How to be a festival master this summer
It’s hard to enough to survive a British music festival as it is, but if you turn up at your temporary campsite unprepared, you’re likely to have a terrible time.
Sure, it’s not easy to make your short stay in a field comfortable, but with the help of some of these tips, tricks, and helpful gadgets, you’ll have the best chance there is.
Here are some essential lifehacks for festival goers this summer.
1. Plan your route
If you’ve ever been to a festival before, you’ll probably not need this advice.
If you haven’t been to a festival before, get your hands on a map and printed line-up ASAP, and proceed to plan your daily route like you’re going around the world in 80 days.
Take note of distances involved between car parks, bus drop-offs, and campsites. Especially if you’re lugging crates of beer.
2. Take waterproof bags
Again, anyone who’s been to a music festival before will know – all too well, most likely – the importance of waterproof bags.
If it rains (and let’s face it, it probably will), the last thing you want is to see your clean clothes float off in the soggy bog that was once your field.
3. Keep your bottle lids
The human race can be trusted with possibly life-threatening substances as long as they’re bottled up, but apparently, we’re too irresponsible to have the lids to those bottles.
Sick of having to drink a full bottle of water in one go because you can’t put it down without the top? Just take your own lids, and if anyone says anything, tell them the anonymous cashier gave you it.
4. Double down on the water
Festival hydration 101: take a bottle of drinking water, separate from your toothbrush water.
Yes, we said toothbrush water, because as well as hydration, you’re going to need to rinse your toothbrush with an extra bottle of water. Always double down on the H2O.
5. Fork out for hygiene (if possible)
Believe it or not, there are portable shower packs available for purchase right now. They come in varying degrees and prices, so it’s not absolutely essential that you splash out for a quality shower, but obviously the more you spend the cleaner you’ll be.
It’s absolutely essential that you do not use the showers available at the festival, lest you be in danger of “cheating”, as regulars call it, and this is a perfect substitute.
6. Hide smart
If you’re going to attempt to sneak alcohol into a festival arena, then at least be smart about it. There’s no way a couple of cans down your wellies is going to see you through the day (although that is a tried and tested tactic), so think bigger.
And we’re not advocating the breaking of rules (come on guys, rules are so important), we’re just saying that if you do hollow out a massive baguette and use it to sheath a litre bottle of Vodka, don’t get caught.
7. Use clashfinder
One of the major challenges for any festival goer is the clash. Not the iconic London punk band, but that annoying scenario when two of your favourite artists are scheduled for the same time, at opposite ends of the festival site.
While we’re waiting on science to invent a teleportation device, the next best thing is clashfinder.com, an ingenious website that allows you to create your own personal schedule, and identify those head-to-head dilemmas well in advance.
You can customise your own plan, and print before you go.
8. Learn how to repair wellies
Trust us, you’ll not enjoy the process of learning to repair Wellington Boots at the time, but when everyone’s knee-deep in sludge, you’ll have the last laugh.
We’re sure your wellies are invincible – honestly, we too have grown personally attached to our festival footwear – but accidents happen, and you’ll need to know how to patch up a hole before your socks look like Frodo Baggins’ feet.
9. Don’t judge the bum bag
Yes, they are absolutely vile, but if you’re being honest, we think you too will appreciate the convenience of the fanny pack/bum bag.
Why wouldn’t you want all your valuables right under your nose at all times?
10. Umbrella hats: dorky but useful
While you’re bringing the fanny pack back into fashion, have a go at the umbrella hat as well.
We agree, in any other circumstances, an umbrella hat looks ridiculous, and serves little purpose, but at a summer music festival the terrible fashion faux pas will keep you dry.
11. Don’t ignore blisters
[We don’t have any images of blisters. Thankfully.]
Blisters are a nuisance at the best of times, but at a festival, they can turn your raucous good time into a nightmare. Do not ignore blisters when they inevitably pop up.
Get yourself some specialised blister plasters, or some New Skin, because after hours of walking up hills and dancing, you’re definitely going to need it.
12. Try to play nice
This is the most important lifehack that we can offer you, mainly due to the fact that there are far too many people out there who simply cannot control themselves while under the influence of alcohol – which there is a lot of at festivals.
Do everyone a favour, and don’t be that guy. Don’t slam into tents for the fun of it, don’t flex your muscles by randomly fighting in the mud, and seriously, do not urinate into a cup and throw it onto a crowd of people.
Why anyone would actually want to do that is beyond us.