Effy Godwin
October 24, 2019
Reading time: 3.5 minutes

The busiest global festival season is well and truly underway, so I thought I’d share some quick and free festival hacks with you. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a festival virgin or veteran, it’s always good to share your tips for making life easier. These are all tried and tested hacks that will actually work. From getting too cold at night to losing your tent, we’ve got a selection of festival hacks to make your festival experience that bit easier.

Shivering in your Tent? - Layers

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You’re not stupid, obviously the more layers you’re wearing the warmer you’ll be, but I’m also talking about bedding. I know it’s nice to snuggle down with your sleeping bag and blankets on top of you, but you’re actually better putting the blankets underneath. Most of your heat will be sucked out by the cold ground, so you want to create as much distance and layers between you and it as possible. If you’ve got an air mattress you’re laughing, so feel free to burrito away, but if not, try and take a camping or yoga mat then layer yourself up princess and the pea style.

Looking for Love? - Dating Apps

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So if you’re looking for love, festivals are actually a great place to use dating apps. Think about it: there’s 1000s of single people and endless fun things to do for ‘dates’, plus you’re likely to have things in common given you’re both at the same event. I know its easy to get carried away in the heat of the moment, but festivals are pretty dirty so try and resist any extra-curricular activities (especially after the second day) until you meet up after the festival. If you are going to get down and dirty remember to stay safe, practice safe sex and safe sesh, so don’t drink too much and use protection! Plus you should always let your friends know where you’re going and who you’re with, if you don’t want to introduce them yet send them a selfie of you both and watch your drink just in case.

Where’s the Best Camping Spot? - Perfecting Tent Placement

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You’ve been queuing for hours, your bags are heavy and your feet are already beginning to hurt. I know it’s so tempting to just pitch your tent on the nearest available patch of grass but that’ll usually end in tears. Perfecting tent placement is an art, there’s loads of things to consider so we’ve made a quick list of rules to help you out:

  1. Don’t camp at the bottom of a hill.
  2. Do camp close enough to the toilets so you’ll make it in time, but far enough away to not be affected by the smell or if they flood!
  3. Think about whether you want to walk further now, or every day too and from the music (when you’re not carrying all those heavy bags).
  4. Don’t camp too close to the path, drunk people will trip over your tent and if the festival has metal walkways it’ll be noisy at night.
  5. The perimeter fence will turn into a toilet, so don’t camp too close to that either.
  6. If you’re with a group don’t camp in a circle and expect other people not to camp in the middle of it, space is extremely limited and it will be used.
  7. Equally, don’t rope off an area, everyone else will hate you and dismantle it at the nearest opportunity or a drunk person will trip and take down all your tents.

Getting Mixed Messages? - Timestamps on Texts

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Everyone should know signal, wifi and mobile data are notoriously bad at festivals. There’s so many people trying to get on the network and festivals are often in the middle of nowhere so it’s patchy at best. This means your messages won’t always go through at the right time and you might as well try sending your message via bottle in the ocean or messenger pigeon. By adding a physical timestamp into your text your friend can know whether you want to meet them in 15 minutes by the main stage or if you actually wanted to meet them 3 hours ago. Think “Where are you? It’s 11:52am x”.

Want to Make the Journey Home More Bearable? - Clean Socks

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Take it from me, there is nothing worse than having to travel home in wet or muddy socks. You’re already exhausted, your feet are sore, and you’re probably feeling a little cold from being knackered. Keeping one pair of clean dry socks for the end of the festival and your journey home will be such a comfort. Honestly, it’s such a simple thing but you wouldn’t believe the difference it can make. You can thank me later.

Fancy Yourself as a Groupie? - Tour Buses and Media Tents

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Now this one depends on the layout of your festival. Many festivals will have completely closed off backstage areas where all the celebs and band members hang out, so unless you manage to sneak your way in there, you’re stuffed. But wait, for the other festivals there’s hope. Influencers, bands, artists, and celebs will be doing a ton of press, so it’s worth stopping by any media, radio or TV tents or tour buses. Sometimes the tents will also be doing meet and greets, public Q&A’s or even just allow you to watch them interview the stars, plus they often have freebies and sometimes even merch up for grabs.

Get lost easily? - Map Pins 

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The two most important things you need to find are your tent and your car at the end of the festival. It’s so easy to lose where you’ve put either of them, especially when more and more people turn up so your landscape has seemingly completely changed. Go on your maps and drop a pin where you parked your car and where you pitched your tent. Yes, it’ll show up as in the middle of a field, but you’ll still be able to navigate your way closer to it. It might also be worth dropping one at your favourite food stand, stages or even the medical/info tent. Some of these festivals are massive so this can be a really useful way to find and reach your destination with minimal diversions. If you’re going to do this, remember to bring a portable charger as a pin on your maps is not help if your phones dead.