19 Experts Share Their Best Music Festival Packing List Tips

Going to a music festival, you always have to think hard about what to bring and what to leave at home.

You want to bring everything you need, but at the same time you don’t want to bring a lot of stuff, so it will be hard to carry everything.

To help more festival goers pack the right things, we have talked with 19 festival experts!

We have asked them to share all their best packing list advice, so you will get to know exactly what to pack and what to leave at home.

Read on and learn the experts best tips and tricks (the 19 experts here have been to hundreds of festivals, so they know what they are talking about!)


The 18 Music Festival Experts


Stephanie Rosa


  • Around 100 festivals
  • Favorite festival: Glastonbury UK

What top 3 things do you always bring to festivals besides the common stuff everybody bring?

Being a festival goer is truly an art. The standard things to pack of course include food, water, clothing for cold and hot weather, and those who love sleep know to always bring a sleep mask and ear plugs. But those of us who have been time and time again know that theres a few more things that can improve the festival experience by just planning ahead.

  • A solar charging station. Battery packs are clunky and a thing of the past! Rather than let that little stick die out after a single charge, solar powered chargers and backpacks can provide charge all day. All you have to do is be outside, get dancing or explore the festival grounds.
  • Hand fans. This is one of my favorite things to bring to a festival because you look stylish with one, its fully functional and will make instant friends. To me, nothing is worse than standing front and center during your favorite performance but feeling like you may drown in your own sweat. Fans will cool you down, cool down everyone around you and look great in photos.
  • LIGHTS. At Burning Man, its common knowledge that going out into the dark without lights is a BIG no no. Especially because you can get run over by an art car or a swarm of bicycles. Unfortunately in the festival world, we forget how important lights are for safety. Walkways to the camp areas are sometimes lit, and sometimes not. Portopotties at night are usually a place that you don’t want to be for fear of whats around. Invest in a small $5 pocket flashlight to solve all these problems! It’ll be a great way for people to see you walking so they don’t run into you, its a great tool in the portopotty and even helps if you’re rummaging for your ear plugs at the bottom of your backpack!

How do you bring your stuff to festivals?

I am a big fan of car camping, so I usually don’t put too much thought into how I bring my stuff to the festival. I will use a suitcase or dufflebag, depending on what I need for the weekend. However, how i pack inside of those bags is what keeps me organized!

I know that there is usually a lot of dust at festivals, and I also know that I love to be out of the camping area and exploring somewhere. Rather than waste time picking out outfits each day and rummaging through my things, I pick out all of my outfits before… and then I bag them in used grocery bags. I’ll include all my neccesities for that day… biodegradable glitter, hand fans, sunglasses, etc. so that its all in one spot. This allows me to access my things quickly for that day without getting my other clothes dirty or wrecking my suitcase to find something.

To go into the festival grounds itself I typically use a backpack. I have clear backpacks, hydration packs for water and a solar powered backpack I’ll swap between.

How do you protect your stuff against the elements?

Many concerts these days have strict rules on what you can and cannot bring into a venue. A lot of them have started to require clear bags to enter, so I got a clear vinyl clutch for these scenarios. To my excitement, I realized one day that this great little clutch serves as a waterproof case for my phone and electronics at festivals. Now I’ll use that little vinyl clutch as a wallet and throw it in my backpack for the weekend and I’ll throw my phone in there when it starts to drizzle.

As far as the transition from hot to freezing cold, I usually plan two outfits each day or throw on a Spirit Hood to keep me nice and toasty in the evening.

Always keep your stuff within eye sight to avoid thieves and jerks, and make sure that you have a backpack that its tough to open (meaning if someone were to try, you’d feel it).



Heather Schlueter


  • About a dozen festivals
  • Favorite festival: Country Thunder

What top 3 things do you always bring to festivals besides the common stuff everybody bring?

Food! We typically go to multi-day festivals with a group and I plan and prep the food. I make sure we have lots of quick grab and go snacks (hard boiled eggs are a favorite), as well as hearty evening meals.

My Kindle! It’s great for the downtime between acts! (Yeah, I’m kind of a nerd…)

Lots of board games. Our group loves them and we typically play in the mornings before the music gets underway. (Um… some of the just may turn into drinking games…. Just sayin’!)

How do you bring your stuff to festivals?

This has evolved over time. I used packing cubes for my last music festival and they were great! I used to just throw everything in one bag, but the packing cubes were so much better organized! Loved it! I don’t typically walk around with a smaller bag but most people I’m with carry drawstring backpacks for our stuff.

How do you protect your stuff against the elements?

