Festival essentials

Posted on: 22 June 2011 by Rhian Mainwaring

Glastonbury – puhh, we were there the first time round!

Festival survival guide

Festival season is finally here, so whether your a seasoned festival goer or this is your first time make sure you read our survival guide to make sure your trip isn’t a total washout!

With the Eagles headlining the laid-back Hop Farm Festival in Kent, Jack Johnson at the Eden Sessions, Status Quo and Ray Davies at Cornbury Festival and the likes of Ringo Starr, Simple Minds and Jools Holland topping the entertainment at Hampton Court Palace Festival, there really is something for everyone. For those with more orchestral tastes, there are even classical music festivals, such as the Three Choirs Festival in Worcester.  

So once you’ve booked your festival tickets it’s time to start preparing, so on top of the obvious choices – toilet roll, raincoat, as much alcohol as you can carry, wet wipes – don’t forget these items to put the glam in camping.

  • Airbed or sleeping mat – Sleep is precious at a festival, so it helps to do all you can to make it as comfortable as possible – these will cushion your back from lumpy ground and keep you warmer on chilly nights. You can buy all-in-one packs so once your bed is blown up your duvet, cushions and sheets are already there. Go to Argos for a selection.
  • Camping stove – Imagine, delicious sausages or warm soup cooked right by your tent. However, bear in mind that washing up at a festival can be a chore, so bring a stash of paper plates and cutlery. You can get camping stoves from as little as £9.99 from Amazon.
  • Blanket or rug – Saves you from a muddy seat and perfect as an extra layer if the temperatures drop. The PVC-backed variety are ideal - you’ll be grateful for the water-resistant layer.
  • Your own supply of alcohol - Cut down festival costs and queuing time by stocking up before-hand. Check the festival rules on alcohol allowance first – some won’t let you bring your own in. Most don’t allow glass bottles either, so cans or boxed-wine are ideal .
  • Dry shampoo – A perfect quick-fix to keep you looking at your festival best. A spritz of this powdered magic can give hair a new lease of life. Boots stock a selection of dry shampoo, Batiste is the nation's favourite!
  • Camping chairs – Rest aching feet by chilling back in a camping chair, they’re surprisingly comfy and definitely beat sitting on a wet floor. Read our article on picnic accessories for outdoor goodies.
  • Pillow – Yes, a rolled up jumper can do the trick, but nothing beats resting your head on your favourite pillow. 
  • Camping shower – You may be at a festival, but it doesn’t mean you can’t look (and smell) your best. These nifty devices mean you don’t have to queue for showers to have a fresh start each day. For just £2.50 you can beat the crowds with acamping shower from Amazon.
  • Earplugs and eye mask – The key to a sleeping well at festivals is being able to block out any noise and light to create your very own peaceful oasis. These two items will give you a great start.
  • Camper Van – Why not go all-out and hire a camper for the occasion? The ultimate in camping comfort, this will keep you warm and dry and may even offer the means to make yourself a warming cup of tea each morning. You can rent anything from a VW Camper van to a 6 birth luxury RV from sundrivehire.co.uk, with price starting at around £250.

What not to pack

Don’t be tempted to take anything that you’d hate to lose or have soaked in beer and mud. Most festivals have lock-ups where you can stash car keys or precious items that you need to keep safe. If you need to stay in touch with friends, leave your expensive phone at home and grab a cheap mobile to take with you – not only will it save you a fortune if it gets dropped or lost, but the battery life will last longer too. 

Yes, festivals can be a bit of a catwalk but don’t be tempted to overdo it with outfits. The key is layering, which means that come rain or... well rain, you’ll have plenty of layers to keep you warm and plenty of options to keep you looking the part. Wellies are a must, they’re practical and trendy and a festival must, as are head bands or scarves to channel the seventies revival and hide mud soaked hair.  Click here for our must-have festival fashion!

Are you heading to any festivals this year? Which is your favourite? Let us know below...

For more information on this summer’s festivals and details on sold out event tickets see www.getmein.com

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