The best way to truly relax and embrace the festival spirit is to spend some time and effort ahead of time packing everything you’ll need. While you won’t be able to fit everything in your car, organising and properly storing your belongings before you leave will relieve stress and ensure that you have a safe time at the festival. Pack the most important items first, followed by the luxury items that will make your festival experience more enjoyable and comfortable.
Method 1 Packing the Essentials
1. Specific guidelines can be found on the festival’s website. Make a note of the festival rules on the FAQ page of your specific website. Make a list of what is not permitted at the festival, as some will not allow you to bring in outside food and beverages and may have specific rules for outdoor camping. Keep this list in mind as you pack, and follow the festival’s rules.
2. Remember to bring your festival tickets and parking passes. The first item you should pack is your festival ticket, as you will be unable to enter the festival without it. Put your tickets and parking passes in a secure location, such as your car or a special pocket. Check the festival’s website to see if any additional paperwork is required.
You may be able to print your tickets online or have them mailed to you in advance.
If the festival uses electronic tickets, make sure your phone is charged and ready to go when you arrive.
3. Purchase a number of large water bottles. Check the festival’s website to see if there are water stations set up throughout the festival, as this will determine how much water you need to bring. Bring two or three water bottles to refill and carry with you during the festival. If the festival does not have filling stations, bring enough water to last the entire day.
CamelBak packs are ideal for festivals because they are hydration packs that allow you to transport water via an attached tube.
4. Use sunscreen and sunglasses to protect yourself from the sun. Being stranded at an outdoor festival without sunscreen can result in severe sunburns, so bring plenty of sunscreen. If you’re going to a multi-day festival, bring two or three bottles to share with friends. Being outside for several days puts your eyes at risk of sun damage, so bring two pairs of sunglasses. You never know when you’ll lose a pair of shoes while dancing.
The SPF level of your sunscreen is entirely up to you, but purchasing higher SPF levels will allow you to apply it less frequently.
5. Bring a lot of toiletries. Bring two or three bottles of hand sanitizer with you and use it after using the restroom and before eating. Pack wet wipes to clean your hands if they get dirty, as well as to remove any mud or grime from your body during the festival. Pack dry shampoo for showering, a first-aid kit, toothpaste for your toothbrush, and deodorant.
Wet wipes are also useful for cleaning your eating utensils after eating.
6. Make a copy of the festival schedule for yourself. Before you leave, look up the festival schedule online. Print two or three copies of the schedule (in case you misplace one) and keep one with you at all times. During the festivities, cell service may be spotty, so stick to the printed schedule when navigating and planning your day.
7. Get a portable battery charger for your phone. Find a portable battery charger that fits your phone online or in a store that sells electronics. Purchase enough batteries to power the portable pack and keep it in your car or backpack. Keep your phone battery charged throughout your trip in case you get separated from your group or need to contact someone for assistance in an emergency.
These are especially important for outdoor music festivals where power outlets are limited.
Method 2 Packing Clothes and Accessories
1. Pack appropriate, enjoyable clothing that corresponds to the weather outside. Festival attire should be unique and fun, but you should also be prepared for a variety of weather conditions. Bring a raincoat or poncho unless it is absolutely certain that it will not rain. Consider bringing lightweight, quick-drying pants. Bring one outfit for each day of the festival, as well as extra socks and underwear for sleeping.
2. Pack appropriate festival footwear. Choose shoes or boots that will protect your feet if you are stomped on. Bring waterproof shoes or boots if it is going to rain during your trip to keep your feet dry. Sandals are not recommended if you intend to dance in a large crowd because your toes may be stepped on.
3. Keep your ID, wallet, and cell phone in a fanny pack. Purchase a fanny pack online or from a local retailer and wear it around your waist at all times. Put anything personal or important inside the fanny pack, especially your ID, money, and cell phone. Wrap these items in a plastic bag in case they get wet or you spill something on your fanny pack.
Consider taking out some cash and storing it in your fanny pack as well. Some restaurants accept debit cards, while others do not.
Fanny packs are back in style, and they help you keep track of your most important possessions.
4. Purchase a set of high-quality earplugs. Wear earplugs during the show if you are close to the venue’s speakers, as the loud music can cause significant ear damage. Use these earplugs at night if you’re camping, as you might have rowdy neighbours who stay up later than you.
Concert earplugs can be purchased online for as little as $5 per pair.
Method 3 Packing for Your Campsite
1. Bring plenty of food and cooking equipment. Although there will be food available at the festival, the cost of each meal will quickly add up, and the lines will frequently be very long. Pack perishable foods, such as hot dogs, hamburgers, and vegetables, in an ice-filled cooler. If you intend to cook, invest in a battery-powered portable gas stove. Bring nonperishable snacks like peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, nutrition bars, and nuts to snack on throughout the day.
Pre-made pasta salads, dehydrated meals, fresh fruits and vegetables, chips and salsa, and protein bars are all excellent festival foods.
To avoid running out of food, make a food schedule for yourself and ration it every day.
Remember to bring coffee for the mornings!
2. If the festival is a camping event, buy a tent to sleep in. Find a tent that can accommodate your entire group, or purchase a one-person tent if you prefer to sleep alone. To select your tent in person, go to an online retailer such as Amazon or a sporting goods store. Decorate your tent however you want, as this is a fun way to add some festive flair to your campsite.
3. Bring a sleeping bag and a sleeping pad with you. Even if you’re camping at a festival in the summer, use a sleeping bag in your tent for maximum comfort. Place your sleeping pad on the floor of your tent and your sleeping bag on top of it. If it gets cold, the sleeping bag will keep you warm and comfortable while you sleep.
If you’re going camping in the spring or during a cold season, invest in a sleeping bag that specialises in keeping you warm.
If your festival is in the summer, invest in a warm weather sleeping bag to keep you cool.
4. Bring a pillow with you to sleep on. Pillows may appear to be a luxury item, but they significantly improve camping comfort. To transport the pillow into the festival, place it between your backpack and your back. Small, compressible camping pillows are also available online or at sporting goods stores.
5. Bring a canopy with you to your campsite. Provide yourself with some shade and shelter, especially if your festival is during the summer months, to make your campsite more comfortable. During breaks from the festivities, use the canopy to congregate with friends and to eat meals. Check with the festival venue to ensure that your camping site is large enough to accommodate a canopy and that they are permitted.
If you intend to spend a lot of time lounging under the canopy, bring a foldable table and chairs for maximum comfort.
6. Pack for the return trip as well. You’ll most likely be exhausted and hungry when you get back to your car after the festival. To leave in the car, pack a bag of warm, clean, comfortable clothes, fluffy socks, water, snacks, a towel, and some relaxing music. Bring anything else you can think of to make the trip home more comfortable.
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