At Coachella - weekend one, Win Butler from Arcade Fire blasted the Coachella Festival Promoters for their VIP debacle. I was there, I was VIP, I felt ripped off. Coachella is trying to fly under the radar with their recently diminished VIP passes and the losers are the festival goers that unwittingly paid the premium price. A VIP pass purchased in 2014 does not provide access to the premium viewing area next to the Coachella Stage as it did in recent years. The areas in front of the stages are exclusive for VIP Special Guest and Artist. During my Week One 3 day VIP experience I was never granted access to any special viewing areas (such as the area by the Coachella stage).
The VIP purchase can be misleading...There are 2 basic passes available on the sale page; General Admission for $375 and VIP for $799. Since (1) there is not a pass sold called VIP “Special Guest”, (2) VIP passes are double the price therefore you expect to receive double the experience, (3) festivals at the same caliber of Coachella offer VIP viewing areas, (4) VIP used to include access to the viewing area next to the Coachella Stage, and (5) there is no warning that the VIP pass is diminished or that the Special Guest designation is granted by "powers that be" to the elite, family, friends, one could easily be fooled that VIP is the pass you need to purchase to access the premium viewing areas.
The web site is clear that Coachella VIP passes grants you access to 2 VIP areas for drinking, eating, and bathrooms. If you are going to Coachella for convenient upfront and close viewing of your favorite bands, VIP DOES NOT PROVIDE YOU ANY BENEFIT. If you want a worthy VIP experience, I suggest you look into Bonnaroo (Tenn), SASQUATCH! (Wash), Outside Lands Music and Arts Festival (San Francisco), Lollapalooza (Chicago), Snowball Music Festival (Denver) …they all provide special viewing platforms or viewing areas.
If you are not going for the live artist experience, the $141 per day premium will allow you to sit in a VIP drinking area all day long. Between all the conversations going on by folks not listening to the music, you can still hear the music from a local remote speaker. Over 3 days I visited the VIP areas 5 times for a quick drink, quick food, and bathroom break. VIP fell enormously short of double the experience.
These are entirely my observations and opinions and I encourage you to thoroughly investigate what the VIP pass offers and I warn you not to make any assumptions based on past Coachella experiences or what their competitors are offering. Coachella isn't keeping up with other high visibility festivals. Bummer for them and us!