Filipinos spending more on concerts, flying overseas to see fave artists

By: Tyrone Jasper C. Piad - Philippine Daily Inquirer | January 07,2024 - 07:38 PM

File photo of Taylor Swift who will perform in a concert in Singapore in March 2024.

POP PHENOMENON Asian Swifties eagerly await the Singapore leg of Taylor Swift’s “The Eras Tour” in March. —AFP

MANILA,  Philippines  – Marc Aldrin Bernardino will soon be singing the words to the fan favorite “All Too Well” along with fellow Swifties when he attends Grammy-winning pop icon Taylor Swift’s “The Eras Tour” concert at National Stadium in Singapore.

The chart-topping breakup power ballad, hailed as one of the best songs of the 2010s by pop culture magazine Rolling Stone, has resonated deeply with the fans for its evocative lyrics and melody. “It’s a storytelling masterpiece, raw and real. It’s gonna be a pure, cathartic experience seeing her perform this song live!” Bernardino tells the Inquirer.

This is why the 27-year-old human resource manager did not miss the chance to buy concert tickets even if it meant flying to another country. Unfortunately, the singer-songwriter who had penned hundreds of songs won’t stop in the Philippines for her world tour, leaving many Filipino Swifties heartbroken.

“Snagging those tickets was like a gladiatorial arena! Knowing that Singapore is the only stop in Southeast Asia, I know for sure that it’s gonna be a battle of nations just to secure a ticket,” he recalls.

Bernardino, who has been a fan since he was only 12, will watch the sold-out concert on March 7 with his partner who also shares his “Taylor-fueled obsession.” After buying the tickets, he booked flights and accommodation for their four-day stay in Singapore.

Chris Martin of British band Coldplay performingat SM Mall of Asia open grounds in 2017.

ROCK STAR Chris Martin of British band Coldplay performing at SM Mall of Asia open grounds in 2017. —RICHARD A. REYES

A rising trend

Fans flying overseas to see their favorite artists perform live in concerts is becoming a thing among Filipinos. The latest Green Shoots Radar study by digital payments solution Visa reveals that Filipinos belong to the top five in Asia-Pacific region when it comes to penchant for traveling for concerts.

In the past 12 months, 38 percent of surveyed Filipinos have attended concerts locally or overseas. The Philippines is just right behind the India with 45 percent; Vietnam, 41 percent; and Indonesia, 40 percent.

The latest Green Shoots Radar study also notes that 37 percent of Filipinos flying overseas for a music concert planned the trip specifically for the event.

South Korea and Singapore are the top destinations for the concertgoers, according to Visa.

This year, other popular artists coming to Singapore are British rock band Coldplay, “Shape of You” songwriter Ed Sheeran and former The Voice contestant Melanie Martinez. In South Korea, Guns N’ Roses lead guitarist Slash will delight his fans in March.

“The resurgence in travel and notably for live music events is a positive trend. Cards play a vital role in the consumer cross-border journey, providing a safe and secure way to purchase tickets with a seamless contactless payment experience,” says Jeff Navarro, Visa country manager for the Philippines. “Consumers can also buy event merchandise, and support their travel and shopping needs with cards,” he adds.

Ed Sheeran on NBC’s “Today” show at Rockefeller Center in New York on June 6, 2023.

GENRE-CROSSING Ed Sheeran on NBC’s “Today” show at Rockefeller Center in New York on June 6, 2023. —REUTERS

Going live

This trend of traveling for concerts is expected to continue this 2024. Other popular live events include theater and sporting events, Visa notes.

Recently, the touring cast of Tony-winning musical Hamilton staged a production in the Philippines. The two-act play by composer and actor Lin Manuel Miranda featured homegrown talent Rachel Ann Go, who reprised her role as Elizabeth Schuyler, wife of American founding father Alexander Hamilton.

Soon, another popular musical piece synonymous to world-renowned singer-actress Lea Salonga, Miss Saigon, will make its way back to the country.

The Philippines also recently hosted the Fiba (International Basketball Federation) Basketball World Cup 2023, drawing in crowds from all over the world. By the end of the tournament, Gilas Pilipinas climbed to 38th rank in the world from 40th place previously.

“The postpandemic period has seen a resurgence [of] in-person live events, with people increasingly traveling to attend them. This trend is expected to persist in 2024, driven by popular acts performing in the region,” Visa says. This finding is parallel to Visa’s earlier study, which sees Filipinos excited to board flights for leisure trips.

Pinoy travelers usually visit Asia-Pacific countries like Japan, Singapore and Hong Kong where popular tourist spots like Mount Fuji, Marina Bay Sands and Disneyland are situated, the study says.

Revenge travel

“We continue to see outbound travel bouncing back in the country to prepandemic levels, where Filipinos have taken on average two leisure trips in the last 12 months,” Navarro says.

Meanwhile, super app operator Grab’s Southeast Asia Travel Insights 2023 report notes that seven in 10 Filipinos would like to travel abroad this year. Some 82 percent have even said they want to have more than two trips, signaling the recovery of travel demand after years of strict COVID-19 lockdowns.

About 66 percent of the respondents will travel with families and relatives. “This is no surprise given the close-knit nature of Filipino families—a hallmark of the country’s culture,” Grab explains. The study—which surveyed 2,000 respondents—found out that seven out of 10 Filipinos take a vacation in neighboring countries such as Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia and Vietnam. Outside the region, Filipinos love visiting Japan, South Korea and the United States.


Rio police investigate Taylor Swift concert organizers after fan’s death

Cebuano storms internet after flexing all his concert tickets

Sandara Park ‘sad, disappointed’ after Cebu City concert was postponed

Kiana Ledé brings Grudges, the world tour to Manila as part of the Insignia Concert series on December 6, 2023

Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Your subscription has been successful.

Subscribe to our daily newsletter

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.

Read Next

Disclaimer: The comments uploaded on this site do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of management and owner of Cebudailynews. We reserve the right to exclude comments that we deem to be inconsistent with our editorial standards.

TAGS: concerts, Filipinos, Travel

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.