Summer is almost here, and your calendar is filled with the hottest festivals of the season. Whether you’re new to the festival scene or they’re your summer tradition, it’s always good to have a checklist to make sure you remember the essentials. If you’re planning to stay for the whole festival, check out our festival checklist to ensure that you have everything you need.
In general, it is good to avoid overpacking. It’ll be easier to carry your belongings, and you’ll be less likely to forget something behind on the way home. With that in mind, this list may seem a little lengthy, so it may be a good idea to travel with a group. That way, except clothing, your friends can share the majority of the items listed.
The Absolute Necessities
Ticket – Without this, you’re going to be in a bit of a bind. Don’t forget it.
Driver’s license or state ID – Most likely they’ll check your ID for alcohol purchases, and so you can get inside.
Money – Some festivals have ATM’s or vendors, but they can be a pain to find. Skip the hassle and bring extra cash. Just remember to keep it in a safe place.
Tent – If you’re bringing a tent, always buy one that’s a little bigger to compensate for luggage. A good rule of thumb is to pick one that’s one person larger than your group.
Sleeping bags or air mattresses – You’ll want to sleep as comfortably as possible, and that can be difficult when sleeping in a tent on the ground. Bring a sleeping bag, air mattress, or both. If you bring an air mattress, just remember to bring a pump to inflate it.
Pillows and blankets – Again, you want to sleep comfortably. Bring a pillow and blankets if necessary.
Chairs – Spending all of your time crowd surfing is unlikely. You may want to bring some outdoor folding chairs so you and your friends can unwind in your spare time.
Coolers – If you plan on bringing cold drinks or perishable food, remember to bring a cooler and fill it with ice or ice packs.
Water bottles and water jugs – Many festivals have water but going out of your way to get some in crowds can be annoying. Instead, bring water jugs and use them to fill up your water bottle.
Toilet paper and wet wipes – Not that this needs much of an explanation, but you’ll feel better if you bring a couple of rolls.
Small stove – This item depends if your festival allows it or not, as many have started banning them for safety reasons. Spirit burners are a good replacement.
Pan – If you plan on bringing a stove, you should plan on bringing a pan. Just make sure it’s small.
Snacks – You’re not going to have all day to cook so bring some snacks along the way that don’t require a stove or microwave.
Plastic forks, spoons, knives – You can easily buy a small box of these at any drug store.
Lighter – If you’re planning on bringing a stove, bring a lighter. You might need it for some extracurricular activities.
Rain jacket and boots – The weather can unpredictable, and there’s always a chance that it will rain. So bring a rain jacket just in case. If it downpours, the grounds may become muddy so bringing a pair of rain boots can’t hurt. Your favorite pair of shoes will thank you later.
Sweatshirts and sweatpants – Depending on the location of the festival, it may be chilly during the early morning or night. Bring a few layers of extra clothing to keep yourself warm, especially if that region is known to cool down in the summer months.
Avoid denim and leather – You want to bring clothes that are airy and dry easily. Denim, leather and other fabrics aren’t proper clothes to bring to festivals because they retain moisture.
Comfortable shoes – You’re going to be on your feet about ninety percent of the day, so bring shoes that you know won’t give you blisters.
Spare socks and underwear – It’s summer. Your festival is most likely going to be hot and muggy, so bring extra socks and underwear to feel as comfortable as possible.
Health and Safety
Sunscreen – Don’t get a sunburn. Just don’t do it. Make sure you bring a full bottle of sunscreen.
Hand sanitizer – You won’t have the luxury of washing your hands in a sink. If you’re going to be cooking and eating snacks, remember to bring hand sanitizer to kill any germs before handling food.
First aid kit – Festivals are full of crazy people packed in close proximity you. Things can get a little out of hand sometimes, and chances are you’re going to get some cuts and bruises. Bringing a first aid kit with antiseptic wipes and bandages will be a life saver.
Medications – Advil, Tylenol, Excedrin Migraine, you name it. Bring some with you. If you have a headache or some other type of ailment, it’s going to be a long day if you don’t have anything to ease the pain.
Phone – You don’t want to forget this if you plan on using social media and communicating with you friends.
Camera – If your phone is not enough, remember to bring a camera. Keep it in a sturdy bag, so it doesn’t get damaged. If you’re planning to take a lot of pictures and videos, bring a handful of SD cards.
Chargers – Whatever electronic device you take with you, make sure it has a charger and an adapter. You might be able to connect them to a car or large external battery. Check once, twice, and even three times to make sure you have a charger for each device.