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Mistakes You Make At A Festival & How To Avoid Them

Festival season is alive and kickin’…I want to say the same thing about you! I have your best interest in mind and want to let you in on some secrets. SHHHH. Since festivals hold such a dear place to my heart, AND since I have gone to tons of them…my extensive knowledge is something I need to share with you.

Whether it’s your first or your 50th, you are bound to make some mistakes but fear not because I am here to help you avoid those mishaps. Here are the mistakes you make at a festival + how to avoid them!

edc

Not staying hydrated

Festivals seem to always happen when it’s hot as balls outside. Not sure anyone loves to be drenched in their own sweat dancing around but whatever. Water plays a lead role in making it through an entire event. Stay hydrated you thirsty asses. How might you ask?

  1. Bring your own empty water bottle: Most festivals nowadays have free filling stations making it easy to stay hydrated.
  2. A Camel Pack: These stealthy pouches serve as your own watering hole AND backpack to store things in. Best of both worlds. It fits securely on your back with a tiny water hose that sits on your shoulder. Grab that shit and get to drinkin’!
  3. Stop when you need to!: Don’ overdo it, you’ll ruin your entire time and anyone else whose with you. Take a break from the sun, find some shade and drink some water! You will thank me later!

firefly

(Source: FireFly)

Not booking accommodations ahead of time

I will never understand why people wait until the last damn second to do things. Blows my mind that people are willing to pay so much extra money for the sheer fact they couldn’t get their shit together in time. No need to wait until the week of to plan everything…if you decided you’re going then plan immediately! They always seem to creep up on you!

  1. Start looking as soon as you know you’re going!: Especially if you are looking at Airbnb or something similar! Hosts know the popular travel times within their city so prices can go up fast! If you look far in advance, however, you are less likely to encounter those. When you wait, the pickin’s get slim! You might also find that a hotel will be overbooked or the location might be farther out. Making the entire process a hell of a lot more expensive! Don’t procrastinate!
  2. Get a group to help cut costs: A large group makes costs go down significantly. Make sure you figure out who’s going, correlate a place and book ahead! WAY CHEAPER!

hotel

(Source: Hotel)

Not going prepared

It’s hard to remember every single little thing you need, especially if the festival involves camping. What a nightmare. The worst thing you can do is wait until the last minute. You are way more likely to forget very important things that should be obvious! Avoid this by:

  1. Having your ID with you at all times: I have witnessed so many people who get to the front of the line and realize they don’t have their ID. I actually did it at Tomorrow World, except the car I left it in was a mile walk away. You better believe that since then I haven’t left it behind!
  2. Read all the rules of the festival: Don’t get stuck having to throw away gum, selfie sticks or even your GoPro! Even if you don’t have to throw it away, you have to take it back and put it somewhere. Just make sure to read all the guidelines so it makes entry as smooth as possible!!
  3. Make a million lists: Even if you aren‘t camping…make a list. In fact, make 5 lists! Go over them, add and subtract from them. Trust me, you will hate not having some of those valuable items because you didn’t write it down. The power of pen and paper!

camping

(Source: FireFly)

Picking the wrong group

I love my friends. I do. But honestly, I can’t go to a festival with 90% of them. Actually, I hate going in as a group period! Unless you reallllllllly vibe with these people on a daily basis, don’t do it.

  1. Pick a festie bestie:  One person is easy to keep up with! Multiple are not.
  2. Go with someone/people you trust: Let’s hope nothing ever happens to you at a festival, but if it does you need to be around someone or a group you trust!
  3. Delete the needy people: This goes back to my festie bestie post but seriously, needy=negativity. I CANNOT STAND A NEEDY PERSON. Ctrl+ALT+ delete!

festival

Getting too lit

I admit I am usually this person. With alcohol at least. You don’t know how many times my excessiveness has ruined other people’s time…music festival or not. Don’t be that person who gets faded before you even arrive!

  1. Pace yourself: Festivals can last up to 7 days!! Imagine you go hard the first two and can’t enjoy the rest of your time? Even if you only go for a day, pace yourself so you can remember and enjoy the whole experience!
  2. Don’t take things from strangers: This can result in some serious shit! People who are drunk or on drugs might seem like the nicest people ever, but it could be a front. Be safe so you don’t take or drink something random that could be harmful! (Who am I to tell you what to do though? Do as you please bitches, just know I warned you!)

ranker

(Source: Ranker)

Not having battery life on your phone

This is especially important if you are with a big group or meeting up with people. No one likes to be stranded at a festival with no phone battery! You start to stress out, miss part of the show and have to frantically ask randoms for their phone. PLUS, no battery = no pictures!!

