As summer begins, so do festivals all over the world. I’m not usually a fan of B.I.G Festivals as I can get quite claustrophobic sometimes. However, this year I decided to face my fears and went to both Coachella (Palm Springs) and The Governors Ball (New York). One of the main things I’ve noticed is: You can’t have fun unless you’re prepared. So, here are a few pointers:
Read the emails send by the organisers – There is always something to new learn! Make sure you print your tickets, fill out all the formalities and register your wristband in order to avoid standing outside the line like a lemon while your friends head inside.
BFF it – Concerts are made to share memories with your loved ones. I feel much more comfortable to let go and have fun with my own friends than with people I’m not really close to – Outsider much? Avoid the downer. This also means, you can’t go alone. Perhaps you’ll make 15 minutes of solid friendship but that’s as far as it goes. Should you need any help whatsoever, don’t count on strangers to be there. After all, they too are there to enjoy themselves.
Weather Forecast It. More than half the people who attended govballnyc ended up cursing the day they were born when they saw just how much mud there was. Although, I came prepared for the Mudball, I forgot to take a hat for Coachella – I ended up frying under the sun for three days. On the bright side – At least I got a tan. (One that peeled off the moment I left Palm Springs back to cold NYC)
Meeting Points. When you’re part of a big group, It’s normal that you can’t all agree on the bands you’d like to see. Make sure you select a meeting point for each stage that way, if you get lost, there’s always a place for you to regroup. We always met in front of the light and sound booth (see picture) directly facing the stage. Also, make sure you mention the time you sent your message in order to avoid any communication issues.
Or… you can create your own sign language. I met some Canadians who walked around with their hand up in the air mimicking the Canadian Goose. Others were walking around wearing bright flashy colours so that they can find each others more easily; while some were holding on to big inflatable dolls. No judgement buddy, pick whatever works for you…
Download Apps and Have a Map. It’s so much easier to download the apps (before you get there) which gives you all the info you need to know. Also, there’s no point knowing what time your band is playing if you don’t know where that stage is. Ie. carry a map.
Pack a Bathroom kit. Bathrooms can get messy and dirty. Make sure you pack some tissue and a hand sanitizer. Lord knows, you’ll need ’em.
Eat before you go. Unless you’re a fan of eating junk food, make sure you eat something before going to the concert. It’s always impossible for me to find something I actually like. As a result, I load up on energy bars and have a little feast when I return from the concert.
Sort your transportation. Every night at Coachella, it would take us at least two hours to leave the premises. First night, we hitchhiked to our friends villa only to find out that our car was about to get towed. Second night, we went by cab and had to walk for hours in order to join him in the middle of bumblefuck as the authorities had closed the roads. And the last night, I took my car and forgot where I had parked it. Smart. Bottom line, make sure you think all your options through.
Take your sunglasses, put your sunscreen on, make sure your phone has battery and HAVE FUN Y’ALL!