The Ultimate Guide to Festival Camping

Camping at music festivals above all, can go from being a beautiful experience to an absolute nightmare when not properly prepared. Don't feel hopeless, because I know how stressful and overwhelming planning and camping can be, I'll never forget the first festival I camped at, i was so unprepared, I spent more time at my campground then the festival, which is why i created the Ultimate Guide to Festival Camping! It details most common camping questions and gives some useful tips! Whether you're a first-time festival goer or a long time veteran, this guide will change the way you look at camping forever

What Kind of Ticket Should I Get?

Before buying your camping ticket, there’s a lot of variables you have to keep in mind. Some festivals require you to purchase a separate ticket for camping, while others camping is included. Also account for how you’ll be getting to the festival, will you be driving or flying? Always check the different types of camping tickets to make sure it tailors to your needs! The festival knows and accommodates all kinds of campers, some festivals even offer group camping! 

Now you’re probably thinking, what kind of ticket should i get? There are usually a few different forms of camping of tickets being sold, including some useful add-ons. Not all festivals offer Add-Ons, but with a little research through the festivals website will give you an idea of what the festival offers! There are 2 main types of tickets: General Admission & VIP. 

  • A General Admission (GA) Camping Ticket is the most common wristband that usually includes a camping spot for 2-4 people, as well as parking in your camp. You’ll have access to the normal showers (be mindful that everyone in GA uses them), and an area with food trucks and vendors!
  • A VIP Camping Ticket is a more exclusive wristband that offers everything a GA does, plus more! Your campgrounds are closer to the festival and you have access to better showers & It May be less crowded in camp. But these tickets may cost a little more than a normal GA Camping ticket!

What are these ‘Add-Ons’ you speak of? Some festivals sell EXTRA amenities like,

  • Careless Camping
  • Ideal  Location Camping Spots
  • Early-Access Camping, where you can go in the night before the festival starts and get set up! (I’ve done this before and I really recommend it!) 
  • Air Conditioned Tents 
  • Shaded Camping Spots
  • Effortless Camping (Where they set up your stuff for you!)

These do come with a price tag, but to the right person, it will enhance your festival camping experience! 

Plannin’ & Packin’

This is my favorite part, getting a plan together & packing! One thing to always check the festivals website for any information and prohibited items. You don’t want to get stuck in security on accident! My first festival I brought a mirror (for pictures, duh) & they threw it away! I was so upset and I knew it could’ve all been avoided if I had read the website! Below is a list I made to make sure nothing is left behind, (note the *** means it’s not necessary but useful!)

Camping Supplies

  • Tent & ***Extra Stakes- size depending on how many people are staying in your tent and how much room you want & always being along extra stakes in case you accident bend one beyond repair! 
  • ***Tarp – I always bring a tarp for underneath the tent & if my tent doesn’t have one, then one for over my tent! 
  • ***Rubber hammer or mallet – for staking down your tent and canopy!
  • Air mattress + pump, Sleeping bag, or a hand-inflated sleeping pad!
  • Pillows & Blankets 
  • ***Canopy – Shade over your campsite!
  • ***Tapestries, Flags, or Totems – I use tapestries and tie them around the open sides of my canopy to mark my campsite and make it shadier!
  • ***Chairs
  • ***Fold out table
  • ***Plug in Car converter (so you can charge your phone, recharge batteries, plug in lights etc) 
  • ***Speaker (extra batteries and aux cord)
  • Lights, flashlights, or christmas lights – i love decorating my campsite with pretty lights to give it just the right vibes.
  • Insect Repellant or Citronella candles
  • Jumper Cables – a dead car is a sad car 🙁

Food & Cooking Supplies

  • *** Camping stove & extra gas canisters – useful but not needed!
  • *** Pots, pans, utensils, plates, cups, napkins, & soap – If you want less waste at the campgrounds, definitely trade up the plastic!
  • Trash bags
  • *** Condiments (ketchup, mustard, mayo, butter, oil etc.)
  • Jugs of Water to fill up throughout the weekend for the campsite – they will always have water refill stations sprawled across the campgrounds!
  • Cooler
  • Ice!!!!! – They do sell Ice in the festival, but it’s a little more expensive than ice at a gas station! Try stacking up on ice before getting in the festival.

With bringing food, i suggest bringing things that will not need to be refrigerated for a long period of time! Without my grill, I usually bring some cereal and breakfast bars, light granola and some snacks, along with some BOMB peanut butter and jellies!

Personal Belongings & Toiletries

  • Face wipes, baby wipes, toilet paper
  • Shampoo, conditioner, body wash, lotion, sunscreen 
  • Towels & shower shoes
  • Toothpaste/toothbrush & mouthwash
  • Gum 
  • ***Razors (Check the festival’s website cause some do not allow razors) 
  • Hairbrush, hair ties, bobby pins, headbands 
  • ***First Aid Kit and Any medications you are taking

Some Useful Tips

  • Get to the campgrounds early! The line in definitely backs up and you’ll spend anywhere to 5-10 minutes having your car searched by security! 
  • Make sure you have a full-tank of gas! Turning your car on waste gas & you don’t want to be stuck at your campsite after the show!
  • Lock up your expensive belongings, we don’t want to believe it, but there some bad people are out there who want what they don’t have, so make sure you don’t fall victim!
  • Take cash out before you get to the festival! You never know when the credit card machines will go down! 

Hopefully I’ve answered any questions you have and you’re feeling prepared to take on camping at your next festival! Thank You & If I missed anything or you have some tips, comment them below!

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