card. Please note that there might sometimes be queues that you'll need to join at the palace entrances whilst the security teams check bags, tickets and membership cards. The palace staff work hard to ensure that these queues move very quickly. Please also take note that there may also be queues to get into popular exhibitions at each of the palaces, for example the Crown Jewels at the Tower of London.

What if I forget to bring my membership card? In order to gain entry to our sites you need to have your membership card with you. If you have any concerns about this then please contact the Membership Team who will be happy to advise.  If you arrive at your chosen palace and find that you have forgotten your membership card, please make your way to the ticket office where staff will be able to issue you a temporary membership ticket which will be valid for the day*. You will be required to verify certain account details and asked to provide appropriate ID. You will be required to sign the temporary ticket.  If we notice that a number of these tickets are issued against your account, then we will be in touch. Your membership card brings the cardholder many benefits so do please take care of it.

*Please note: Staff will be unable to issue you with a temporary membership card at The Banqueting House or Kew Palace. Therefore we cannot guarantee entry to these palaces without a valid membership card.

I have lost my card - please can I have another? Please either call us on +44 (0) 203 166 6327 or email us at [email protected] with your membership number, surname or post code and we will print a new card and send it as soon as possible. 

If you have lost your card and are planning to visit today or in the next few days, upon arrival please make your way to the ticket office. Upon verifying some account details, the team will be able to issue you with a new card. Please be aware that your previous card will be invalid. Should you find it, please destroy it as entry with the invalid card will not be permitted.

I joined online but I would like to start visiting straightaway, what shall I do? If you joined the membership scheme online then you should have received a confirmation email. We will post your permanent card and membership pack within 28 days. If you plan to visit one of the palaces before you receive your permanent card, simply bring your email with you, along with the credit/debit card used to purchase your membership, and we will give you a temporary membership pass to use for your visit.

I posted in my membership application and haven’t heard back yet, what shall I do? If you posted in your membership form recently and haven’t heard back from us it is likely that it’s still being processed.  It can take up to 28 days to post your permanent card and membership pack. If you plan to visit one of the palaces before you receive your permanent card, please either telephone us on +44 (0) 203 166 6327 or email us at [email protected] to check the status of your application.  We can then let you know what your membership number is so you can collect a temporary membership pass that is valid for your visit.

Can I sign up for a Direct Debit online to get three months free? Yes, you can sign up for a membership via direct debit by clicking here and get three months free on your first year of membership paying via Direct Debit. Please note that you can only sign up for a membership via direct debit if you currently have a UK bank account. If you don't, you can still sign up for membership online by clicking here or by calling 020 3166 6327.

The Direct Debit Guarantee

This Guarantee is offered by all banks and building societies that accept instructions to pay Direct Debits.

  • If there are any changes to the amount, date or frequency of your Direct Debit Historic Royal Palaces will notify you 10 working days in advance of your account being debited or as otherwise agreed. If you request Historic Royal Palaces to collect a payment, confirmation of the amount and date will be given to you at the time of the request.
  • If an error is made in the payment of your Direct Debit, by Historic Royal Palaces or your bank or building society you are entitled to a full and immediate refund of the amount paid from your bank or building society.
  • If you receive a refund you are not entitled to, you must pay it back when Historic Royal Palaces asks you to.
  • You can cancel a Direct Debit at any time by simply contacting your bank or building society. Written confirmation may be required. Please also notify us.

Direct Debits

Pay by annual Direct Debit for the first time and get three months FREE on your membership! Please note this offer is for members paying by direct debit for the first year only.

To purchase membership by direct debit, complete the mandate on our joining form (PDF)

To renew membership by direct debit, complete the mandate on our renewal form (PDF)

Join now by direct debit

Upgrading your tickets

Already bought admission tickets? If so, you can upgrade them into membership on the same day of your visit or up to two weeks after the original date of purchase.

How to:

In person - at Tower of London Welcome Centre, the main Hampton Court Palace Ticket Office, or the White Court ticket office at Kensington Palace.

By post - please send your completed membership form and your tickets to -


Historic Royal Palace

Hampton Court Palace

Apartment 26

East Molesey


Please note that only day entry palace tickets bought directly from Historic Royal Palaces can be used to upgrade towards a membership. Tickets from separate visits and third parties cannot be used. Tickets for palace events cannot be used when upgrading to a membership.