Most of the music festivals I attend are in the desert so not much in the way of rain, but when it rains, it REALLY rains! I definitely prep my shoes (boots) with water repellant. And I now throw a rain poncho in my bag just in case. When we bring a generator we usually have a plastic bag around it when we’re not using it. And we lock it up to keep it away from stupid thieves. I definitely want to get a dry sack to make it easy to protect cell phones, headphones, etc. just in case we get a desert downpour!


Dave Anderson


  • 80+ festivals
  • Favorite festival: Groove Cruise

What top 3 things do you always bring to festivals besides the common stuff everybody bring?

I think bringing fun outfits are super important for festivals! While not every festival is a “costume party”, it’s crucial to dress a little different then you normally would. Festivals are meant to be a place of freedom and self-expression, and I think festival outfits are an important aspect of that.

My outfits are always seem to lead me to meeting cool people. Someone will come up to me and compliment my festival gear, and then the rest is history 🙂

Another fun item can be a spray water bottle (depending on the temperature). I was at a festival in Australia, and it reached insane temperatures during the day, and having that was so fun. Spray people, spray yourself, and keep cool.

Finally – one of my most important things is a portable charger. My phone battery dies fast (damn you iPhone!), and having enough battery to chat with friends / figure out plans is essential.

How do you bring your stuff to festivals?

I pack all my stuff in a suitcase (depending on the festival), and then always carry a backpack around the festival. I don’t like having things in my pockets at festivals, so will keep my phone, camera, chargers, sunglasses, shirt, gum, etc all in my backpack.

I’ve never found the need for Packing Cubes, but I try not to overpack for festivals. I don’t have too many wardrobe changes, but I’m just a very minimalistic person.

How do you protect your stuff against the elements?

I think I’m pretty lucky because I haven’t had too many bad experiences with the “elements”. Having proper cover your tent / belongings is crucial obviously. I had a tent and a canopy, and when it rained one year at a festival called Return To RIo…I kept all my stuff dry easily.

To be honest – I never lock up my stuff too much. I trust the festival vibes to protect me from thiefs, lol. If something does get stolen — it’s bad karma for them. With that being said – I do try to hide my valuables in secret spots, and have though about getting a lock for my tent.

I also normally bring a Poncho if there’s a chance of rain!


April Bishop


  • 5 festivals
  • Favorite festival: Download Festival

What top 3 things do you always bring to festivals besides the common stuff everybody bring?

My Dr Martens are definitely a must for festivals. I don’t like wearing wellies but often end up getting stuck in ankle deep mud. They’re the perfect middle ground, look good with any outfit and always keep my feet dry.

One thing we bring every year is a small plastic ball for a drinking game we call Gazebo ball or simply a phone to play ‘Picolo’. The first night of a festival generally tends to be family night, where we spend time together just having fun and playing drinking games, which tends to be some of the best memories from the weekend.

My last must have is simply, a pillow. My friend left early last year, leaving me her pillow and it was the best nights sleep of any festival. Usually I’d take a travel pillow and put the neck ache and awful sleep down to having to camp for 5 nights. However, I will definitely be taking a full size pillow from now on!

How do you bring your stuff to festivals?

I always use a typical hiking backpack for festivals which fits my clothes, toiletries, food and some canned cocktails. I then pack all of my sleeping stuff (pillow, blanket, sleeping bag and camping airbed) together and carry these in with my camping chair on the first trip. This gives me enough to get set up and have a drink before going back for the rest of my drink and any other items in the car.

I use smaller bags to keep items like my make up and toiletries separate and together, and use the different compartments in my backpack to keep organised and pack my stuff away daily to keep the tent tidy. I also always take carrier bags for dirty laundry and to make a bin for our tent.

I don’t like to take a bag into the arena so anything I need I tend to pack in the pockets of my coat, which I always make sure has big enough pockets.

How do you protect your stuff against the elements?

In all honestly, I don’t do a lot to protect myself. I take a lightweight rain mac, and buy a cheap poncho to layer over it as the hoods on women’s coats tend to be very small. I also pack a couple pairs of leggings to put under my jeans and extra socks to layer up. At night I like to make sure I have comfy cosy pyjamas to wear, and take a cheap blanket from Primark to wrap myself up with inside my sleeping bag. For the heat I just always make sure I take suncream and a pair of shorts.

Protecting myself from thieves has never really been an issue as Download seems to be one of the least problematic festivals. I read that putting locks on your tent entices thieves more, so I just don’t take anything super valuable that I would be devastated to lose.

The only thing I’ve had ruined at a festival is a disposable camera I was carrying around in my coat pocket. The rain got inside it so when I had the photos developed a lot of them were ruined. If I was to use one again I’d probably take a zipbag to protect it.


