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Getting the Most Out of Your Next Concert

Let's have some fun!

There are so many shows - Make it one of the best experiences

Turn your research into a reality.

If you are anything like me, you are already thinking ahead to the next concert you’ll be going to see. Maybe you’ve already bought your tickets months ahead of time. Maybe you’re waiting until the very last minute to get tickets. Either way, you probably want to have as much fun as possible while you’re at the show.

It doesn’t matter what kind of music it is: Pop, punk, country, or metal, there are a few rules that you can stick to in order to get the most out of your next show. Here are a few things that I’ve learned over the years. Hopefully, these tips will help you to enjoy the next concert that you go see a little bit more.

Get there early.

One of my favorite shows of all-time was AC/DC. I saw them play in Albany back in 2001. I wasn’t even a huge fan of their music, but the show and the experience were both amazing. Putting the on-stage theatrics aside for a moment, one of the big reasons why I had so much fun at this show was that we got there ridiculously early. In fact, we hung out in the parking garage for about an hour before we even went into the show, just in time to see the opening band (Buck Cherry) come on stage. It made for a more relaxed experience and allowed us to just enjoy ourselves and have fun—and not have to worry about traffic, parking, and navigating through the masses of humanity that were attending.

Buy a parking pass online.

With that same thought in mind, buying a parking pass online can help you to avoid the hassle of finding a parking pass. I wish I had known about this sooner, honestly. When you buy a parking pass online from one of the major third-party ticket sites, the vast majority of venues count that spot as reserved. That means that no matter how busy a show is, you will have a spot waiting for you. That doesn’t mean that traffic will not slow you down, but it does mean that you won’t have to drive around for hours to find a spot. As an added bonus, parking tends to be a lot cheaper when you use this method, too.

Know the arena.

Many years ago, I saw Bob Dylan play at a partially outdoors arena. My seat was toward the back of the arena, just in front of the standing room only section, which was out in the open. My seats were right on the edge of the enclosure. If it had rained, I would have gotten soaked, but the people sitting a few rows in front of me would have been completely dry. This could have been a total disaster. Luckily, it wasn’t.

Knowing the facts about the arena that you are going to and how it’s situated will help you to enjoy yourself a lot more. You will know where your seats are, what kinds of items you’ll need to bring with you in order to protect yourself from the elements, and what the quickest ways to your seats and then back to your ride are. Spending 15 minutes planning ahead can help you to be more prepared so that you don’t have to worry about a little bit of rain or finding the nearest restroom.

Skip the lines.

This one will be a controversial one, but I’m going to go out on a limb and say it anyway: Skip the lines for merchandise. Yes, getting a band T-shirt at the show is awesome. You can wear it the next day and everyone will ask you where you got it. You’ll say, “at the concert last night!” It will be awesome. But, bear with me for a moment. Odds are, you’re going to spend at least 30 to 45 minutes standing in line and you’re going to pay at least $40 bucks for that tee. If you’re cool with that, fine. Go for it. But, that’s time that you could be hanging out with your friends listening to the band. That’s money that could be spent on that same T-shirt the next day online for half the price. It can be fun to get the band’s merch at the show, but I learned that I saved a lot of stress for myself if I agreed not to do stand in that line before I headed out the door for a show.

Stay safe.

A concert is fun, but let common sense prevail, please! If you have any medical conditions, bring any equipment or medication you might need with you and tell one of your group members everything that they need to know—just in case. Hopefully it won’t ever be information that’s needed, but you want to be safe. If you come to a show as a group, make sure your group stays together. Don’t let a friend wander off with someone you don’t know.

If it’s an outdoor show, be sure that you are staying hydrated and are protecting yourself from the sun. This is especially true for festival-type events. When you’re outside watching bands play all day, it can be really easy to forget about the little things that will keep you healthy. But sunstroke or dehydration can turn an awesome event into a trip to the emergency room. I’ve seen this happen before, it is never fun. Don’t let it happen to you.

Finally, be aware of exits and escape routes. Again, this is something that you’ll hopefully never need to worry about, but with the world the way that it is today, you want to have this information stored in the back of your head.

Concerts are meant to be fun, so make sure that you follow these steps in order to get the most out of your next experience. These little things don’t take much extra effort, and they will seriously reduce your stress levels once the main event kicks off because you will be prepared.

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