Change of address

How can I update you of my change my address? Please either call +44 (0) 203 166 6327 or email us at [email protected] along with your membership number, surname and the details of your new address.

Magic Garden

Is Magic Garden included in my membership? Yes, the Magic Garden is included in your membership.

I am a member. Does this mean that I need to purchase a ticket for children aged 3-5 years? As a valued member, you will not incur extra costs if you bring children under 5 years to the Magic Garden, but we would like to capture the details of all children living at your address who you wish to be included in your membership. This will enable the membership team to contact you about family activities and events at all our sites. Upon renewing your membership, please provide us with the names and dates of birth of all children you wish to bring. 

I'm a member. Who can use my membership card to visit the Magic Garden? Please remember that membership entitles only those named on the card to enter. Any additional or unnamed guests will be required to purchase additional tickets.

For more information about the Magic Garden, please see the Magic Garden FAQs

Magic Garden FAQs


How can I find out about becoming a patron? Annual support from patrons is invaluable in helping to ensure that we can give the palaces the care they deserve. Patrons of Historic Royal Palaces receive a number of exclusive benefits including unrestricted access to the palaces, invitations to openings, newsletters and much more. More information on becoming a patron

Become a patron


How can I make a donation?
If you’d like to make an individual donation, thank you. Please give as much, or as little as you like, and don’t forget to sign your Gift Aid Declaration. There are many projects that represent Historic Royal Palaces’ key principles of Guardianship, Discovery, Showmanship and Independence and these would not have been possible without support from individuals.

Make a donation

Gift Aid

What is Gift Aid?

If you are a basic or higher rate UK taxpayer, the Gift Aid Scheme allows Historic Royal Palaces to reclaim a further 25p on every £1 of your membership. This really boosts our income – and doesn’t cost you a single penny extra.

Gift Membership

How can I buy a Gift Membership? Gift membership can be purchased online or by downloading an application form. You can also purchase a gift membership at the Tower of London Welcome Centre, Hampton Court Ticket Office, and Kensington Palace Ticket Office, and various retail shops including:

• The Tower shop at the Tower of London
• The Palace shop at Hampton Court
• The main gift shop at Kensington Palace

Gift membership categories:

• Individual
• Joint - (2 named adults)
• Family group - (2 named adults and up to six named children between the ages of 5-15)
• Family One Adult - (1 adult and up to six named children between the ages of 5-15)

What do I receive when I purchase a gift membership? When you purchase a gift membership you will receive a voucher for the membership, along with a gift membership redemption form for you to address to your chosen recipient.  When the recipient redeems the membership they will then receive a membership pack and membership card in the post.

How can I pay for my gift membership? You can pay for your gift membership by cash or card. Unfortunately, you cannot buy a membership via Direct Debit; this is because the bank account has to be in the name of the person on the membership.

Can I Gift Aid a gift membership? Unfortunately, you cannot pledge Gift Aid on a gift membership payment, HMRC do not allow this because the donor is not directly donating their own money.

Can I upgrade my tickets to a gift membership? Unlike regular memberships, you cannot use your tickets to upgrade to a gift membership.

Do members receive their 10% discount on gift membership sold in the shops? No, this is exempt from a discount.

Where do you send the gift pack? Unless you would like the gift membership pack to be sent directly to the recipient, we automatically send the membership to the buyer's address, to be presented to the recipient. If you would like the membership to be sent directly to the recipient, you can mark this on your application form and send their name and address to [email protected]

How long will it take to receive my gift membership? We will process and send out your gift membership within 10 working days.

How can I redeem a gift membership? If you’ve been given a gift membership, you can activate it anytime up to twelve months after the date of purchase. You simply need to fill out the redemption form and return it to the freepost address on the back of the form. Alternatively you can redeem your gift membership in person at the Tower of London Welcome Centre, and the Hampton Court and Kensington Palace Ticket Offices.

Will you let me know when my membership is about to end? After a year we will write to you, letting you know that your membership will expire shortly, asking if you want to renew it.


Buy gift membership online

Contact the Membership Team

If you have any further questions, please don't hesitate to get in contact with the membership team:

T: +44 (0)20 3166 6327 

E: [email protected].


Historic Royal Palaces

Hampton Court Palace

Apartment 26

East Molesey