  1. Carry an external charger: Top 5 on my list of things to bring! While searching for service, trying to text with no connection AND film/take pictures, your battery life with die a fast death. An external charger doesn’t have to be big and bulky either! Just something compact that holds a couple of charges.
  2. Trade off taking pictures and videos: A hard one to remember but have your friend take some pictures for half and you take some for the other. Everyone can share super easy on the iPhone via Airdrop! This isn’t likely to happen but it’s a thought!

phone

(Source: This)

Polluting the environment

This issue has been around forever, with no signs of slowing down or getting better. Come on ya fucks, this is our Earth that we inhabit! Let’s no pollute it with our laziness. If you can take the time and money to prepare for these events, you can take an extra couple minutes to help pick up your mess.

  1. Pick up your trash!: No shit Sherlock! If you camp, bring some trash bags and leave your campsite spotless. No one wants to have to clean up after you, you filthy slob. Pick your shit up and throw it away! Even if the event isn’t camping, just make it a point not to pollute.

I wish more festivals adopted the who “Burning Man” mentality where you leave no trace! These would be much better places!

Not expressing yourself

Come on guys, this is your time to shine! Festivals help you break away from the daily hustle and bustle of bullshit. Let your weird colors fly!

  1. Dress up! Buy, create, DIY a costume, shirt or whatever! Just let your creativeness flow! This also has to do with the fact of Why you should attend a music festival in the first place!!
  2. Make a totem! Just one other way to showcase your great ideas. Also, the best way for your group to find you in a crowd!

dump trump

(Source: Insomniac)

Okay, my proficient festie goers…did you learn something from this? Hopefully! You better have. Just be smart okay? and obviously, HAVE A FUCKING BLAST. Know some more festival fuck-ups and ways to avoid them? I need to know. Asking for a friend. Leave them in the comments below! Until our next encounter…

xo Bonvoyage Babes

  1. Rebecca says:

    Interesting advice offered, thanks. I’m not really a festival goer if I’m honest as I hate huge crowds and easily get claustrophobic – but if there was ever a festival with HUGE spaces…!

    • Tatum Skipper says:

      I do too thats why I usually stay in the back so you have room to dance and don’t get trampled over near the huge crowd!!

  2. Shaun says:

    Man I am guilty of a few of these. I drank way too much and went to bed as the sun was coming up at a summer festival once. I woke up 2 hours later in a pool of sweat that lead to heat stroke later in the day. So dumb.

    Great tips!

    Shaun
    http://www.thislifeintrips.com

    • Tatum Skipper says:

      Trust me, I am no Saint myself but I have definitely learned not to go too hard in the beginning. Hangovers will literally be the death of me.

  3. Lauren says:

    I cannot even express how much I agree with this post, even though I’m not a festival goer myself! I love a good one day/ two day festival that means I can go home and sleep inbetween, but camping? No fucking way. Lists are my lifeblood though, and I swear by external chargers especially as my phone battery is so awful. I’m going to link to this piece in an upcoming post of mine about a festival in Mexico, so thank you for the super useful tips!!

    • Tatum Skipper says:

      Yeah if you are not prepared for camping then it can be a real bitch! I would hate going across the country trying to camp. Tooooooo expensive!! External chargers are a life saver!! Awesome!! Thank you for linking 😉

  4. Medha Verma says:

    Interesting read. I have never travelled for the purpose of visiting a festival ever but have been thinking about going for one soon. Thanks for sharing, this is a handy list of tips!

  5. Loved this article! Not having battery life is an issue for me and it sucks! It so frustrating when I get ready to capture a moment and my battery is almost dead. Thanks for giving me ideas on how to fix it.

  6. Lisa says:

    I like a good music festival, but never tend to stay overnight. At a lot of the UK festivals people tend to slum it in tents, which I think I may be too old for now!

    • Tatum Skipper says:

      In the UK I feel like its way harder since the weather isn’t always the best! I don’t blame you!

  7. Sari says:

    I seldom big festivities like this. But this can heal regular party goers what to expect and what is need to do in case situation from the list arise.

  8. Christine says:

    Such a great “how not to” list. Haven’t been to a festival in a while but truly reflected on my last one while reading this. Very insightful and good advice for getting more out of your time when attending. You make some very important points such as picking the right people and picking up your trash.

