Everyone remembers their first time. It was exciting and a bit scary, there were limbs everywhere and yeah, it got messy, but it was special. Oh, and you shared it with thousands of other people!
We’re talking about your first festival of course (what were you thinking about?) Your first time can be daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. Just follow these top tips for losing your festival virginity, and you’ll be at it like a pro in no time.
1. Camp it up
‘Oh I’m glad today is over, and I’m leaving just as the party gets started’ – said no one, ever! Take the plunge and pitch a tent. Just remember a few key items:
• Tent – Pop-up because drunk people are notoriously shit at putting up real tents.
• Bin bags – Very versatile. Good for tidying up, vomming in and as an impromptu raincoat or shade from the sun.
• Earplugs – At 5 am every festival turns into a rowdy warzone so if you want a few hours kip these are essentials. Alternatively, you can sleep when you’re dead (which is the approach we prefer.)
• A flag – Unless you’re a professional tracker or a ninja, then you will inevitably lose your tent. It’s a right of festival passage, just bring something to stand out. If you’re travelling with our Sweat Tours crew, your in luck because your team leader will already have set one up, or have provided you with a mini map that will lead you to your lush accommodation outside of the campgrounds.
2. Fuck fashion
There are no rules, wear whatever the hell you want BUT be prepared to wear at least some of it for three solid days. Don’t bring 48 outfit changes because everyone hates that person (and they’ll get trashed anyway.)
Essentials = Sunnies and enclosed shoes. No one glances twice at a dude skipping along dressed as a glittery unicorn, but it’s a rookie error to do it in crappy footwear- or with none at all.
3. Eat, drink and be merry
We love the food vendors at music festivals almost as much as we love the music! Some of the best restaurants from across the host country set up a food stall, so it’s always a foodie’s heaven! With plenty of options for every taste and budget and ample menu items for the vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free, if it looks good- eat it! Even if it’s covered in grease- you’ll burn it off dancing (or perhaps by getting a bit freaky in your tent?)
B.Y.O.B if you can, and if not then take out a mortgage so you can afford to get WASTED! Otherwise, check out our latest blog on smuggling your booze into events.
4. Get in early
The earlier you get there, the better your camping spot will be and the more time you’ll have to drink alcohol. Late arrivers get the crap pitches next to the toilets and literally a 45-minute walk away from the festival gates.
Most people will also suggest that you also try to leave early, but when you are hungover, tired AF and sweaty, you don’t want to get stuck in a massive queue of other people shuffling towards the exit. Wait it out and you’ll be surprised at how easy it is to leave after the main swarm of people have left.
5. Wet Wipes
It’s in capitals because you will DIE without them. Well, you might not actually die but you won’t be in a good place. A few festivals under your belt and you might be hardcore enough to embrace the self-stink (and we admire that), but until then wet wipes are you festival besties.
Sweat? Wet wipe! Poo? Wet wipe! A bit of lovin’? Wet wipe! WET WIPE! WET WIPE!
DO – Have a drill. It’s good to be carefree, but you’ll kick yourself if you miss the main act. Toilets, Bar then Stage. Set a meeting point for when you invariably lose a comrade in a mosh pit or during a dance-off.
DON’T – Spend the whole time taking photos and celeb spotting. Just enjoy. Oh, also don’t get pregnant or get a tattoo. In fact, make no life-changing decisions while you have festival brain.
See, not much to it really. We attend music festivals for a living and haven’t died- so get excited! You festival first-timers will have the time of your life!
Written by Kim Wilson