Concert season is approaching, and if you have tickets for a show, you’re probably already eagerly waiting for its night to arrive. Concerts make for a super fun experience whether you’re going by yourself or with a group of your best friends, but there are some things to be considered if you want to make the most out of the event. I have been to over 50 concerts, so as a veteran on the subject, I am here to share with you some of the best tips that I have accumulated over the years so that you can avoid mistakes that I made way back when.
Photo: Yvette de Wit on Unsplash
1. Bring earplugs!
This one seems obvious, but alas, that is not always the case. I rarely ever see people with earplugs at shows, but their presence is essential. It might not seem that loud when you’re screaming all the words to your favorite songs, but when your ears are ringing afterwards, you might regret your neglect. Also, if you can help it, don’t stand near the speakers – even prepared with earplugs, your whole body will feel the volume of those awesome amps.
2. Eat beforehand!
If you have the time and opportunity, it’s probably a good idea to eat before you go. It might seem smart to get dinner at the show itself, but the lines and the prices might dissuade you once you’re there; you might also be disappointed by the quality, but that’s a whole other story. Most venues will also let you in with snacks if you think you might get hungry.
3. Buy merch at the end of the show!
Everyone flocks to merch at the beginning because they see the merch stand on their way in. If you go at the end of the show, it’s highly likely that your favorite piece of merch will still be there waiting for you, and you’ll have avoided the long lines and awkwardly having to hold onto any souvenir that isn’t a t-shirt for the entire performance.
4. Arrive in time to see the opening act!
People often skip the opener because they’ve never heard of the bands playing in them and only have interest in seeing the headliners. However, when these musicians are picked the opening act, they’re selected with the genre of the headliner in mind – so you might find a new favorite band! Even if you don’t love them immediately, it’s good to support small acts.
5. Bring water!
Most venues will let you in with an unopened water bottle, but if that’s not the case for the location you’re going to, you’ll probably want to buy one once you get there. You might not think that you’ll need it, but singing along with your favorite artist might make you a little more parched than you anticipate.
6. Pick the sides!
Side views are better than you might think. Whether your show is standing room or seated, the side is generally a great option. Plus, you’ll likely get a closer spot because most people want to stand in the middle.
7. Make friends with the staff!
Talking to the staff not only helps to pass the time but can also help to get you insider information, such as the set times or the anticipated end time. Be friendly!
8. Enjoy the moment!
Don’t worry about looking foolish as you sing and dance your heart out. No one will be watching you or care about how goofy you might appear – you’re all there for the same reason: to see a phenomenal performance and have a good time. You probably spent quite a bit of money to be there, so make it worth it!
These are some of the best bits of advice that I have gathered, and I hope that they help you in all your concert adventures. Happy concert planning!
Stephanie is an undergraduate student at Washington College. She is an English major with minors in Journalism, Editing, and Publishing, and Justice, Law, and Society. When not writing, you can find her either at a concert, reading a book, or petting a cat.