How to survive a music festival

How to survive a music festival

Tips from a pro

Text: Priya Dewan

Image: Stanley Donwood - Facebook | Glastonbury Festival (official),
Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival,
Derry Ainsworth - Facebook | Clockenflap,
Instagram | @stuff.we.did

Priya Dewan, founder of Gig Life Asia is someone you'd trust to take care of your travel and music festival packages. Here are 5 tips from the seasoned festival goer

1. Check the weather and pack accordingly!
You know you're going to fight the wet and chill to see your favorite artist, and you don't want a cold or flu to remember the day by. This is especially important if you're going to European, Korean or Japanese festivals this summer — the days may be sunny and warm, but once the sun drops, the temperatures can drop severely. I have a great thin, red rain parka from Zara I carry with me to most festivals.

We The Fest, 2016
2. Make sure you read the festival's rules on what you can and cannot bring into the venue
If you have to go home to drop off items you can't bring, you may miss an artist you were excited to see. I wish I had known that Clockenflap Festival in Hong Kong allows umbrellas!  It uncharacteristically poured last year for a full day and I spent most of the festival huddled under a tent and missed a few acts I wanted to catch. 

Clockenflap, 2016
3. Get some alone time  
As much as I love experiencing a festival with friends, it's great to wander around a festival ground solo for a while. I went to Pentaport Festival in Seoul by myself a couple of summers ago and it was such a great experience! I was completely in control of my schedule and was able to see all of the artists I wanted to. On top of that, strangers kept approaching and befriending me, welcoming me into their group of friends and inviting me into their festival experience.

Pentaport, 2016
4. Bring cash
A lot of festivals are moving to RFID payment so that you have cashless transactions when purchasing food and beverage, but those RFID wristbands need to be topped up with cash or card. I always have cash just in case there is an issue with the credit card terminal onsite. I was at Equation earlier this year and totally blanked on this rule. It's a three-day camping festival, 90 minutes from Hanoi and by the end of day two I was cashless! Luckily, I found my friend Mikhail from Manila who lent me some cash that allowed me to eat and drink for the next 24 hours. 

Equation, 2016
5. Come hungry!
I have noticed an amazing gourmet fast food trend showing up at festivals where some of the cities' best come together to feed the party masses.  I like to have at least one buddy who shares in this joy to split dishes and try multiple vendors with. If you're headed to Fuji Rock in Japan this summer you must try the wagyu burger at Tokoro Tengoku! 

Tokoro Tengoku at Fuji Rock, 2016

Find out more about GigLifeAsia's latest music festival packages.