Well, I attended my first weekend-long music festival this month.
Even though I had a great time camping and hanging out with friends and listening to a constant stream of live music, there were definitely a number of things I wish someone had advised me to bring to make my festival experience that much more enjoyable and comfortable.
To spread the love (and the advice!) I’ve put together my Top 10 “Should’ve Brought” items that I’ll definitely be sure to throw into my suitcase next time.
Are YOU heading to a music festival soon, too? Make sure these things are on your future packing list – you’ll thank me later, I swear!
1. A refrigerator
A lot of the perishable food I brought with me to the festival – eggs, milk, ice cream, raw steaks – went bad over the weekend because they had no protection from the hot sun. It was such a waste of money, plus I got super sick from eating it! Next time I’m definitely going to pack my refrigerator in order to keep all of my food cold. Bonus! If you get too hot at any point, you can open the door and stand in front of it for a little while to cool off.
2. Blackout curtains
A tent is so pleasant to fall asleep in. You’re surrounded by that fresh, natural air and get to drift to sleep to the sounds of the wild while still enjoying a layer of protection and privacy. But in the morning, the novelty quickly wears off when that sun is taking over your entire tent and wakes you up at the crack of dawn! Next time I’ll plan on bringing my blackout curtains to ensure many more hours of shut eye.
Y’all, I don’t just mean a can of OFF. That might be helpful for protecting your skin, but – if you’re like me and you can’t stand even the sight of bugs – you need something with a little more potency. I’d recommend packing some pesticide spray (like the kind they use at popular exterminator companies like Orkin or PestMasters) to really make sure your space is insect-free.
4. Your doctor
A lot of ailments can spring up during a music festival, including but not limited to cuts, bruises, sweating, headaches, dehydration, and food poisoning from consuming eggs, milk, ice cream, and raw steaks left out in the sun. Your doctor will have a solution to all of these illnesses, and the quicker you can get back to wellness, the more fun you’ll have at your music festival!
To spy on your tent neighbors to see what they’re doing when they think no one is watching. It might be the most entertaining thing you see all weekend!
6. Your TV set
Look, I like live music as much as the next guy. But I definitely could have used a Stranger Things break at some point during the weekend – which is why, next year, my TV will be at the top of my packing list.
7. A sound machine
Alright, I know I said earlier that it’s nice to fall asleep to the sounds of nature, but after awhile those cicadas can get a little monotonous – and a little too loud, if I’m being honest. I would recommend packing a sound machine to help drown out the noises of the summertime woods with the mechanical hum of ocean waves.
Nothing will intimidate fellow festival-goers more than by showing them how much money you have.
9. A microwave
Now don’t get me wrong, there were food trucks galore at my music festival. They all opened early and served food all day long, and most of it was quite tasty. But in my experience, some of the food was served just a tad too lukewarm for my taste. I understand that they’re working with limited resources, but there were many times I wished I had brought my microwave to give these dishes just a little temp boost.
10. The internet
You guys, I lost cell service the second I set foot onto the festival grounds. Did I think about leaving right then and there? You bet. But I stuck through it, remembering that my ancestors also sometimes went an entire weekend without the internet and they still managed to get through it. It wasn’t easy, though, and next time, I’m definitely coming better prepared by packing the internet.