Slay it right: Tips to make your concert experience worth it
Viagogo, for instance, will ensure the reseller gives you an authorisation statement to prove they have sold the ticket to you.
Concerts have always been big business, but with people traversing oceans for their favourite artistes, music shows have become a key draw for travellers. And 2023 is clearly the year of the stadium concert. After three years of watching everything online, music lovers are finally catching Taylor Swift, Beyonce, Backstreet Boys, Harry Styles, Ed Sheeran, TroyBoi, Coldplay and Madonna live in action. But festival logistics can wear you out. Here’s a quick guide to a painless experience.
Cop that ticket
Ticketmaster is the common partner for US artists while Viagogo is the biggest resale site. Start your search on the artist’s official website for authentic tickets. Closer to show dates, you are most likely to purchase from a reseller and most marquee platforms validate these passes.
Viagogo, for instance, will ensure the reseller gives you an authorisation statement to prove they have sold the ticket to you. If you don’t get your physical copy on time, you will get a comparable one emailed to you. Make sure to print it—many people were denied entry to Beyonce and Harry Style’s recent shows because the tickets didn’t load on the app or only printed versions were allowed. When printed ones are the only option, have them sent to the hotel you’re staying at because they are usually dispatched a few days before the event.
Should one go VIP?
Floor VIP can be worth it because despite being close to the stage, it gives you enough breathing room to move around unlike the general floor where you are going to get lost behind someone who is live-streaming the gig for their friends. Sometimes a VIP pass just comprises a fancy lanyard, a couple of postcards and a special check-in counter, while at other times you get access to soundcheck, which is a private session for a special floor section. VIP floor passes often have numbers on them, and you can find your place in the queue, or walk straight in.
Try and book a hotel that’s within walking distance to the stadium.
If not, prepare to take public transport. Otherwise, you will find yourself on the pavement at 10 pm looking for a taxi or dodging throngs of drunk, elated people falling over themselves post-event. Big stadium concerts almost always start on time, so if the capacity is 10,000 or more, you need to prepare to line up in advance, think at least two hours.
What is a barricade?
It is quite simply the first line of the floor where your chest is squished against the barricade. There are often two barricades—one for VIPs near the stage and another dividing the deeper floor section. It’s not recommended if you are even slightly claustrophobic.