This is a tough one for me to share because it's one of my most useful little secrets, but here goes... don't ever ever ever buy tickets when they go on sale. I know to live by this but didn't actually do it this time because I wanted the tickets in hand for a Christmas gift... and of course I lived to regret it. Wait until the week of the show to buy your tickets and you'll score some great seats at face value right on Ticketmaster. Once the tour gets to the actual venue and sets up the stage, many times they'll realize they have room for an extra row or two of seats near the stage. So what happens? They throw those tickets right up on Ticketmaster and someone who waited until the last minute to buy tickets ends up with great seats at face value. Win win. Also? Tickets that an artist sets aside for friends and family, crew members, etc... a few days before the show, whatever isn't being used up by people associated with the tour are put back up for sale online. I've scored 2nd and 3rd row seats 2 days before a concert this way before as well as pit tickets. I even checked this out with One Direction tickets before our show (and a couple other shows on the east coast) and sure enough, if I'd waited until the last minute, we'd have scored a pretty great view for face value. I know it's a risk and I know it's scary to wait... but I've always found the reward is worth the risk!
I don't mean to sound like I don't want people to use their manners because I obviously do. But at concerts where there's 50,000 other people, sometimes you've just gotta throw out some of the rules you've been taught your whole life and look out for yourself. The merchandise stand? You can wait forever to buy a t-shirt... seriously, the crowds around a merch table and the wait is a little ridiculous. If you're walking by and notice an opening right up front, go ahead and sneak yourself right up in there. You'll have your souvenir in no time and be on your merry way. You might look at that as rude and cutting in line, I like to look at it as being efficient with my time. This also comes into play during the concert itself. My best friend and I go to a lot of concerts together and we both know that once we're there, it's every man for himself. If you're on the floor 30 rows back and you see an open seat 5 rows ahead, you walk right up there and act like you belong there. Next thing you know you'll see another open seat another few rows ahead of you and before you know it, you'll be at the stage. I'm not saying to steal someone's seat or block their view (both big no-no's) but if there's an opening, you may as well use it to your advantage. The key here is to act like you belong there... don't act suspicious, don't wait for your friends... just go. I've watched many a concert from the very front of the venue just by doing this.
Unfortunately, I had to teach Emily this immediately at our show. You've got to protect your space and if it takes throwing a couple of elbows to get it done, then so be it. Be assertive... if you're not, you'll end up hearing some pretty great music while staring at the back of someone's head all night long. We all want to sing and dance and have plenty of room to do just that... but if someone next to you is going to the extreme, which they usually do at a concert, protect your spot. At our concert, a couple people next to Emily kept bumping into her and (unintentionally) pushing her back so they could have a better view for their pictures. They kept nudging and (of course) each time they did she stepped back a bit. I politely asked them to stop to no avail and I certainly wasn't going to let my daughter miss out on this concert so I showed her how to stand firm and push back a bit. Of course you don't want to encourage confrontation but you do need to protect your own space... Emily did just that and those girls never bothered her again.
Nothing bugs me more than watching someone stand there quietly at a show or checking their phone. You're at a concert, you need to experience it! The artist says "scream!" then you scream... sing along to the music, dance to the beat! Don't spend your time being quiet... let loose and have some fun! You might be worried that you look and sound a little foolish but I promise, no one is watching you... they paid their money to watch whoever's up on that stage, not who's in the seats!
Another huge pet peeve of mine when it comes to concerts or a sporting event. You've paid the money and spent your time getting there... now enjoy the full experience! Sure you may have to wait a few extra minutes to get out of the venue or parking lot but it's all part of the experience. The end of an event, whether it be a concert or sporting event, is often times some of the best moments of the whole evening... don't miss out because you wanted to beat a few minutes of traffic!
Ok, my fellow concert-goers... those are some of my tips and tricks to pass along! What are some of yours that you'd add to the list?