World tours and concerts are opportunities for K-pop artists to interact with their fans worldwide and better connect with them. K-pop artists have always shown enthusiasm to perform in other countries and spread K-pop far and wide. Following are the 10 most successful K-pop concert world tours throughout the eras that have attained much attention and popularity.
As one of the biggest groups in the industry, BTS has attained an insane amount of gross profit for the country of South Korea with their consistent sold-out concerts through the years. They have set several records for concert profits and attendance. In the US, they even broke the records for known American artists. Their impact reaches far and wide. They are one of the few K-pop groups that have performed at Kyocera Dome and other dome venues, with a very high number of seats being sold out for all days. They are the most successful artists in the decade not only album sales-wise but also tour-wise, and they deserve every bit of attention they still get with their continued group hiatus. Individual member concerts like Jack in the Box and AgustD are also getting just as much attendance. One of their notable tours is the Love Yourself World Tour, which even makes for hot theatre viewing.
2. The Big Bang
We cannot talk about K-pop concert success without bringing out the 2nd generation roots, where it all started. While BTS paved the way, it is undeniable that the globalisation of K-pop took flight with the start of Hallyu-Wave in the middle of 2nd generation K-pop. Big Bang is a huge name in K-pop for their impact, and they had several tours that set records for Korean artists of their time. One of their most successful tours was the Made Tour, which accumulated some of the largest numbers of attendees of the year.
TVXQ was a five-piece boyband under SM Entertainment that had a great impact on the second generation of K-pop. They are another group that gained a lot of international fame for K-pop and remains an irreplaceable part of it. Their most successful tours included the Circle/Begin Again Japan Tour. In 2017-18, they accumulated about 1.05 million attendees and established themselves as one of the largest groups of the year.
EXO is one of the leading groups of third-generation K-pop. Their largest tour took place in 2015-16, with over 740K attendees worldwide. They toured 12 countries in Asia and North America and gained worldwide fame. Exo set a record for selling out their tours for five days straight, which was unprecedented at the time.
Twice is another huge 3rd generation group that continues to do sold-out tours worldwide and is very famous throughout the industry for songs like Likey and Fancy. They went extremely viral during their time on the internet and perhaps set the trend for music video views in K-pop. Their recent tour, Ready to Love, was one of their most successful tours. The album targeted a more global market and thus did very well in the US. It is their 5th world tour. They generated over 2 million USD in average ticket revenue.
K-pop world tours are indescribable without mentioning the phenomenon of Blackpink. They are a four-member girl group under YG that gained explosive popularity for their catchy songs that took mainstream music to the next level. They are one of the biggest groups in the world, following BTS, with a large amount of media presence and various brand deals. Their tours being some of the best-selling ones in K-pop is no surprise. They have received recognition for the highest-grossing K-pop tours in 2023. The Born Pink Tour earned a huge amount of revenue. It went over $200 million.
Seventeen has always been famous among 3rd generation K-pop fans. However, recently, the 13-member group has gained explosive popularity. Their world tour, Be The Sun, was also very popular. After the pandemic, their popularity skyrocketed, which resulted in their tours earning over 58 million USD in average revenue. They also performed in places like the Gocheok Dome in Seoul, a prestigious place to perform in their country.
8. TOMORROW X TOGETHER
3rd generation K-pop is undeniably still doing very well, but the 4th generation has been catching up rapidly. While most of them missed a good chunk of time due to the pandemic, after touring started again, 4th generation group concerts gained many attendees. 4th Generation representative idols Tomorrow X Together started their first official world tour with Act: Lovesick, and now, with Act: Sweet Mirage, they have served 13 100% sold-out shows. They have performed in venues like KSPO Dome, Saitama Super Arena, and Kyocera Dome with 100% attendance and sold-out days. These are some of the biggest arenas in the world.
9. Stray Kids
Stray Kids are constantly setting new feats for 4th generation K-pop. Their tours are known to have outperformed big groups like Blackpink and BTS. They have been on their Maniac World Tour for most of 2022 and performed 42 shows across the world, many of them sold-out shows. They are now set to go on their Dome Tour after their explosive success with Five Star, which broke BTS' record for the most pre-ordered K-pop album. Stray Kids have earned their name as a significant representation of what 4th-gen K-pop is about and the power they hold.
Enhypen is one of the rising 4th generation groups, and their success is undeniable. They are a seven-member K-pop group formed by the Mnet survival show I-Land. Their Manifesto World Tour consisted of 22 shows and earned them a gross revenue of over 20 million USD.