Kpop concerts are definitely a very unique and surreal experience. They differ quite a bit from American music concerts from, of course, the language to the performances themselves, yet these differences are what makes the experience so memorable. Personally, I attended my first Kpop concert for BTS back in April. Here are some general tips I have from buying the tickets to even after the concert.
Step 1: Buying the tickets.
This is probably the most difficult part, considering that ticket scalpers are always one step ahead. Kpop concert tickets in America are normally sold through an entertainment company. The more popular ones are Powerhouse Live and SubKulture. The best advice I could give would be to connect with these companies through social media as soon as one can. They often provide accurate timings of when the tickets will go on sale, the venue, and other information that the artist will not reveal. In addition, these entertainment companies will often sell tickets on their own site, which can be easier to attain since sites like TicketMaster will be bombarded with sales.
And what happens if you don’t get the tickets? Don’t worry, not all hope is lost. I recommend scouting out Facebook sell and trade groups for the concert. It is best to search for these tickets at least a month after they have been sold out on TicketMaster. Initially, people reselling tickets jack up the prices, because they know people will pay up to double, sometimes even triple the price. After a couple months roll by and their overpriced tickets still have not sold, they tend to lower the prices. If you live close by to the venue, buying tickets a day before is also an option. Though risky, often tickets are cheapest at this time.
Step 2: Preparing and packing for the concert.
Kpop concerts tend to have two main sections: the pit and the reserved seats. The pit requires a lot more preparation than the reserved seats, but the experience is often more surreal. In order to prepare for the pit, make sure to arrive early so as to secure a good view. One must also always be checking the venue’s and entertainment companies’ social media because of possible last minute changes. Also, if you’re short, do yourself a favor and buy platform shoes. Not being able to see will ruin your night much more than being slightly uncomfortable. Stay hydrated as well. I’ve heard too many horror stories of people passing out or puking in the pit. As for reserved seating, you can basically take it slow. One does not have to come early, make any changes to one’s outfit, nor have too worry too much about what to eat or drink.
Light sticks are one of the most distinctive features of Kpop concerts. Some feel that is a must in order to attend the concert while others believe it is not needed. My own take is that it will make your experience better, but not by much. Of course being able to wave your light stick to the beat of the music and being part of the light ocean is great, but spending sometimes up to 100 dollars just to participate somewhat puts a damper on things. I didn’t buy a light stick for my BTS concert and I feel as if my experience was great as well.
Step 3: During and after the Concert
During the concert, is pretty simple. Just enjoy the music. I recommend taking videos and photos here and there (especially if you have a really good view), but try not to get too preoccupied with recording the moment rather than living in it. One can always go on YouTube to watch the recordings, but how often can one see the performance live?
Once the concert is finished, try to scope out people selling merchandise. Often times people make their own custom merchandise that they sell before and after the concert. Afterward, prices are the best; in fact, I bought a tee shirt just for 5 dollars when they were selling if for 25 dollars before!
Post-concert sadness will hit pretty soon. Rather than watching the videos over and over and moping about it, I recommend taking a small break. Don’t watch the videos and don’t listen to their music. After the sadness leaves, one will be able to reflect on the experience much more favorably.
A K-Pop concert is like no other. Their uniqueness leaves many attendees often frazzled on how to go about it. These tips, however, will ensure a much more enjoyable concert experience.