When are details of the programme available?

The 2019 Book Festival programme will be launched in early June 2019. 

When do tickets go on sale?

Tickets for the 2019 Book Festival will go on sale in late June 2019.

How long do events last?

The majority of events last one hour. Occasionally some events may be 75 or 90 minutes or even up to 2 hours long and events for very young children are often less than an hour. Check the end time of events when booking - each is detailed on the online event listing and clearly stated in the brochure if not one hour long.

What time will author X be signing?

Most authors sign directly after their event. There are white boards up outside The Bookshop, the Baillie Gifford Children's Bookshop and the Signing Tents in Charlotte Square Gardens and on George Street which have details of the day's signings on them.

Where are the venues?

Edinburgh International Book Festival is unique as all our venues are in one place: the tented Book Festival Village in the centre of Edinburgh, just off the west end of Princes Street. The tented village is situated in Charlotte Square Gardens (Postcode EH2 4DR) and extends onto the west end of George Street. All events take place in these venues unless otherwise stated clearly in the event listing and on your ticket. 

When is the Book Festival Village open?

We are open every day during the Festival from 9.30am until 1am.
The 2019 Festival runs from 10 - 26 August.

Are there any events for children?

Yes, we have a whole programme of events entirely dedicated to children and their parents/carers. It features readings, panel discussions, creative workshops, demonstrations, storytelling and activities of every type to keep children absorbed and entertained. Use our event search to find events for children.

There are plenty of places to eat and drink in the Book Festival Village and a whole bookshop dedicated to children's literature: the Baillie Gifford Children's Bookshop.

Is anything free?

Yes - lots!

The free activities available during the Book Festival can be found using the event search facility on our website or in the brochure - use the category menu and search 'Free events'. They include:

  • Daily Amnesty International Imprisoned Writers events offer a selection of short readings by or about writers incarcerated or persecuted for their beliefs and words. Readings are by a selection of Festival authors.
  • A fun Activity Corner for children is located in the Baillie Gifford Story Box and open daily from 11.00am to 4.30pm - just drop in.
  • Daily free events for children are a feature of the Baillie Gifford Children's Programme.
  • ​Daily free drop-in events for all ages take place in The Bookshop on George Street.
  • Ten at Ten is a free ten minute reading from one our writers, every day at 10am.
  • Unbound, every evening from Sunday 12 August, which features a mix of debut and renowned writers who each try something a little different.

There is no admission fee to the Book Festival Village - entry is FREE for everyone.

Do you admit latecomers?

Out of consideration to audience members and authors, we do not admit latecomers once the doors have been closed to an event, or give refunds on latecomers' tickets. However, we understand people with young children may need to leave an event unexpectedly and we will help you exit as discreetly as possible, and get you back in again should you want to return. Please be sure to allow enough time to pick up your tickets from the Box Office (if they haven't already been posted to you) and walk across the Festival Village to the venue before the event start time.

Who runs your bookshops?

We do! Our on-site bookshops are owned and operated by us which means all profit from our independent booksales operation is ploughed directly back into the Festival itself. Any purchase you make on site, however small, is a most valuable contribution to the ongoing development of the Edinburgh International Book Festival.

How long has the Festival been running?

The very first Book Festival was held in Charlotte Square Gardens in 1983.

Can I bring a picnic onto site?

Yes! The Book Festival Village is a great place to sit, relax and eat with friends and family and we provide drinking water taps in Charlotte Square Gardens for you to top up your water bottles.

Can I bring my dog onto site?

We only allow assistance dogs on site.

Who is the statue in the middle of the garden?

Prince Albert.

Can I get online?

During the Festival there is free wifi access in the Book Festival Village, to use it simply follow the instructions and login.

Edinburgh in general is very well covered by the main mobile networks, with a strong 4G signal in most parts of the city centre and beyond, and excellent 3G coverage as well for all your festival app needs.

There is now also a free wifi service across the city centre. Simply turn on wifi on your mobile device, select EdiFreeWifi from your list of available networks and then log-in using your basic information. More information on this can be found on the Edinburgh Free Wifi website

What happens to the books after the Festival?

All the books in our bookshops are supplied to us on a sale or return basis and any left at the end of the Festival will therefore be returned to the publishers. Books given to us by publishers and other organisations for work use are donated to charities after the Festival is over.

How can I work at the Festival?

We employ short-term temporary staff during the Festival itself in August and some long-term contractual staff from May through to September most years. Recruitment and interviews usually take place from April onwards. We also employ permanent staff who work all year round. When we are recruiting staff it will be advertised on the Jobs page of this website and we also publicise new vacancies via Facebook and Twitter.