KCON LA 2018 Diamond Package Overview
Hey there ladies and gentlemen! As many of you know, we just ended the three day celebration of all things K-Pop in Los Angeles, California.
KCON LA 2018 was jam packed with a wide variety of artists, including Wanna One, TWICE, Dreamcatcher, fromis_9, IMFACT, PENTAGON, SEVENTEEN, and more! OSKP was lucky enough to score tickets last year, but this time around, the owners wanted to step it up a notch.
For those that don’t know, OSKP is actually owned by a husband and wife team that adore all things K-Pop. We work hard to remain neutral, but there are always those groups who win our hearts.
This time around, we decided to see what all the hype around the Diamond package was. After three full days of enjoying the perks, we’re bringing you a full overview (complete with all sorts of photos and videos!). Please keep in mind that cameras weren’t allowed, so the photo and videos were recorded by phone.
What’s included in the Diamond package?
Each year, the diamond package actually changes just a bit as the company adjusts the perks. This time around, the Diamond package jumped a bit in price, with each ticket costing $1,700 USD.
With the package, you got access to all hi-touches and audiences. The audience access was a bit redundant, since the likelihood is most fans go straight for the hi-touch, but they’re both included nonetheless. There’s a dedicated fast lane for the concert with preferred general admission access.
Klub Kcon and a Backstage Meet & Greet were included along with 2 Flower Boy Cafe Sessions, Red Carpet access and a ‘luxury’ merchandise package.
As far as we could tell, the concierge service was the wonderful gentlemen who carted us around from the different events. Thanks a ton to Hojin for putting up with all of us!
The package may not seem like a ton, but by the end of day 2, you’ll be ready for a nap, no doubt!
Let’s break it down even more.
Flower Boy Cafe
First, let’s jump into the Flower Boy Cafe. With all the hype each year, we expected a ton from this. The guys in the cafe gave it their all and were super sweet. There were a variety of looks, much like most K-Pop groups, so there was a guy who appealed to each of the lovely attendees.
We were lucky enough to be seated with Aiden, not to be confused with his fellow cafe member Ayden. Aiden was very friendly and helpful. He served our carbonated milk and canned coffee with a huge smile and made conversation with each person at the table. One of the best things was that he worked hard to interact with each person, instead of focusing on a select few (or just the lovely ladies there).
The cafe actually played a game, although in the back section where we were seated, we couldn’t hear it. Unfortunately, the dance lessons and stage surrounded the cafe, so no matter when it was, there was booming bass pounding over their poor voices. Despite that, the guys worked hard to make the best of it and were very successful at making us feel welcome.
With the time constraints (will be touched on later), we were only able to comfortably fit one of our Flower Boy Cafe sessions in this year, butt it was definitely a good experience.
Jumping back a bit, we got a luxury package instead of the standard merchandise package upon check in. Check in itself was a breeze, with only a select few of us, there wasn’t much of a line (although we waited with some fellow OSKP team members in general admission in the heat and humidity).
The luxury package definitely didn’t let us down! It included the KCON light stick, which was more important than ever since it was actually something that got people special polaroids for having in the audience engagements. It also included a special KCON jacket (in mens sizing), a Kocowa plushie, a full set of Kokowa meets Chewyhams figurines, a plush KCON blanket, a KCON water bottle, and a wonderful KCON jacket to store it all in.
We ended up using the bottle and backpack right away, while the jacket became part of the PJ’s in the evenings after the concerts.
Overall, the package was far better than anything we’ve ever seen from KCON before!
The convention itself was pretty standard overall. We had the same level of access as each of the other attendees, except on Friday. With the craziness of the stamp books they have each year, we’ve yet to be able to complete one. This time, we used the hour early entry available on Friday only to get in the convention and complete the tasks!
It was rather amusing going in so early, since we ended up being guinea pigs for many of the stands. They weren’t quite ready for the early entry folks, and it seemed like many weren’t aware we could do that, so we got real time run downs of the inner works of the convention.
The stands at the convention were better than last year, without a doubt! There was free food and stuff, along with even more beauty products, K-Pop products, and giveaways!
Probably our favorite stand was the soda refill stand. We bought the mug on day one and spent 5 dollars a day to get unlimited icy cold drink refills with some of the best tasting caffeine we’ve had in ages.
The dance workshops and stages were amazing to watch. People gave it their all, even when they struggled, and watching them enjoy themselves and just let go was wonderful! We sat in the rest area and watched quite a few of the dance sessions. By the end of each, these people were dancing like pros!
The hi-touch was probably the portion of the tickets that just made it worth every penny. With the Diamond package, there was a special line just for us, with Platinum right behind us. We arrived at some point prior to start, plopped ourselves on the ground, and just waited.
The group this year in Diamond was really friendly, and it got to the point where the 20 something people didn’t bother lining up, but instead just made a little blob where we compared notes and talked about our favorite groups. There wasn’t any competition for the best spot amongst us, which was a great change of pace.