    • Tatum Skipper says:

      The right group is sooooo important. I have been to a couple where I regretted who I went with! It sucks people don’t clean up after themselves!!

  9. I have seen a lot of people get sick or end up in the hospital from not staying hydrated. Everyone gets drunk and forgets to drink a bit of water!

    • Tatum Skipper says:

      Me too!! It’s sad and super scary honestly. Especially for those going to one where its really hot!! Can be a disaster.

  10. I am not a huge festival fan, but this was a great article about them! Looks like you had a blast too!

  11. Claire says:

    I completely agree about thinking about who you go with. I missed one of my fav bands once because the guy was such a drama queen and we were late. Will never forgive him haha
    But’s it funny how things have changed over the years. My first festival I never had to worry about phone battery (ugh I feel old saying that)

  12. Kim says:

    I find this post very helpful & timely! I went to a festival before in another country, and some people passed away that night. *yikes*

    • Tatum Skipper says:

      I’ve seen my fair share of people too fucked up at festivals. Ugh that is terrible. People just don’t know how to act!!

  13. It’s so good that someone finally spoke about it. I think staying hydrated is the most important. I have attended some of the most crowded festivals in extreme hot condition. Keeping a bottle of water with you always helps.

  14. Amber Myers says:

    I’ve never been to a festival. I think it would be too noisy for me. My daughter will probably enjoy one though and I’ll let her know about this!

  15. Ro says:

    This is a great list, so practical but people just seem to forget common sense. I’ve only been a small number of festivals but I wish I had read this list before going as I always seem to forget something or the other. Haha, love the dump trump totem

    • Tatum Skipper says:

      How funny is that totem hahah I had to put it!! Yeah I always have to make lists before I go anywhere and I still forget stuff haha.

  16. Cat says:

    Great tips on how to avoid disasters when attending festivals! It is usually busy so an advanced reservation for accommodation is a great idea! And external charger is a good one as you don’t want your phone to die half-way!

  17. Natalie says:

    These days are WAY behind me as I always travel with the kids but some of your advice is applicable to anyone!! Stay hydrated, bring your own water bottle, stay with trusted friends….those are great tips for anyone!

  18. You’re right – a little bit of planning can go a long way so one doesn’t have to worry about basic logistics.

  19. Nice tips! Especially with summer coming along and all those music festivals coming up!

    XOXO // Check out my latest post if you like 😉
    SINCERELY OPHELIA | CELINE TRIO: WHAT FITS.

  20. Molly says:

    I like your tip about drinking water. Leaving in a desert, I can fully appreciate the need to stay hydrated, especially during a concert where drinking alcohol dehydrates your body.

  21. Making sure you can enjoy yourself for the whole festival is a great point. I wouldn’t want to miss anything. And that goes with the cell phone cameras. I haven’t really loved those portable chargers but you won’t want to not have a camera so you have to have something or many things prepared.

  22. Erin F says:

    These tips are fab! I loved the one about phone battery – that’s the one that seems most important. I would have never thought to allow my bestie to take half the pics but it totally makes sense!

    • Tatum Skipper says:

      Yeah if you alternate back and forth it totally helps! I know people want their own pictures sometimes but even trading off recording videos will help!!

  23. Bhusha says:

    Awesome tips. Festivities in America are so different when compared to festivities in India. But some point hold true across the world and across all cultures like staying hydrated or not polluting environment or getting the right partner in crime!!!

    • Tatum Skipper says:

      I would loveeee to go to one in India it’s just hard planning for one overseas!! The pollution is terrible here!!

  24. Yuen Mi says:

    God I hate people who litters -at festivals, during holidays in a different country. No consideration for people’s hard work. Thanks for the festival tips. It should be very useful this summer.

  25. Justine says:

    Although it isn’t festival related, i can relate to not having my ID on hand when I was in Amsterdam and my travel buddies and i decided to go to a “coffee shop”. Never will I forget to bring my ID again!

    • Tatum Skipper says:

      Well my ID got stolen the day before I went down to Miami for my friends birthday! Luckily only one place turned me down but still.

  26. Megan says:

    These are good points! I haven’t been to a music festival in years!

  27. Not everything goes according to the plan. When going to a festival you should always prepare to expect the unexpected. I guess the best attitude is to be vigilant at all times. And as a party-goer try not to pick up the wrong group. And as the party ends to try to pick up your own trash.

    • Tatum Skipper says:

      I completely agree with that too! The weather was soooooo cold this past weekend and we were not expecting that until the last minute.

