Newest Upgraded Points Study Reveals Real Cost of Concert Tourism Across 50 Major U.S. Cities

AUSTIN, Texas, May 14, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — Upgraded Points recently analyzed the costs of traveling for a weekend to see a concert in 50 U.S. cities along major tour stops for the summer 2024 concert season. Headlined by major acts like Taylor Swift, Drake, and Olivia Rodrigo, fans are now converting concert experiences into mini-vacations, or “gig tripping.” Exploring the financial details of concert tickets, flights, accommodations, and refreshments in each city, the study results sing a clear tune about what music lovers can expect to spend at each tour location.

“From Taylor Swift’s record-breaking tour to emerging indie acts, the enthusiasm for live music has transformed into a travel phenomenon,” said Keri Stooksbury, editor-in-chief at Upgraded Points. “We look at the exact costs of concert tourism, spotlighting the cities where fans won’t break the bank.”

Study Methodology

The study first calculated eight different cost factors across America’s 50 largest cities – from airfare to meals, Airbnb expenses, swag, and refreshments. Each cost represents the average tourist’s expenses for the weekend: arriving on Friday night and departing on Sunday morning. Concert ticket and parking prices were derived from the average resale costs for 2023/2024 events held at each city’s highest-grossing concert venue, using data from Vivid Seats. The costs also reflect the dynamic nature of the resale market, where prices fluctuate based on the popularity of the artist, ticket availability, and the event’s proximity.

The research included an analysis of tour dates from 30 of the most popular music tours during the 2023/2024 season, assessing which cities hosted the most and fewest concerts. The list included a wide range of diverse artists from various genres – from Pearl Jam to Bad Bunny, Blake Shelton, Eagles, and more – providing insights into the geographic distribution of major live music events.

America’s Priciest Concert Weekend Getaways

The Big Apple of Spenders: New York

  • The average concert ticket at Madison Square Garden costs $231.
  • Round-trip flights to JFK average $441.
  • Two nights in an Airbnb? $431.
  • The total for ride-share and meals averages $312.
  • Total Cost: $1,793

The Golden Gate Groove: San Francisco

  • Concertgoers pay about $244 per ticket.
  • The average flight to SFO comes in at $466.
  • Airbnb lodging for two nights costs $388.
  • Additional expenses like meals and ride-shares push the final cost up.
  • Total Cost: $1,692

Other Star-Studded Shows: Boston, Los Angeles, and Seattle

  • Similar expenses from each of these top-five most expensive cities will all hit $1,400+.

Budget Beats: America’s Most Affordable Concert Cities

Bluegrass Bargains: Lexington, Kentucky

  • Round-trip airfare only costs $247.
  • Spend two nights at an Airbnb for just $260.
  • Enjoy lower food and drink prices, making the concert experience even sweeter.
  • Total Cost: $1,037

Rock and Roll Rates: Cleveland

  • Reasonable airfare and Airbnb costs.
  • Venue beers at $11.74 for two.
  • Total Cost: $1,073

Queen City Tunes: Cincinnati

  • Snag a concert ticket for an average of $132.90.
  • Enjoy overall lower costs in venue prices and accommodations.
  • Total Cost: $1,097

Blues on a Budget: Memphis, Tennessee

  • Pay only $132.90 for a ticket at the iconic FedEx Forum.
  • Dive into the city’s rich music scene without spending much.
  • Total Cost: $1,123

Steel City Songs: Pittsburgh

  • Two nights via Airbnb for $214.53.
  • Get a mix of good music and great prices in a city known for its cultural offerings.
  • Total Cost: $1,128

For an in-depth look at each city, along with parking pass costs, line graphs, and infographics that detail all of the gig-tripping factors analyzed, please visit the full study online.

About Upgraded Points LLC

Headquartered in Austin, Texas, Upgraded Points is a travel company that helps to demystify the complex world of travel and credit cards. Launched in 2016 by Alex Miller, Upgraded Points uses targeted research efforts and in-depth studies to help travelers maximize their travel, points, and experiences. Learn more at:

Media Contact:
Alex Miller, Founder

SOURCE Upgraded Points LLC