When the doors opened, they brought us in and we rushed to the front bars! Unfortunately, they were inconsistent on when they brought us in, so more of ten than not, arriving even 30 minutes before wasn’t enough. They would push the Diamonds to the front even if we were late, but we tried not to take advantage of that. In our eyes, the others were waiting, we were late, so we chilled in the back!
Now, something that should probably be noted, my male counterpart is a broad shoulder, 6’2″ man. In the front, it was often hard to see behind him. We had quite a few complaints, although the folks knew what they were getting into when they lined up!
One thing that might make it even better is separating Diamond out into a separate section altogether.
Personally, it seemed unfair to some extent to move ahead of everyone even when we arrived later. It is one of the perks of the package, but it’s a sure fire way of creating some level of hostility between fans. If they’re going to continue doing that, it would make more sense to separate it just a bit more to prevent that problem.
Another issue is the fact that Diamond and Platinum jump the lines for the actual hi-touch portion. Getting everyone sorted out in the crowd was insanely hard for security. I will say, our security was very friendly and worked hard, but I didn’t envy them for having to sort through all of our bands.
The hi-touch themselves and audience engagements were wonderful, regardless of any minor negatives. The artists were engaged and happy to be there. They answered their questions, regardless of how obscure (NU’EST W fans, I mean you! Goats!). Each session was slightly different, although they kept consistent with the charades game and fan awards.
The actual interaction with the artists was rushed, but understandable with how many of us were there. it was wonderful seeing the artists up there, any at some point, we felt so sweaty and gross my husband started just fist bumping everyone! Spare their poor hands from our sweaty ones!
Backstage Meet & Greet
While the hi-touch allows us a chance to meet our favorite idols up close and personal, the backstage meet & greet gives lucky fans a chance to get even more contact! With a strict time constraint (our meet and greet was at noon while TWICE had their hi-touch at 12:30 pm), we gathered around with our host Hojin to make our way under the stadium and wait to meet our special artists!
Prior to sitting down in the chairs below the stadium (we were in some sort of underground bar!), they confiscated our phones. While that portion was a bit strange – being detached from phones is a very weird feeling – as soon as our special artist walked in and we realized it was MOMOLAND, it didn’t matter! The girls were friendly and sweet, telling us a bit about the things they’ve done while in LA and taking group photos with us.
Overall, we were in a smaller room, so we were just a few feet in front of the lovely ladies, which is closer than we get on a normal basis! The meet and greet was short, but definitely worth it and MOMOLAND was a great experience.
To be honest, the most disappointing thing of the entire Diamond package was the concert. Not because the concert was lacking, because the artists definitely brought their A-Game, but because the stage setup was horrible and they split the group into 4 separate sections. That split wasn’t communicated to us either.
We were guided into one section, which only had a view of half of stage, and over half of the section couldn’t even see people when on the stage due to the massive height of the center stage. The sections extending out from the center stage dipped down, which lead to wonderful chances to see the idols, but made it so nobody on the floor could see when something was going on with the other side. Most of the performances faced another direction, which left people running around scrambling and causing headaches for the security teams.
Unfortunately, they also didn’t air the footage on all of the screens and they weren’t really visible from the floor. We couldn’t see the translations, so it led to some down time where we were left looking like lost little turkeys.
All in all, there’s one way to accurately sum up what we saw from our section; butts. Lots and lots of butts. Basically all of our shots were booty shots, which was definitely not what we had hoped for.
Bad positioning aside for the package, the music was incredible and the groups were definitely out to impress. Each group completely blew fans away and the fan chants from the audiences were incredible.
Artists like Ailee and SEVENTEEN were crowd pleasers and hyped people up. Every performance brought something unique to the table, with powerhouses like Davichi and beautiful ballads from Roy Kim.
Overall, despite the stage issues, the concert was beautiful! The fans were supportive of each artist and overall, politer than expected! There was minimal shoving compared to normal!
With all of the fun and whatnot with the various events throughout the day, we ended up skipping both days for the Red Carpet!
To sum things up…
Diamond was an amazing chance to meet the artists on a more personal level – with constant interactions and the meet and greet. It was less stressful overall and was definitely worth the chunk of change. The only real complaint would have to be the stage itself, but that was something that wasn’t limited to just that package.
Some of the wonderful fans we encountered were sweet enough to send us their photos! Fans are certainly envious of these two lucky fans who got their phones taken by TWICE!
— Mitchell 🦑 (@MitchasaurasRex) August 12, 2018
Photo credit for the two incredible shots and video above goes to n.c028. Please don’t reuse their photos/videos without proper credit.
Now, be sure to take a look at all of our photos below! Please note, we posted all photos taken at the event just in case anyone wanted a chance to see them, so there are quite a few to go through!
Along with the photos, we got an entire army of videos. Be sure to check out each of the clips below (some of them are rather short, but great for still shots!).