What You NEED To Know About: Festivals

As it's now June and we're safely in the summer season, I figured I'd share some of my top tips for the upcoming festivals! A while ago myself and my best friend Carrie attended both V and Leeds festival, and let me tell you I wish there was someone around to give me their top tips.
Naively, we headed to both of the festivals pretty unprepared, and had an interesting few nights there! Strangely, we booked on both festivals within the same week. Believe me when I tell you it was a nightmare by the end of that week. I actually shudder just thinking about it. 

Anyway, here are some of my top tips for the festival season:

1. Dry shampoo will be your best friend. Does this one even need explaining? Festivals can be a hot, sweaty mess, and when you wake up in an oven like tent, dry shampoo can be a quick fix for the day ahead.

2. Do not take your full purse. Festivals are rife for pickpocketing, or dropping stuff everywhere when you're jumping all around. Personally I only take my ID (they will ID you for alcohol so make sure you don't forget this!), cash and my debit card for any emergencies, just incase!

3. Sleep with your valuables. Sounds quite dodgy I know, but you wouldn't believe how many things go missing from peoples tents. At V festival we were actually woken up one night by a strange guy walking in our tent, and we were petrified. If we hadn't of woke up I dread to think what he could have stole while we were sleeping. Therefore, sleep with your money, phone, camera etc in the bottom of your sleeping bag. You'll thank me for it!

4. NEVER camp at the bottom of a hill. If it happens to rain whilst you're at the festival (and lets be honest, British weather isn't exactly the best), your tent will be flooded and everything ruined. We actually saw this happen at Leeds, and I've never felt so sorry for someone in my entire life. Where would you sleep afterwards?!

5. Layer up at night. Either this, or wear something warm. I can't begin to tell you how chilly it is, and waking up at 4am with your teeth chattering is an experience you don't want.

6. Take toilet roll with you. You'll thank me for this one. Yes there will be some in the portaloos to start off with, but you won't believe how quickly it runs out. We made the mistake of not doing this for V festival, and had to resort to taking a roll out of the portaloos when we were lucky enough to find some. Needless to say, we were better prepared for Leeds.

7. On a similar note, always carry said toilet roll in your bag. You never know when you'll need the loo, and believe me when I tell you you'll be thankful for that little pocket full of tissue.

8. Do NOT camp right near the portaloos. It may sound practical at the time, but after a few hours you'll realise your mistake. They're not the nicest smelling places, especially Leeds where it is pretty much just a wooden box over a trench. Yuck.

9. Wellies will save your life. My friend Carrie mocked me for taking wellies with me, an idiot move on her part. As soon as it started pouring it down, she cursed her trainers to high heavens after getting stuck in deep mud, and had to pay the inflated price for a pair on site. Needless to say, she regretted that one.

10. Take a cheap phone. As I mentioned before, festivals are a thief's dream. I personally chose not to take my iPhone, and brought a cheap handset for £10 from Tesco. That way, I could still send texts and make calls, but I wouldn't be too concerned if I lost it. Plus the battery life was amazing, and lasted all weekend without depleting at all. Also, Carrie took her iPhone and had to splurge on a portable charger on the first day. Great for capturing the special moments yes, but the battery is rubbish when you don't have a chance to charge it regularly. 

11. Take thick pyjamas, or a thick blanket. I seriously underestimated this one at V festival. The weather was absolutely gorgeous, and I even managed a slight tan and some sunburn from the weekend. At night however, it was absolutely freezing. I woke up a lot during the night with my teeth chattering, and it's not something I'd want to live through again. Warm PJs or a thick blanket are a good shout, either that or an extra thick sleeping bag. 

12. Stay hydrated. I know it sounds like a ridiculously obvious one, but staying hydrated is vital. The last thing anyone wants is to end up in first aid for dehydration. Take it from the girl who collapsed in the middle of a crowd at V - it is not fun.

13. Assign a meeting point. Festivals are a huge place, and it's easy to get separated from the people you're with. Make sure you all know where to meet up if you get separated - festivals often assign designated points around the camp for if this happens.

14. Be friendly with the people camping nearby. It always helps to talk to the people around you - be it for finding new friends, or for having people watch your back. Chances are you'll both be at your tents at different times, so it's handy to have someone to watch for any strange people that may be lurking by your tent when you're away.

15. Take minimal makeup. If you're like me and have to have a full face of makeup, I know this one may be a little far fetched. But there's nothing worse than makeup being left in a tent all day to go sweaty, and melt. Especially where lipsticks are concerned. 

16. Spares are a godsend. British weather is unpredictable as hell, and it's key that you take spare underwear. Trust me when I tell you that you don't want to be stuck in wet underwear for the rest of the day if the heavens decide to open up.

17. Take a packet of babywipes. If there's one thing to take from this post, it's the importance of babywipes. Believe me, you will be thankful for this! They are super handy if, for some reason, you can't make it to a shower. Instant freshen up!

18. Try not to camp near the main paths. They're usually noisy, and have flashlights waving everywhere at all times of the night as people try to find their way. It may be an ideal location to get to when you're headed back for the night, but it's a pain when you actually try to get some sleep and some idiot falls on your tent.

19. Take little snacks with you. Obviously not stuff like chocolate that will melt everywhere, but something more practical like biscuits etc. The prices on the camp for food are ridiculously high, so it helps to have stuff to snack on and stop you spending a ton. Keep them outside the main compartment of the tent too - the last thing you want is ants in your sleeping bag!

20. Avoid wearing a onesie at night. They're amazing at keeping you warm yes, but if you need the toilet in the middle of the night do you really want to be undoing it in the portaloo? Freezing cold, and with a risk of someone yanking the door open? I'd say not.

So there you have it - my top 20 tips for surviving a festival! I am by no means an expert - these are just some things I learnt from attending both V Festival and Leeds Festival within the same week. Looking back I can't believe we actually managed to survive!

Do you have any top tips for surviving a festival? Let me know in the comments below!

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