About First Minister's Questions (FMQs)
FMQs happens on Thursdays, from 12pm to 12.45pm. It doesn't happen during recess. During FMQs, the First Minister answers questions from opposition party leaders and other MSPs.
It's the most popular session of Parliament to watch, and demand for tickets is high.
Follow these steps to book tickets:
How to book FMQs tickets
- Make sure you call us 7 days before you intend to visit. Phone lines are only open for FMQs bookings on Thursdays, from 9am to 10am. Call us as close to 9am as possible
You can call 0131 348 5200 or freephone 0800 092 7600. BSL users can use Contact Scotland BSL.
If you live in Scotland, you can also request tickets through one of your 8 MSPs. Full names and home address information is still required if you book through them.
School groups have a different process for booking FMQs tickets.
- Make sure your whole group has identification on them before arriving. This should show your full names
- Arrive in plenty of time to go through the airport-style security check – we recommend arriving at 10.40am
- Collect tickets from the visitor information desk. Only named people who've booked, and have identification on them, can collect tickets
- Hand over all electronic devices to staff, who will lock them away securely for the duration of FMQs
- Follow the visitor behaviour policy. Anyone in breach of this code may be excluded from future visits
Visitor Behaviour Policy
Please remember that this is a working parliamentary building and, as such, you are expected to behave as set out in this policy. We reserve the right to remove visitors who breach this policy and apply a period of exclusion from our public galleries and parliamentary business.
For all visits, please:
- follow all instructions from parliament staff, including any requests to bring ID with you
- do not leave your bags and personal belongings unattended
- do not smoke in the building
- do not eat or drink, except in the restaurants
- if given one, wear your visitor lanyard and pass at all times. Return it when asked or when leaving
- collect any items retained by security as you leave
- note that protests are not allowed inside the building. Banners, flags and political slogans are forbidden
The Parliament’s Standing Orders cover public access to parliamentary business. They allow the Presiding Officer to set reasonable conditions, and exclusions if these are not met.
For visits to see parliamentary business, please:
- enter, sit in and leave the galleries quietly and as requested by parliamentary staff
- switch all electronic devices off, and secure them as instructed by parliamentary staff
- do not cause a distraction or disruption to parliamentary business. If there is a disruption in the Chamber, the Presiding Officer can ask visitors to leave
- note that people who wilfully disrupt may face a period of exclusion from future visits
- do not applaud or shout out during meetings
- do not take photos, videos or recordings during meetings
- obtain prior permission to paint, sketch or draw
- follow the instructions of parliamentary staff on when and where to sit and to leave. For First Minister’s Questions, this includes remaining seated for the entire session. If you need to leave before the session ends, please speak to the nearest member of Parliament staff
Other ways to watch FMQs
Plan your visit
- Hearing loops are installed in the Debating Chamber. This connects to hearing aids which have a 'T-Switch'
- If you need a British Sign Language interpreter or other support, please contact us with as much notice as possible
- Wheelchairs are available and the public gallery of the Debating Chamber has wheelchair spaces
Days and times
12pm to 12.45pm
Other parliamentary business
Tuesday to Thursday
Besides FMQs, there are many other debates that take place in the Debating Chamber throughout the week. You are welcome to attend any of them.
Tuesday to Thursday
Outside of the Debating Chamber, there are other, smaller meetings of MSPs that take place in committee meeting rooms. These are also open to the public.