Concerts in the PH Are Warzones: Here’s What We Need to Make Them Better
Jan 24, 2024   •   Kyzia Maramara
8List.ph is published by ID8, Inc.
Jan 24, 2024   •   Kyzia Maramara
“We’ve seen some traffic, but I think you have the number one in the world,” said Coldplay frontman Chris Martin during the Philippine leg of their Music of the Spheres tour last weekend. Horrendous traffic is just one of the handful of reasons why attending concerts in the Philippines proves to be such a challenge for Pinoys everywhere. But it’s not too late to turn things around. Here are some ways concert organizers can improve the local concert experience:
The good news: Your favorite artists are coming to town. Bad news? You and hundreds of thousands of other fans are all in the same boat trying to secure tickets. Cue websites crashing, invalid pre-sale codes, and a confusing ticketing page and it’s enough to make any fan wail in disappointment. We live in a digital age. It’s not too much to ask for concert organizers to ensure their websites can withstand an influx of users and make ticketing smoother for everyone involved.
Wanderland Music and Arts Festival understood the assignment when they gave concertgoers special hotel and accommodation rates from their official hotel partners. They knew fans from all over the country would flock to Metro Manila to see their faves play, so why not make their stay as comfortable as possible? Now that concerts are split between Manila and Bulacan, organizers providing accommodation options and recommendations will show how much they truly care for Pinoy fans.
Commuting isn’t such a hassle when concerts are held in Pasay and Cubao. But anyone who’s ever gone to a concert at the Philippine Arena in Bulacan will attest that it’s a different beast. Although some concert organizers provide paid shuttle bus services, it still wouldn’t be able to cover the thousands of concertgoers. Some fans suggest extending service hours for LRT and MRT and adding bus routes to make sure all attendees are covered.
@kesayuuuh Are you going to watch Black Pink’s concert this weekend? This is for you! Yes, it’s possible! Tiwala lang kay Google Maps or Waze! #philippinearena #concert #parkinglot #philippinearenaentrance #blackpink #blackpinkinyourarea ♬ Aesthetic – Gaspar
Commuters aren’t the only ones who find attending concerts a hassle when it’s outside Metro Manila. Even those with private cars have challenges to face. The horrible traffic, for one, is a nightmare. Once at Philippine Arena, drivers have to face parking woes including, but not limited to, parking traffic jams. Pinoys suggest concert organizers partner with malls or build multi-level parking for a comfortable experience.
During Bruno Mars’ concert last June, Maine Mendoza took to social media to air her disappointment at only catching the last two songs. The actress and TV host blamed the “hassle entry and exit points” at the Philippine Arena. Her experience mirrors a thousand others. K-pop fans have even complained about confusing queuing systems that required them to stand in line for over two hours in the heat.
Sold-out crowd for the historic return of SEVENTEEN in the Philippines, making them the first KPOP act to stage a stadium show in the country.
— Manila Concert Scene (@manilaconcerts) January 13, 2024
South Korean boy group SEVENTEEN’s concert at the Philippine Arena in early January 2024 yielded interesting results. For one, the floor was packed. Although fans were joking about feeling like sardines in a can, the situation could’ve escalated into a stampede. At one point, a whole row of seats even collapsed:
HAHAHAHA TAENA DI MAN UMABOT NG AJU NICE GUMUHO pic.twitter.com/ylwsUMkNhU
— LJ | ALE REVIEW ATM (@UaenCarat0912) January 13, 2024
Foreign fans who illegally brought cameras to the venue got into a brawl with Pinoy fans:
hello po na inspire po ako ng malutong na tarantado ka ah na i-edit in yung 32k~ carats sa 9th aju nice na ito~
clip credits: @everywonwoo / @kwoniechiewa
marites credits: @hhhongggshua
katipunera credits: @/atebravecarat https://t.co/abTix2xx8m pic.twitter.com/SOM9pjHZKH
— stream WAIT by Dino (@heytamagotchi) January 16, 2024
Beefing up the security and safety of all concertgoers is the bare minimum for all concert organizers.
Mahina data signal sa moa arena pero may wifi naman sa loob hahaha
— M | CBML era (@bubbledonbelle) April 19, 2023
It’s a nightmare to be stuck in a venue with 55,000 other concert attendees and realize you don’t have the means to contact your friends or family. Add a weak mobile signal to the mix and it’s a recipe for disaster. If airports can have free Wi-Fi, why can’t concert halls provide the same?
@8list.ph Born Pink Manila soundcheck happening now!!! #bornpinkworldtour #BornPinkManila #bornpinkmanilabulacan #blackpink #fyp #concert ♬ original sound – J A N I O
Hotdogs and overpriced water are concertgoers’ meals of choice (because they don’t have a choice anyway), but this isn’t even an option at some venues. Attendees are sometimes forced to either go outside to forage for food at a distant fast-food chain or risk standing in line for at least an hour. At the Philippine Arena, concertgoers have also voiced their disappointment that there aren’t enough air-conditioned waiting areas.
It’s no wonder why Pinoy concertgoers have always flocked to social media to voice out their disappointment after concerts. They paid good money to secure seats and have an epic night with their favorite artists. Standing in line for hours, figuring out queuing lines, and suffering at the hands of foreigners shouldn’t be part of the deal. Hopefully, concert organizers can do better in the future.
Kyzia spends most of her time capturing the world around her through photos, paragraphs, and playlists. She is constantly on the hunt for the perfect chocolate chip cookie, and a great paperback thriller to pair with it.
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