World Book Day 2024

Today is March 7 – a day recognised by children as World Book Day; distinguished by fancy dress and fun activities.

The annual celebration sees a special selection of £1 books gifted to kids and families via bookshops and major retailers. This presents an opportunity for retailers, brands, and licensees to enhance sales and explore new touchpoints.


World Book Day was created by UNESCO on 23rd April 1995 as a worldwide celebration of authors and reading; the ultimate goal has always been to ensure that every child has access to books. Half a million children in England don’t own a single book – many of which are from low income families. This highlights the need for World Book Day at this point in time.

The first World Book Day in the UK and Ireland took place in 1998 and was launched by Prime Minister Tony Blair at the Globe Theatre in London. Schoolchildren were encouraged to dress as their favourite book character and were given a special £1 World Book Day Book Token (€1.50 in Ireland) which could be redeemed against any book in any UK bookshop.


The goal for World Book Day 2024 is to bring the joy of reading to more children and celebrate their choices, urging everyone to “Read Their Way!” A substantial 105,000 books are being distributed through various supporters and partners, reaching disadvantaged communities through BookTrust’s network of 6,000 local organisations. 24,000 books will be distributed through prisons to help families read together, while 43,750 books will be shared across 17 National Literacy Hubs and over 100 football clubs to support book ownership in areas of high deprivation and low literacy.

Brand involvement


McDonald’s is contributing to World Book Day by offering £1/€1.50 book tokens with World Book Day-themed Happy Meals. Collaborating with Sanrio Company, Ltd, these meals include either one of 10 Mr. Men Little Miss plush toys or one of four books in the Mr. Men Little Miss ‘Discover You’ series.


Yoto is celebrating World Book Day 2024 by providing a selection of audiobooks for free via the Yoto App, including chapters from children’s classics. They are also donating £1 from the sale of specific Yoto Cards during the World Book Day period to support the mission of World Book Day.


Costume specialist Rubies, known for their licenses from Wizarding World to the Wizard of Oz, has partnered with over 30 influencers to raise awareness for World Book Day. They are collaborating with retailers to support their campaign, emphasising the intrinsic connection between the worlds of books and dress-up.


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