Now I know a festival is no zombie apocalypse, but there does seem to be a little skill in surviving a festival trip well. Having experienced both wet and dry music festival vacations, I would like to share some of the tricks I’ve learnt to ensure your trip is enjoyable and all about the music.
Lockers – Some festival sites offer rentable lockers with a usb charging port inside. Granted they are maybe not the fastest but for a 5 day gig, it was really handy for keeping phones and cameras topped up and doubled as a lockaway for our valuables while we were in the arena. My recommendation would be to book a locker when you purchase a ticket. The majority sell out before the festival.
Pick Your Pitch – It’s true, we may have overestimated the need to arrive early on the opening day. But doing so did have its perks and meant we got to pick out a prime location for our sleeping place. Parking your tent halfway up a soft hill will see you sheltered from the wind and safer from heavy rainfall. Just remember to face your tent downhill!
Water – Don’t forget to drink! Regardless of whether it’s dry or wet, you will wake up thirsty in the morning in a stifling tent. Dehydration is not an uncommon side-effect at festivals. The amount of walking on its own is enough to see you drinking double in fluids and keeping a re-filling ritual going every morning and night will help ensure you remain hydrated.
Shower Times – Restricted communal showers mean that you will often end up queuing. But you can be smarter in the times you go for your daily rinse. If you can hold off until the hours before the first acts appear on stage (normally early afternoon), the showers will have just reopened from the lunchtime break and you’ll find the queues are minimal if any, as many campers will be eating or en route to the arena.
Quality Tent – It should go without saying but the amount of festival-goers caught out with a leaky tent is extremely high. Good quality tents are not necessarily pricey, but my biggest tip is to do some research and read the reviews. The Campfeuer tent we purchased online arrived quickly, was easy to put up and kept us dry throughout some pretty testing weather. Make sure you put a ground sheet down and remember the inside roof of a tent only remains waterproof if you don’t touch it!
Day Bag – Carrying a small rucksack around may seem like a hassle, but ours saved us many times throughout the festival. It doesn’t have weigh much and ours was big enough to house suncream & sunglasses, a lightweight picnic rug, paracetomal, plasters and waterproofs.
Wellies & Waterproofs – I cannot emphasize enough what a necessity these are! A waterproof poncho is a festival must-have and is so lightweight but not particularly hardwearing so take a few for your trip. You never know when that sky will open. Now to my other clothing essential, wellies. A truck would easily be filled with the amount of mud-sodden discarded shoes at the end of a rainy festival. So wear your wellies with pride and save yourself that extra cost.
Park Near A Landmark – Organisers have begun to make things easier in car parks by placing signs and markers throughout the fields. Parking next to a giant eyeball saved us a lot of time car-searching later.
Emergency Supplies – Taking a few extras makes camping that little bit easier and we used nearly everything in our bag. Our kit consisted of: rubbish bags, cheap bottles of water, biscuits, tinned fruit, painkillers, multivitamins, torch with extra batteries, plasters, plastic spoons & cups, tissues and rope.
Toilets – Now. The facilities at a festival are never going to be a big selling point, but there are a few things you can do to improve the experience. Take toilet roll, lots of it, do not assume that this will always be provided. Putting off the deed until the last minute will not do you any favours as its likely that there will be a queue, especially first thing in the morning. The she-wee and peebol are also both handy options to consider (review available here).