Nealey Stapleton


  • 10 festivals
  • Favorite festival: Bonnaroo

What top 3 things do you always bring to festivals besides the common stuff everybody bring?

  • Baby wipes – Absolute must. Whether it’s mud or layers of sunscreen or dirty hands or what have you, baby wipes are downright essential.
  • Spare car keys – Anything can happen so make sure you are able to get into your car, even if you’ve locked yourself out. Keep a spare set of car keys hidden in your tent.
  • Ziploc bags – I carry my cell phone around in a Ziploc bag to protect it from dust and water damage. That’s just one super valuable use, so make sure you bring a bunch.
  • BONUS: Get a set of jumper cables. If you don’t remember to start your car every day, then it might not start at all when you’re very ready to leave (and take a shower).
  • BONUS: Spray fan!!!!!! Seriously. Go to CVS or your local grocery store and buy a spray fan. They are unbelievably effective during those hot, humid, sweaty, sunny festival days.

How do you bring your stuff to festivals?

My fanny pack is an absolute must! I use it to keep my phone, chapstick, money and other essentials handy as we are walking around. My husband usually wears a backpack for the bigger stuff like water bottles, paper towels, sunscreen, spray fans and so on. To keep the campsite organized, we bring everything already organized in plastic drawers.

How do you protect your stuff against the elements?

We always lock anything valuable in the car and hide it out of sight. To keep small things dry, we use ziploc bags. We use tarps to cover our tents and as canopy sides to keep everything inside dry and shaded.


Evan


  • 40+ festivals
  • Favorite festival: Coachella

What top 3 things do you always bring to festivals besides the common stuff everybody bring?

I always bring face wipes, pedia lyte and a GoPro

Thousands of people tramping over grass + dry weather = lots of dust. Keep the dust off your face with Neutrogena or Garnier face wipes. Also, you can soak a wash cloth in the cooler water and use it to cool of your face and neck.

Pedialyte is the best drink for rehydrating. Nothing can ruin a festival faster than being tired, sick and dehydrated. Bring the pedialyte powder and pour it into a water bottle, it tastes great too!

GoPros are compact, durable and great for capturing memories at a music festival.

How do you bring your stuff to festivals?

I pack my things in a bacpack and then leave it in a locker that I rent. Most festivals have day lockers, but don’t leave valuables in them over night.

I also have a small neck pouch that I keep small items in like my ear plugs, chapstick and cash.

How do you protect your stuff against the elements?

Always bring a hat and sunglasses to a festival like Coachella! Sunscreen is a must. A sunburn is one of the quickest ways to ruin a festival!


Helene Sula


  • 12+ festivals
  • Favorite festival: Tomorrowland in Belgium

What top 3 things do you always bring to festivals besides the common stuff everybody bring?

Good Ear plugs are essential. You’ll need them for the festival, of course, unless you you want hearing loss! And they are also good if it’s a camping festival and you want to drown out the noise around you.

Camelbak to hold water. Many festivals allow you to bring in an empty water bottle or camelback to fill up at their fountains. This not only saves you money, it ensures you stay hydrated throughout the event.

Wet wipes re the perfect on-the-go shower. Sometimes you just want to freshen up and having a wet wipe can remove makeup, dirt, refresh your skin, and leave you feeling ready to party.

How do you bring your stuff to festivals?

I always carry a backpack because it can expand or shrink down if needed. I pack in layers based on what I’ll be wearing next. So, for a three day festival, the outfit for day 3 is on the bottom, day 2 on the top, and day 1 is either on my body or the top of my suitcase. I bring a plastic bag for dirty clothes and keep that in the side of my backpack.

How do you protect your stuff against the elements?

I always bring a lightweight rain jacket which protects from the elements and also helps if it gets chilly at night. I carry a zipped cross-body bag which I keep on me at all times and deters thieves from grabbing my wallet. I only carry essentials in my wallet: some cash, id, sunscreen, and lipstick.


Beth Jones


  • Too many festivals to count
  • Favorite festival: Shambala

What top 3 things do you always bring to festivals besides the common stuff everybody bring?

The most important thing to pack is sparkly outfits, what would a festival be without sequins, glitter (bio-degradable of course!) and feathers! Creating an outfit is a huge part of the festival experience so go wild. Just be sure to pack those wellies as well, because if it turns into a mud bath, you’ll be like Bambi without them.

For larger festivals, like Glastonbury, a great thing to pack are walkie-talkies, so you can communicate with all your friends. Trying to make sure your phone is charged, safe and in signal is a nightmare, so it’s best to revert to radio waves! They can be so much fun but remember to take plenty of (re-chargeable) batteries and dish a few out to your best mates before you head off in search of your favourite music.

