With summer in full swing, now is the time to think about taking your act on the road! Whether you’re a one-man-band or part of a full troop, summer is the best time to play new shows, see new states, and get yourself in front of new audiences!
Of course, band touring costs are a significant hurdle when planning a music tour, and that can be tricky to deal with if you’re having to take care of the logistics yourself. However, fret not! With a little planning and forethought, you can put together an excellent tour!
Get multiple quotes before flying.
If you’re looking to fly for part of your tour, remember to check several of the online travel agencies before you buy any tickets. Priceline, Orbitz, Expedia, and Travelocity are the main four, and you should at least check all of those before committing. The prices aren’t the same and very often one will have a significantly lower rate than the others.
Rent a fuel-efficient car.
Watch specials from your local car rental agencies. It’s very possible to rent an economy car, add insurance, and come out saving money. This is especially worth considering if your current vehicle isn’t reliable. Nothing brings a tour to a screeching halt faster than car troubles on the road.
Share a hotel room.
This is just part of the “fun” of being a young, up and coming band on the road. How many of you can squeeze into one hotel room? Plenty of bands throughout time have lived in pretty cramped conditions, and come out of it as stars on the other end.
Book all your shows ahead of time.
Unless you have an idea for putting on a surprise show, never go to a city unless you already have a gig lined up there. It can be a colossal waste of time driving around a town, looking for clubs with open spots if you haven’t set something up. Don’t hit the road until you’ve got an agreement in place and you know you’ll have a place to perform.
Then, keep booking new shows on the road! It feels really good to announce that, due to popular demand, your tour will be extended for another week!
Bring all the merch you can carry.
This is a hard lesson most young bands don’t enjoy learning – you’re just not going to get that much money from playing gigs alone. If you’re lucky, you might cover your touring costs. If you want to turn those band touring costs into actual profit, you need CDs, DVDs, T-Shirts, thumbdrives, pictures, whatever you can stick your logo on that people might buy.
If you don’t have a good stock of merchandise, you might want to consider delaying your tour until you get some. That’s where the real money is these days.
Plus, of course, keep checking back with us for more tips on how to make your band the success you’ve always dreamed of!