Every raver’s favorite time of year is in full swing. Festival Season kicked off with events such as CRSSD, Beyond Wonderland, BUKU, Okeechobee, Ultra Music Festival and with many more in the months that follow including Coachella, Dreamstate SF, and our home away from home, EDC Las Vegas.
With all these festivals ahead of us, you will need a few things to enhance your experience. After all, it is key to be prepared, especially for multi-day events. I have found that by bringing these essential items have provided comfort, convenience, and an overall better experience. Here are my top suggestions that I cannot rave without... and a few additional items you may want to check out.
1. PORTABLE / SOLAR CHARGER:
I can not express how thankful I have been to have had this on my person at every event. Face it, your phone is bound to run out of juice at some point. Taking photos, videos, and sending out messages to your friends can and will drain your battery. A well charged phone will save you many headaches, particularly towards the end of your festival experience when you’re trying to find your friends, or request your rides. Finally, you’ll have plenty of more time to record your favorite sets!
2. WATER BOTTLE:
This is an absolute essential on my list. Water bottles are permitted into festivals as long as they are empty upon entry, and you’ll be able to refill them at free water stations. They are small, easy to carry, and a durable one only costs about $10-$15. If you don't like the idea of having to constantly refill your bottle, invest in a Hydration pack.
3. BACKPACK / FANNY PACK:
I recommend these four different options: A Solar Backpack, Hydration Pack, A small one or two compartment "classic" backpack, and/or, a hands free fanny pack. (Be sure to check your festivals bag size requirements.)
I highly recommend BirkSun solar backpacks for any camping festival where you won’t have much access to a power outlet. What they offer in short is a backpack with a built in solar panel and battery to charge what you need when you need it. For all day sunny festivals such as Coachella, and LIB(Lightning In A Bottle), this will keep your phone charged all weekend.
Check it out: https://www.birksun.com
Vibedration is a personal rave favorite of mine and staying hydrated is of the utmost importance. Vibedration’s backpacks provide you with a stylish way of remaining healthy and happy throughout the duration of your festival experience. It eliminates the need to continuously buy expensive water bottles, and can easily be refilled at the free water stations.
Check it out: https://vibedration.com
On a budget? A simple backpack has proven to always be practical and useful for me. It provides a space to store items you periodically use and small articles of clothing such as a sweater for when the sun goes down. If you already have one for school, use that. If you're looking to be completely hands free, a fanny pack will be easily accessible, safe, and in front at all times.
4. CHAPSTICK / GUM:
When you’re dancing for hours on end in the heat, chapped lips are inevitable. Buy a 3-pack of Chapstick at your local pharmacy, supermarket, or drug store. A three pack will provide you one sealed lip moisturizer for each day of the festival. Trust me, you don’t want dry lips in 100 degree weather. Stick to a medicated chapstick if possible, but any should do.
As festivals don't allow opened packs of gum, buy a couple packs for each day of the festival. Gum allows you to keep fresh breath throughout the day and can help keep you alert for the drive home or back to the hotel.
5. SUN SCREEN:
No one likes getting a sunburn. A simple SPF 50+ lotion or spray will save your skin and keep you comfortable during and after the festival weekend.
There is no air-conditioning within large crowds at massive. A fan will bring you the fresh air you need, when you need it.
7. ROLL OF TOILET PAPER / WET WIPES / HAND SANITIZER:
I don't think I need to explain this one... but these items will save your life in any festival porta potty.
Depending on the type of festival you will be attending, many outdoor festivals can kick up quite a lot of dust which can lead to getting sick, or respiratory problems. Better to be safe then sorry.
9. EAR PLUGS:
They aren't for everyone, but if you're looking to keep your ear's in tact for a lifetime of festival attendance then I recommend getting a good pair of ear plugs that minimize the volume without decreasing the quality of sound. They can vary vastly in price, but here are a few recommended options below.
ETYMOTIC - ER-20's: $25
10. EXTRA HOTEL ROOM KEY:
Prepare for the unexpected. When attending festivals in a large group and staying at a nearby hotel, keeping an extra room key will grant you access to your room whether your group is with you or not. Groups often get separated, make sure you're prepared to find your own way back and enter the room on your own.
11. CASH ON HAND:
In my past festival experiences, carrying cash has made purchasing merchandise, food, and drinks much simpler and faster than swiping my credit or debit card. Keep in mind some vendors may not accept your card, and may only take cash. Lines for ATM machines can be long and will charge a hefty service fee. Save yourself the time, and money!
A festival essential isn’t always something that you need to bring. Renting a locker is a great investment and you can always share one with a friend. Throughout my experience there comes a time where I simply no longer need to carry my wallet. A locker provides a safe space for all of your valuables so you won't have to worry about losing them. Many lockers also have a universal charger inside. In the past, and during colder events, I store pants, jackets, and other articles of clothing, just in case.
Additional Suggested Items:
FESTIVALPAK: Instead of individually buying everything you need, this 11-item kit provides all the essential items you need for a music festival weekend. Perfect for a newbie or veteran wanting to survive a music festival so that you can concentrate on the music and have a great time. Every item included has been carefully selected by a team of festival-goers to ensure you have a good time without breaking the bank. This kit will ensure your phone is charged and your body is hydrated the whole time!
Items included in the Festivalpak:
Portable Phone Powerbank Charger, HydraMate's Foldable BPA-Free Water bottle, Bandana Microfiber Quick-Dry Towel, 3-in-1 Universal Phone Fisheye Lens, Banana Boat® Sport Sunblock SPF3, Universal Phone USB Fan, UGREEN Premium Headphone Splitter, Hand Sanitizer, SPF 30 Organic Lip Balm, Emergen-C Electrolyte Mix (2pc).
A steal at only $40 - USE CODE PNDA10 for an additional 10% off.
VANSKY AIR LOUNGER: Great for any weekend long festival experience. There are many variations of the air lounger, but our recommendation is the Vansky Inflatable Air Lounger. It's affordable ($36 on Amazon), light weight (2.5lbs), and is equipped with a head rest, pockets, and drink holder.
QUBE TENT: Although a bit pricey($250-$320), this is a great tent is quick to set up(2 min) and is quick to pack out. It can combine with other QUBE's to create a network of tents with your friends and comes with add on's such as a solar panel/power bank and an LED light strip to illuminate the tent.
GOTenna: This device gives you text and GPS on your phone, with no service required. These worked like a charm at EDC Las Vegas, and we expect they would just about anywhere else. A pair sells for $149(4-pack $289), but this little device will allow you to message your friends in highly congested areas.
This next item is FOR HER :)
GOGIRL: No one likes having to sit down in a porta potty. GOGIRL is a urinating device which allows you to stand. It's made from medical grade silicone, and can be washed and re-used.
Do you have any suggestions for items or products I may be missing out on? What are YOUR festival essentials? Let me know in the comments below!