And finally, I always make sure I have my reusable water canister. Keeping hydrated is one of the most important parts of the festival, it means you have plenty of energy to carry on dancing! At some of the festivals, like Shambala, you can buy a reusable bottle and carry pouch, so you never have to be without water.

How do you bring your stuff to festivals?

When we were younger we would take a backpack and lug everything from tents, booze, food, outfits, etc across fields to get the perfect pitch. Then we upgraded to a sack cart, which is great if the ground is OK, but if it’s muddy you may as well give up before you begin. Now, we’re in our 30s, we take our campervan, called Winston. He’s usually full of Pirate’s Grog Rum, ice, cocktail equipment, cooking equipment, boxes of clothes, a memory foam mattress and loads more.

How do you protect your stuff against the elements?

Having a campervan makes life easy when it comes to all of the above, but zipbags and dry sacks are always handy and are great for when you’re inside the festival too. Always pack warm sleeping gear and a couple of extra jumpers in case it gets wet or really cold at night.


Billi Jo Hart


  • 40+ festivals
  • Favorite festival: Summer Camp, Sonic Bloom or Electric Forest

What top 3 things do you always bring to festivals besides the common stuff everybody bring?

P-Style and a handy baby wipe dispenser attachment for my fanny pack. Port-a-potty’s get really gross and having these makes using the bathroom SO much easier.

Vitamin C, Electrolyte packets and other basic first aids items in fanny pack at all times. You’ll come across others in need, and you’ll be thankful you have items to help.

Drug testing kit. If you partake, ALWAYS test your stuff. However, drug use always carries a dangerous risk.

How do you bring your stuff to festivals?

Depends on the festival:

Drive in: Things are packed away in handy plastic shelving units for organization.

Carry-in: I’ll take it in on a wagon. Food and basic goods are packed into plastic totes so they’re easy to stack. I’ll use a hiking backpack to carry in my clothing.

I have a fanny pack I’ll carry around that has my baby wipes, p-style and basic first aid items as well as a flash light, chapstick, sun screen and money. My boyfriend carries the camel back with any other supplies we might need.

How do you protect your stuff against the elements?

I have specialty rain bags for my camera equipment and any other electronics that work well to guard against dirt as well. I’ll padlock my tent.

My camera bag has locks on every zipper and if it’s not by my side, it’s locked away in the media tent on site.

My first year as a shooter for a newspaper my tent got washed away due to poor planning. Always set up on high ground and make sure to stake your tent down properly!

If you have expensive stuff, keep it locked in your car if it’s not by your side if you don’t have access to a media tent.


Pratishtha Shrotriya Khan


  • 6-7 festivals
  • Favorite festival: Ziro Festical, Arunanchal Pradesh

What top 3 things do you always bring to festivals besides the common stuff everybody bring?

  • A small sheet to sit on, since standing for long can be tiring. I usually also carry a neck pillow whenever it’s allowed. Trust me, after hours of reckless dancing, lying down for a break can improve your overall festival experience by miles.
  • A torchlight, because a walk back from the festival can get you into some not so well-lit spots. While walking back to our camp from the Ziro Festival, our torchlight really helped us maneuver the patchy roads filled with puddles.
  • Toilet seat sanitizer spray. Those public toilets, used by thousands, are NOT to be sat upon without a thorough cleaning. Also carry a small pack of tissues, as most festivals run out of them really fast.

How do you bring your stuff to festivals?

It’s always a backpack to be used for camping. I try to keep my stuff minimal, as my primary purpose at the festival is to enjoy the music and the vibe. The best way to pack is to keep your stuff organised day-wise in cloth bags. Keep a few ziplocks for used and dirty clothes. Pack travel sized toiletries and keep them in the top pocket all good backpacks have.

Always have a small backpack or a sling bag for walking around at the festival. You need to keep your hands unoccupied while dancing.

How do you protect your stuff against the elements?

Oh, rain is the worst festival destroyer! And a backpack cover and ziplock bags are your best bets against the water. Minimize electronics when the weather forecast shows rain. Pack your phone, your wallet in small ziplock bags. Keep a backpack cover handy. If you don’t have one available, trust me, even regular trash bags work well.

I have never really been out in extreme heat or cold, so no real inputs there. When it comes to thieves, I always choose a trusted camp or property, which provides a locker room. Best choice is to keep your valuables with you, in a small bag, worn in front, instead of at the back. Sorry, it’s not glamorous, but having your stuff stoles sucks. Solo women, please carry a pepper spray.

