What are Sun Superdays 2023 and how do they work? Tips and tricks to get ahead!
Updated for 2023!! You might be wondering what Sun Superdays is? The Sun Superdays is a yearly promotion that offers free tickets to major UK attractions. It is often mentioned in different money-saving websites and on social media as a great way of saving money on days out. And yes, it can be. By buying The Sun newspaper and collecting codes you can book two free tickets to a variety of attractions. I have written my top tips on how to make the most out of it so keep reading for an explanation of how Sun Superdays work.
What is Sun Superdays promotion and how does it work?
Sun Superdays is a great way of getting two FREE tickets to a variety of big theme parks and Merlin Attractions in the UK - there are tickets available for Alton Towers, Thorpe Park, Legoland Windsor, Chessington World of Adventures, Madame Tussauds, SEALife, Shrek's Adventure, Bear Grylls, Warwick Castle and so on - there have even been free Cineworld tickets in the past and cheap London Eye add-on tickets with other ticket purchases. All you have to do is buy The Sun paper during the 18-day long collection period, collect the codes inside, enter them on the app, and after you have enough (typically 9 codes) you can book two tickets.
In 2023 there are tickets to:
- Chessington World of Adventures, collecting starts Feb 11th
- Alton Towers, starting March 18th
- Legoland, starting April 22nd
- Thorpe Park, starting May 20th
- Warwick Castle, starting June 10th
- Bear Grylls, starting Sept 2nd
- Madame Tussauds, not confirmed
- London Dungeons, not confirmed
- SEALife, not confirmed
- Shreks Adventure, not confirmed
How does Sun Superdays work?
- Download the Sun Savers app or register at Sun Savers website using your full name that corresponds with your ID. You need to be 18+ years old.
- On the day collecting starts, buy The Sun newspaper (physical copy) and input the unique code to the Sun Savers mobile phone app or Sun Savers website. The code is inside the paper, labelled as Sun Savers code. I personally prefer to use the app, as you can scan the code rather than type it in.
- You will need to buy nine papers on nine separate days! Not nine papers on one day. So for example, you need a unique code from paper on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday etc etc, not just several codes from Monday newspaper.
- You will need to buy the papers on nine consecutive days if you want a weekend date or a school holiday date!
- You need to book on the day the booking opens for weekends and school holidays. The codes are available for 18 days, of which you need nine. Term-time tickets can often be booked through out the whole booking period, so if you are after them you don't necessarily need to buy the papers on consecutive days.
- Make sure you input each code in. You can do them in a batch, or one each day, but make sure you do this before the day the booking opens, as there are often issues with the site/app due to high traffic. If you are inputting codes on the booking day, make sure you do so early in the morning.
- When the booking opens, typically around 10AM or 11AM, you can choose your two free tickets. If there is high demand when the booking opens, you may be in a virtual queue. Set a reminder to log in to your app or the website before the booking slots open, I usually open it 15-30 minutes earlier in case it opens early.
- If you didn't get a date you can work with on the day you tried to book it, try later in the day or the following day. Occasionally there has been additional ticket drops after the initial rush.
Are Sun Superdays tickets really free?
No, not really, but it is still an excellent deal. You have to buy The Sun newspaper nine times. If you want a chance for a weekend or a school holiday date you need to buy them on nine consecutive days. This comes to £8.8 (price of five weekday newspapers at 80p and two Saturday £1 and two Sunday £1.4) and in addition a £2 booking fee. If you are willing to go on term-time weekday, you could just buy the weekday papers and pay £7.2 for the papers and £2 booking fee. So all in all you get two "free" tickets for a cost between £9.2 to £10.8.
Compare this to the online advance prices of £37 or on the day prices of £56 for one ticket to some of the theme parks, and you can see why people do this faff.
How many tickets can I book with Sun Superdays?
You are limited to two tickets per household. If you were to create two accounts, and book two sets of tickets, they would both be cancelled and you would often not find out until you get to the attraction.
Now, some people manage to circumvent this by using two separate names, emails and address details, and of course buying the papers twice every day, but it is more of a hassle than I can bear. If you wanted to go as a group or use four Sun Superdays tickets for your family, you would both have to log on at the same time and hope you manage to book the same day - and this is far from certain and quite stressful to organise. The weekends and school holiday dates go ridiculously quick.
