Getting tickets for concerts in Japan are incredibly difficult, from my research there are a few websites that are generally used for all concerts but they are all in Japanese and really cater to only Japanese residents. They don't seem to use something like Ticketmaster, so it seems like the best options for foreigners or at least in the UK, which is where I reside, is to use a service and the two best places I came across were govoyagin and japanconcerttickets. I should also say, that I've never tried to get concert tickets for another country before, so I'm a fish out of water when it comes to this stuff - any advice for next time would be much appreciated!!!
I emailed both sites before general sale for the concert was even available and both services were quick to respond answering all my questions and really the first thing you have to do is to get a quote.
I personally budgeted a pretty large amount for concert tickets because the unfortunate thing of using a service is that they naturally charge fees but like I said, it seemed like it was my only option.
I opted for govoyagin in the end purely because it was a larger ticketing office that specialized in many tourist events for Japan and many other countries, so I assumed that I would probably end up using the site for other touristy tickets. The quote was only 10 USD cheaper than japanconcerttickets, so there wasn't any significant price difference between the two services.
However, after my experiences, I should have figured that the best option would have been to use BOTH!
The first mistake I made was underestimating how sought after these tickets would have been because not only was this the fabulous Koda Kumi but it was also her FINAL show from her 47 prefecture tour - I had completely forgotten what it was like to get hot tickets like this, when you have four computers on the go 'waiting in line', only to have them all gone by the time you get through. I thought, well I'm paying for a service, surely they'll have no problem but I'm guessing, that the reality is, they are probably poor sods at a computer too, somewhere in Tokyo trying to figure out if the website is still queuing or crashing.
Ultimately, govoyagin failed to get my tickets through general sale, so they instead got me tickets through a third party - another option I had prepared and budgeted for. The tickets cost 362 USD in the end, and for the record I had budgeted about £300 for these tickets. A silly amount to pay for concert tickets but I had a very 'fuck it, you only live once' kind of attitude to the whole thing!
Japanconcerttickets do NOT buy third party tickets, so that is another thing to bare in mind and govoyagin said that they could not guarentee a full refund on the third party tickets but they would try their best.
I also want to add, that I did notice a few third party tickets available on viagogo for Kumi's other tour stops, so I always assumed that this would be a last resort, however, there were never any listed for her Okinawa show so basically a service like govoyagin was still needed for third party tickets from Japanese re-sellers.
Overall, my experience with Govoyagin was a pleasant one, their customer service was top notch and I think should I ever decide to grab tickets for Japan again and I would probably use them and should I want Koda Kumi tickets again - I'm going to use BOTH, doubling my chances of getting a ticket because if I'm lucky enough to get a hold of too many tickets, I now know that I can easily re-sell them!
Ok, boring ticket stuff over, lets talk about the concert -