The less you carry, lesser the probability of your stuff getting ruined/stolen. Resist the temptation to overload your backpack. have fun, but watch your back. Move around with a group. Basic precautions.


Man with box on his head

Ames Peniston


  • 15 festivals
  • Favorite festival: Bonnaroo

What top 3 things do you always bring to festivals besides the common stuff everybody bring?

  • A flag from my home country – great for shade and warmth as well as making new friends.
  • Campsite decorations – make it easy to identify which tent is yours.
  • Extra food and drink to share with your neighbors.

How do you bring your stuff to festivals?

I use coolers to transport my stuff because they can also keep things cold if you’re able to purchase ice at the festival. Plus you can use them as tables in your campsite.

Avoid paper or plastic grocery bags as these tend to be forgotten outside the tent overnight and can fill with rain water or dew.

Bring lots of ziplock baggies to keep things organized (and dry) in your backpack. And don’t forget to bring trash bags for cleanup.

How do you protect your stuff against the elements?

If you’re in a tent, condensation can cause everything to get soaking wet even if it’s not actually raining. Water also pools in tarps on the ground. Be sure to put your valuables and suitcases in trash bags to prevent them from getting wet. And bring your shoes inside the tent at night.

Hats are your best friend for not getting burnt. Definitely bring a camelbak for staying hydrated. Most festivals allow you to bring an empty water bottle inside the venue that you can fill up throughout the day (and night), saving yourself a ton of money.

And last, I recommend bringing extra layers, especially at night. After breaking a sweat in the crowd there’s nothing better than having a warm jacket for the long walk back to your tent.


Jess Hunt-Ralston


  • Around 8 festivals
  • Favorite festival: Shaky Beats Festival

What top 3 things do you always bring to festivals besides the common stuff everybody bring?

There are four tiny lifesavers that I always bring into festivals: foam earplugs, facial tissue, lip balm, and a small plastic baggie. Earplugs are often expensive on-site, restrooms are often out of toilet paper, and a freezer bag is a fool-proof way to protect your phone from unexpected rain showers. In a pinch, lip balm can also temporarily stop chaffing and soothe a sunburn.

If staying overnight at the festival I’d add a few toiletries: natural baby wipes, a first aid kit, insect repellent, aloe vera, vitamins, and a couple of lightweight Turkish towels to the list. Everyone remembers the basics like portable battery packs, blankets, and food and water, but we sometimes forget about those small comfort items that keep us feeling healthy and clean.

A camping headlamp is one last item that’s often overlooked. Flashlight apps are blindingly bright and drain your phone battery while a headlamp is an inexpensive, hands-free helper.

How do you bring your stuff to festivals?

I have two rules: Pack nothing precious, and pack light to travel well. Whether glamping at a weekend music festival or spending a few weeks in Europe, I try to pare down to a lightweight duffle bag, a small backpack, and a small crossbody purse.

I use freezer bags to keep things organized — gallon bags for clothes and electronics, grocery bags for shoes and dirty clothes, and sandwich bags for toiletries and smaller items. They cost and weigh virtually nothing and keep everything organized, fresh, and dry.

Dr. Bronner’s makes a natural castile soap that I bring along to wash up and to wash clothes. It’s so much easier to hand wash clothing and air dry overnight than to keep up with enough clean clothes to last an entire trip. You can also brush your teeth with a couple drops of it!

Only the purse goes with me into the festival. Inside it you’ll find an iPhone, cash, credit cards and ID, plus those four tiny lifesavers — earplugs, tissue, lip balm, and a baggie. If there’s rain in the forecast or it’s cold out, I ditch the purse altogether and pack these items into the inner pockets of a rain jacket, down vest, or waxed cotton coat.

How do you protect your stuff against the elements?

I always think of that saying, “There’s no such thing as bad weather, only bad gear.”

Bring along clothes you can layer, plus a hat and a bandana that doubles as a scarf and headband — the merino wool Buff is my favorite for this. Invest in solid shoes and a good rain jacket that’s well-reviewed online. Try to stick to natural materials like linen, wool, and cotton for most of your clothes. These materials are typically very breathable, temperature-regulating, and tend to dry quickly after a hand wash or downpour.

A few years ago during my bachelorette trip we actually had to evacuate Firefly Festival due to severe weather. Although our tent bottoms were tarped, torrential rain began flooding campsites as 60 MPH winds rolled in. We grabbed a box of heavy duty trash bags and frantically tossed everything into bags before tying them off and seeking shelter in a nearby building. Early the next morning we returned to find a very muddy campsite with completely clean and dry bags of clothes and food.