Rather than trying to beat the system, I would recommend other means of finding cheap tickets. I've explained a few ideas here on my Legoland Windsor on a Budget post and here Chessington on a budget post.
Can I change the dates on my Sun Superdays tickets?
No, you cannot change the dates after booking, nor can you get any rainy-day guarantees or potential Covid-cancellation-refunds. You can't change the name on the tickets either. It's too bad, but it just is what it is with these types of promotions.
Can I buy/sell/gift my Sun Superdays tickets?
No, you cannot sell/buy/gift Sun Superdays tickets. You may be asked for an ID at the gates. If you do not provide the ID that corresponds with the name that is on the booking, you will be denied entry.
Due to people selling tickets on eBay and social media, there has been a crackdown by The Sun and the participating attractions and people are regularly asked for an ID at the gate and The Sun Superdays tickets checked against it. The terms and conditions I believe state now you should have photo ID, but in the past a bank card has been OK. To be on the safe side I'd bring a photo ID.
Also, do not buy the codes online either from anyone. You are likely to be scammed by someone who has copied codes off newspapers without buying them, or using ghost codes, and your tickets may be invalidated.
What is a ghost code and how do you use them for Sun Superdays?
Ghost code is a print run code - so sometimes there may be regional issues that make it impossible for unique codes to be printed on the papers. In this case, all papers from that print shop might have the same code, so there might be hundreds or thousands of the same code. These are sometimes shared online, such on a private Facebook group. This in a way is truly free, as you do not need to buy the newspaper to get the unique code, you just input the ghost code and it ticks that day.
However, using too many ghost codes might invalidate your tickets! In 2022, there were nine ghost codes shared for Legoland booking period. These were then shared on social media by various pages and influencers, and also on extreme couponing and money-saving sites. Presumably this led to an influx of bookings using only the shared (free) codes, breaking the figurative camel's back and The Sun issued a statement those tickets were invalidated as they broke the terms and conditions. From discussions online I gather it some were cancelled and some remained valid, and many were very stressed so I'd advise to stay clear of blatant rule-flouting of this sort.
How can The Sun find out if I use ghost codes / double-bookings?
They might not, or they might do. It wouldn't be difficult to use data analytic tools to find out multiple same names or same address details on separate bookings. Or if there are a lot of ghost codes attached to a wide variety of regional areas, it would flag up as suspicious, for example, if you were one day using a code issued in Cardiff, next day at Aberdeen, and third day in London. On some occasions people have reported their tickets have been cancelled due to detected double-bookings or overuse of ghost codes.
My Sun Superdays code didn't work - what now?
I kid you not, but some people scan the codes in a shop without actually buying the paper. That has happened to me. Usually Sun Superdays app just automatically gives you an additional code to replace it, but if it doesn't retain your physical paper and get in contact with them. They will give you a new code. I've also heard of people ripping the code out and not buying the paper... I always try select a paper from the bottom of the pile and if it looks like it is read I quickly check the page still remains in.
My experience of booking Sun Superdays in 2023
So far so good. I booked Chessington World of Adventures, logged on half an hour earlier on the app, let it run on the background. At 11 I was put into a virtual queue, queued on the app for 20 minutes and could then click to booking form. The experience was very easy and stress-free. I got tickets for a June weekend, and almost all days were still available when I booked.
Best tips for Sun Superdays - Conclusion
The best way to secure two free tickets with Sun Superdays is to buy The Sun paper on nine consecutive days, starting when the colletion opens and ensuring you book on the first booking day. Make sure you log in before the booking opens, as weekends and school holidays run out one the first day. Don't try to beat the system - best bet is to book two tickets per household and use various other means to get additional tickets, such as Kellogg's 2-4-1 deals or Tesco Clubcard Boosts.
And a helpful tip, there is The Sun Superdays Facebook group which has been really helpful for tips, and also to keep up to date with any changes and the dates, and has lots of lovely helpful people there. It may be worth joining if you have any more questions after reading this post!
Photos are from some of the various places I have booked tickets using The Sun Superdays - see how many you recognise! You might also like this post about how to do Legoland Windsor on a budget and this post about Chessington on a budget!
Have you used Sun Superdays tickets? How did it go?