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CEA Card – How Disabled People can get a FREE Cinema Ticket for a Carer

The CEA card is a card scheme that was developed by the UK Cinema Association (UKCA) for use in cinemas all across the UK. It allows a disabled visitor to receive a complimentary ticket whenever they visit the cinema.

The card will be in the name of the person with the disability so that they are able to take whoever they choose with them to offer assistance. This means it can be used by people who receive regular care from a number of different people.

The reasons why you may need assistance at the cinema include:

  • You require help to move around the cinema and find a seat
  • You would require help to locate and use an emergency exit
  • You require help to access and use the toilet
  • You require help to purchase refreshments.

The person that you receive the free ticket for will be expected to provide you with this assistance whenever it is needed.

How Much Does A CEA Card Cost?

There is a £6 fee that you will need to pay for the CEA card. This fee is payable on an annual basis as the card will need to be renewed every year. The fee is charged to cover administration costs and the production of a physical card. You can renew your card online or by post.

Are You Eligible For A CEA Card?

In order to be eligible for a CEA card, the person that requires assistance must be aged eight years or older. You also need to be in receipt of one of the following benefits.

  • Disability Living Allowance (DLA)
  • Attendance Allowance (AA)
  • Personal Independence Payment (PIP)
  • Armed Forces Independence Payment (AFIP)

You will also be eligible if you hold one of the following.

  • Severely Sight Impaired Registration (formerly Registered Blind)
  • Sight Impaired Registration (formerly Partially Sighted)

You will be asked to provide proof of your eligibility as part of the application process.

How Do You Apply For A CEA Card?

You can apply for a CEA card online or via post. In order to prove that you are in receipt of the required benefit you will need to provide confirmation from the DWP of the benefit award. This should be dated within the last twelve months. People that are registered as sight impaired should provide the certificate of this registration. If you make an application online, then you will be able to upload your documents. You will need to provide a photo of yourself that will go on the card, and this can also be uploaded.

If you are applying by post, you will need to send hard copies of the documents and a physical photograph. Photocopies of documents are accepted, but the CEA may ask for original documents on occasion. If you do have to send original documents, then you should include a self-addressed envelope if you want them to be returned to you.

How Long Will I Have To Wait For My Card?

Once your card has been paid for, then you should receive it within five days. If you are applying online, you can make your application and payment immediately. It will take longer for your application to be processed if you have made the application by post. Once you have received your card, you are able to start using it immediately.

What Should I Do If My Card Is Lost, Stolen Or Damaged?

If your card is lost or stolen, or becomes damaged, then you will need to apply for a replacement. You will need to resend your eligibility documents and pay the £6 fee. Therefore you should take care of the card in order to avoid having to pay for a new one.

Can I use my CEA Card at the Theatre?

No, you can only use your CEA card in Cinemas.


If you visit the cinema regularly, and you need help with care while you are there, then a CEA card can be really useful. It means that your carer will be able to accompany you to the cinema without paying for an extra ticket. The low cost of the card makes it excellent value for money. Over 90% of cinemas across the UK accept this card, so there is a good chance that there is a cinema local to you that you will be able to visit.