You’ll also want to install an app like Find My iPhone on your phone and a friend’s phone. Commit your login details to memory so that if a phone is misplaced or stolen, you can use one phone to locate the other. Bring along as little cash as possible and use your phone, credit card, or even a pre-paid Visa gift card for purchases.

The best way to protect something against theft at a festival is to just leave it at home. The second best way is to keep it locked in the trunk of your car. At the campsite it’s helpful to make friends with your neighbors, stash belongings underneath non-tempting items like food, and to generally make your tent look as boring and understated as possible.

The key here is to bring along as few valuables as possible while making sure you have everything you need to be comfortable and enjoy the music.



Ewa Harr


  • Over 25 festivals
  • Favorite festival: Rooster Walk, The Festy Experience, Red Wing Roots, and Hoopla in Virginia

What top 3 things do you always bring to festivals besides the common stuff everybody bring?

Attending music festivals with kids makes for a long packing list. When our kids were younger, a potty and nightlight made camping a lot easier. Since mommy and daddy are coffee addicts, we usually bring either a French press or Starbucks Doubleshot Espressos so we can wake up with the kids in the morning and not have to immediately go buy coffee. A roll up rug or mat so the kids have a playspace at the campsite has been crucial. And never underestimate the importance of raingear, including raincoats, rain pants, and rain boots for the whole family – some festivals can be wet and muddy! Also, ear pro was a lifesaver when the kids were younger.

How do you bring your stuff to festivals?

Plastic bins mostly – they are easy to stack and keep water and bugs out. We each carry a backpack or shoulder bag at the festival and tote the kiddos around in a wagon.

How do you protect your stuff against the elements?

Tarps, ziploc bags, plastic bins. We’ve never had anything stolen from our personal camping area. We’ve had rain/mud ruin some things in our work area, but that is just the nature of outdoor camping, life, festivals!


Victoria Philpott


  • 50 festivals
  • Favorite festival: Glastonbury Festival

What top 3 things do you always bring to festivals besides the common stuff everybody bring?

Travel Johns are great for when you need the toilet in the night and can’t face the walk over there. Always take a torch to check your toilet out first, to check for cleanliness. And make sure to bring plenty of layers to deal with the change in temperature you always get at festivals.

How do you bring your stuff to festivals?

I take an Osprey backpack which has the functionality to be used as a pully suitcase too. It’s good because it gives the option to drag it, if the weather is ok. If not, I can just hoist it on my back. Sometimes you have to queue for a long time at festivals so having the option to put it on the floor makes sense too. I always take a smaller backpack to carry round the festival too.

How do you protect your stuff against the elements?

I don’t take anything precious to festivals, and will always check in my camera too. Most festivals have a secure site, or a lock up, where it’s safe. I don’t leave anything of any interest in the tent either. And as for elements, wear layers and take a rain coat!


Jason and Kelly Law


  • Too many festivals to count (12 festivals in 2017)
  • Favorite festival: Strings & Sol + Blue Ox Music Festival

What top 3 things do you always bring to festivals besides the common stuff everybody bring?

  • Duct Tape: We bring the fun, colored duct tape to every festival. Not only does it help mend things in a pinch, but you can make awesome decorations, too! Jason likes to make a bunch of duct tape bowties for all of our camping buddies and neighbors.
  • Shade Canopy: Besides our tent, we always bring an extra pop-up canopy to set up. It is vital for several reasons. It means you can lock down a few extra square feet around your campsite when you are setting up. It gives you shade and a place to relax between the music sets. And if there’s a rainy day, you have a dry place to hang out. BONUS: When the sun rises and you start to bake in your tent, you can roll out onto the blanket under the shade canopy and get a few extra zzz’s without baking to death.
  • Decorations: We love to make our camping space bright and colorful! Whether it’s streamers, toys, flags, or tapestries – we strive to make our camping area unique! We love to decorate with strings of lights (which also helps create a chill, fun space to hang out after the music.) Plus, when your campsite looks fun, you have a better chance of meeting new friends because they want to come check it out!

How do you bring your stuff to festivals?

We use mostly large and small plastic bins to keep our camping and festival stuff organized. We have separate bins for kitchen/cooking supplies, tent supplies, decorations, etc. We keep everything in these bins and store them in our garage at home – that way it is already together and ready when you are packing to go to a festival!

We have a foldable wagon that we like to bring with us to festivals. It makes it easier to transport your items from your car to your camping space (if there isn’t car camping available). If the water supply is far away, it makes it nice to have something to drag our big 5-gallon water container. Plus, we can use it for storage – it helps organize our kitchen items and keeps things off the ground.