  28. Nathan says:

    I don’t attend a lot of festivals but these all seem like good pointers! Some of your photos look so fun that maybe I should start attending more of them. They look like so much fun!

  29. I am not a festival goer, but I ever attend one, I’ll definitely keep these tips in mind. The most important one is not to mess up the environment.

  30. Riely says:

    The best take away from this is to pickup your trash. The sad part after festivals take place is the trash left behind polluting the area, which often takes place in beautiful parks. It’s obviously a fun time to attend, but the lack of concern from others to respect the space often discourages me from taking part.

  31. Only By Land says:

    Delete the needy people, this applies to more than just festivals and I love how you describe these people! Staying hydrated is important, especially in the heat. You have a lot of attention to detail here about reading the rules, booking ahead of time, bringing ID etc… I can’t believe people don’t book ahead of time!

    • Tatum Skipper says:

      You would be so surprised the people who wait until the last freaking minute! It’s insane!! Totally applies to other times too though.

  32. Katja says:

    I’m guilty of doing all these things in my festival going times – lessons well and truly learned.
    Katja xxx
    http://www.katnapped.com

    • Tatum Skipper says:

      I can’t say I am not either but after writing this post I definitely made sure to watch myself!

  33. Viviane Feeney says:

    This is funny man! And smart. I have little experience at festies but perhaps attending a really good one like sziget or oktoberfest would be a good start!

    http://dreamtraveleat.blogspot.com.au/2017/05/the-best-things-in-life-are-simple-such.html

  34. A great read, It made me think of my teen years when I was into festivals before travelling took over that hobby. This would have been a great article for me personally back then 🙂

    • Tatum Skipper says:

      Even though traveling has taken over my life as well, I try to travel for some festivals to keep me young haha. You should go to one again!!

  35. Maggie says:

    Great list! I’m not a festival goer, but am forwarding this to my friend who goes constantly and has a few planned for this summer! I think the needy people comment applies to every day life. I can’t stand needy people!

    • Tatum Skipper says:

      Girlllll, me either!! They are especially bad at festivals! Definitely send it over to her!! Thanks angel!

  36. I don’t like loud crowds but your common sense tips were a lot of fun to read!

  37. Jamie says:

    The photo with all the trash is horrible! We see trash on our travels through National Parks and it just makes me sad. No matter where you travel, WATER is key so I guess it makes sense at festivals as well.

    • Tatum Skipper says:

      Isn’t it. It breaks my heart seeing people mistreat the environment like that! Water is definitely top on the list for a reason! So important!!

  38. This is so handy. I made so many of these mistakes at my first festival. Luckily I’ve learned as I’ve gone along! Could not agree with having a festival bestie more! Makes the whole thing go a lot smoother and you have someone to share the amazing experience with. x

    • Tatum Skipper says:

      Yeah me too, and sometimes I still make some of these mistakes but I have definitely learned to get better! Having a bestie is key so you can enjoy it without a huge group!

  39. I hate litter in general, but something about festivals it just makes me so much more angry. I went to the Korean version of Burning Man (KoreaBurn) and it was like everyone forgot a major rule of the festival (about waste). That particular time, I got too lit too early and had to put my bodypainted self to bed super early lol

    • Tatum Skipper says:

      Hahaha you got too lit huh? Yeah I tend to do that a lot oooooops. I had no idea they even had something like that in Korea! I need to brush up on my festivals!! A huge part of the whole Burning Man tradition is to leave no trace so I can’t believe people don’t follow that! It’s sad honestly.

  40. A nice read! I agree with all of your points. “Polluting the environment” is an important reminder to all of us.
    http://www.travelrealizations.com/

  41. Nice points! Not staying hydrated is one thing I face.. I usually end up passing out..
    Great tips for all the festival goers! 😀
    Thank You for sharing!

  42. Colleen says:

    These are great tips. I’ve always wanted to attend a festival and you made some valid points on ways to enjoy it to its full potential. Thanks for sharing.

  43. Chloe says:

    I love these tips! Especially staying hydrated is so important. I once fainted at a festival because I didn’t! Learnt my lesson

  44. Nicole says:

    Theses tips are awesome and I would have surely forgotten half of your list! Thanks !

  45. BonBon says:

    Music festivals are so much fun, though it can be so mess up too!!! Eeeeey… you’ve got really good tips:) Good piece…

  46. Jean says:

    Ah such a great guide! So many people fuck themselves up by not staying hydrated. Come on kids it aint that hard. Drink the water. Dance. Drink more water. Dance <- repeat!

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