We use small backpacks for going to the festivals – something big enough to carry a rain jacket or hoodie and a reusable water bottle (or camelbak). Don’t forget your flashlight(or headlamp) and music schedule!

How do you protect your stuff against the elements?

We always try to be prepared for all of the elements – rain, heat, cold, etc.

Proper footwear can completely save your music festival. We have used our rubber rainboots more times than we can count. Not only do they keep your feet dry, warm and protected, but they can be a really fun accessory, too! Don’t just wear cheap flip-flops all weekend long and expect your feet to be dancing still by the end of the festy.

Pack your rainfly for your tent! And bring extra tarps. We’ve made an entire wooded area rainproof for about 50 campers just by using tying a bunch of tarps throughout the trees. Not only does it provide protection from rain, but it is a reprieve from the sweltering sun as well.

Keep your cell phone in a resealable storage bag. You’ll be happy you did when it starts to rain and you are out dancing around!

For the heat, make sure you have lots of electrolytes packed. We like to use the dissolvable tablets to just add to our water. (Takes up less space, and no added sugar!) Bring sunblock and a good hat, set up good shade at your campsite, and a spray mister/fan is always a bonus!

You never know when it is going to get cold! Even summer festivals may turn chilly at night. For the cold, we always suggest lots of layers. Thin thermals don’t take up much space, but they can be a lifesaver when the temperatures drop at night. Wear wool, and not cotton (especially with your socks)! Hand warmers, gloves, and hats all take up very little space but help out tremendously. We like to throw in a few extra blankets, too!



Taylor Pittman Hardy


  • 8 festivals
  • Favorite festival: CMA Fest

What top 3 things do you always bring to festivals besides the common stuff everybody bring?

The first thing I pack when heading to a music festival, is my portable charger. I got one two years ago and it has truly changed my life. Before, I would have to break up my day so that I could go back to the hotel and let my phone charge (taking videos and pictures for the blog while simultaneously uploading them to social media drains your phone battery!). Now, when my phone needs charged, I just pull out my mobile charger and hook it up to my phone.

One year at CMA Fest, I skipped going to charge my phone in the middle of the day because I thought it would last through the evening. Dierks Bentley walked onto the stage to close out the night and the moment I opened my camera, my phone died.

It sounds weird, but I always pack a beach towel. It can be used to dry off if it rains, if you need an impromptu place to sit, or need to wipe sand off of your feet (I HATE having sand in my shoes).

Another fun thing to bring to a music festival is a deck of cards. If you’re sitting at one stage all day, waiting for sets to change is really boring. Use this time to play cards! It gives you something to do and you can play with the people sitting around you and make some new friends.

How do you bring your stuff to festivals?

We pack our stuff in a backpack. I have a really nice husband who carries it around for me 🙂 I load it down with everything that we might possibly need during the day so that we are prepared for whatever situation arrises. Our backpack has pockets, so it does a good job of keeping things organized for us. From tissues to hand sanitizer, USB cords to rain jackets, I always have it all.

How do you protect your stuff against the elements?

For the festivals we go to, rain is our biggest concern. Our backpack fits under our rain jacket while wearing it, which is nice, but I usually keep a poncho in the backpack so we can just cover it up if we’re sitting at a stage. I also keep a Ziploc bag or two handy so we can put our electronics in it if there’s a downpour.


Katie


  • 5+ festivals
  • Favorite festival: Stagecoach

What top 3 things do you always bring to festivals besides the common stuff everybody bring?

  • Travel sized sunscreen – I’ve had large bottles of sunscreen taken away at festivals, but I always need it! So, I’ll usually bring a small version because it doesn’t get taken away at check in most times!
  • Flask or Crotch Whiskey – I usually get creative when it comes to smuggling in a bit of booze. Whether it’s putting a bit of vodka in a Listerine bottle or a bit of whiskey in my pants I’ll usually find a way. (Sorry if this is too inappropriate!)
  • Bandanas, props, and headpieces- I always bring a bandana because most of the festivals I go to are dusty and it’s so nice to have it to cover up my face so I don’t have to breathe it in. The props and headpieces always help with photo ops and are an easy way to spice up any outfit!

How do you bring your stuff to festivals?

I always pack my stuff in my larger backpack and put packing cubes inside of it to keep organized. Then I’ll bring a smaller leather backpack to bring around with me at the actual festival so I don’t have to worry about carrying a purse or something.

How do you protect your stuff against the elements?

My key packing item for protecting myself against the weather is bringing a jacket. Many of the festivals I’ve been to are scorching hot during the day so people don’t bring jackets and then it cools down so much during the night that everyone is freezing. So, I’ve learned to always bring a jacket or flannel that I shove in my festival backpack and have when the sun goes down and most people are super jealous because I’m warm! 🙂


Danielle Sudderth


  • 30+ festivals
  • Favorite festival: Impossible to answer…

What top 3 things do you always bring to festivals besides the common stuff everybody bring?

  • Earplugs – they’re vital to hearing health (depending on how close you like to get to stages) but also necessary when trying to get some quality sleep with rambunctious neighbors. I’m a light sleeper but I NEED lots of sleep. If I didn’t have earplugs at every camping fest, I’ve been to, I don’t think I would have made it to day 3. If you forget these, the first aid tents or even security/production staff, always have extras 😉
  • Cough drops – even if you don’t have a cold or allergies, your throat goes through a lot in 3.5 days at a fest. After losing my voice at a few festivals, I learned that the combination of talking/yelling over the music + lots of smoke (whether you smoke or not, it’s inescapable) + dust from thousands of people walking around in dirt is enough to wreak havoc on your insides. Cough drops are like gold on day 3! Take a full bag in and you’ll probably hand them all out to whispering friends.
  • Extra TP – this is an absolute MUST! Port-a-potties always run out of toilet paper. It’s another inevitable fact of festivals. So, I always bring those little kleenex personal pouches that you can slip into your pocked/fanny pack/backpack, when you go into the actual venue from camping! But I also always have a couple of extra full rolls of toilet paper back at camp for those mornings…

How do you bring your stuff to festivals?

I use a combination of bags and coolers. I have a few bags in my closet that are pretty much always ready to go with camping things (mallet, extra stakes, bug spray, toilet paper rolls, earplugs, etc). I use a duffle bag to pack all of my clothes. I always bring a couple options for my at-the-show-bag; a fanny pack for when I don’t want to carry too much, a Camelbak for when I need to bring my own water, and a back pack for when I need to bring extra supplies or even stuff a hammock in there to chill inside the venue.

How do you protect your stuff against the elements?

Zipbags are pretty essential for keeping things safe from water. I put my phone in one, if it’s raining but I need to take my phone into the venue (otherwise, I would suggest just leaving it in the car). I always tell people to put their rain flaps on their tents, when setting up at first! Even if it doesn’t look like rain all weekend, it could happen – but also, when the sun goes down, the dew can accumulate and leave your tent full of moist objects (it’s super gross to sleep on a damp air mattress).

Keeping as little out in the common area as possible, is the best way to ward off thiefs. Lock as much in your car as possible, when leaving to go into the venue or at night. It also can depend on where you’re camping. If you’re spot is super close to the entrance (which may seem great, at first) will mean more people will walk through your camp and have the potential to grab something on their way. I’ve had an entire cooler get taken once, at Bonnaroo, while we were camped crazy close.

Also, it’s important to be aware what you have out – food can get spoiled easily if you leave it in the wrong place. Organization is key!


Inma Gregorio


  • 50+ festivals
  • Favorite festival: Paredes de Coura, Portugal

What top 3 things do you always bring to festivals besides the common stuff everybody bring?

Our sweet festival bed consisting of:

  • An awesomely thin foam mattress we rescued a few years back from a campsite after its owners had left it behind. After thoroughly washing it, it became a basic and we take it always with us.
  • Linen. Yes, we are this picky!
  • A big pillow.

Combined with silicone earplugs and enough water to survive a few hours in the tent before going back to the festival grounds, they are VITAL to getting some sleep.

How do you bring your stuff to festivals?

We usually attend festivals within a 6-8h driving distance tops from our base in Galicia. This means we can cover all the Portuguese ones and most of the Spanish festivals too. These two Southern European countries have some of the best festivals in the world, so FOMO is out of the question.

That said, once we park our car – usually far from the festival camping grounds – we grab all our stuff and walk the rest. On top of our aforementioned bed, rolled as a carpet, we bring a few backpacks with our camera gear, clothes we’ll use and other unavoidable things.

Finally, we use supermarket bags for the drinks and some snacks. We’re too lazy to cook there and there’s usually a great offer of food trucks and local restaurants where to eat.

How do you protect your stuff against the elements?

When we leave the tent, we make sure to do not leave valuables behind. Our cameras and photography equipment come with us at all times, even if we leave our festival home to take a shower. They are heavy and all but the idea of losing them is unbearable.

As for the weather, we are used to living in this region of the world so we basically dress as we do normally. Layers, always a raincoat in the backpack just in case and, if there’re pools, rivers or lakes nearby; swimsuits and sunglasses! What else?



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