As seasoned festival goers & festival staff we here at Bite thought we’d take the time to impart our wisdom to you lot. Which you will probably ignore!
1.Bring your own toilet paper, yes they usually provide some in the dreaded portaloo but it usually runs out by 10am. Make sure you have enough, you never know, you may get festival belly or drop it down the longdrop!
2.Camping essentials: Tent, a waterproof one, trust me the bargain tent you picked up at the supermarket may have been cheap…but it likely won’t keep you dry. One very damp and miserable Glastonbury taught me that! A sleeping bag; A roll mat helps keep you warm and those in search of comfort may want to bring inflatable beds and a pillow. Just don’t forget you have to lug all this across miles of field!
3.Money for food and drink, especially coffee and energy drinks!! But if you are feeling poor own brand versions of pot noodles, cola, energy drinks, rice etc work just as well and can be made with little effort on a camping stove.
4.Bin Bags, respect the land you are on and bag up your rubbish. But also they can be used as impromptu tent repair or wet weather gear…at a push.
5.On a related note: gaffa tape; for fixing shoes, tents, holes in bags & clothes, festival bondage sessions (who are we to judge).
6.Hand Sanitizer – you can be as skanky as you like at a festival, days without washing, you’re allowed…go for it. But after a trip to those epic toilets a squirt of hand sanitizer probably isn’t a bad idea!
7.Condoms, remember they protect you from nasty diseases as well as unplanned parenting!
8.Matches /lighter – even if you don’t smoke at least you can offer a light to the sexy punk who’s lost theirs? Also useful for lighting stoves, BBQ etc. Just remember fire and plastic tents don’t mix so well, be safe!
9.Sun screen and a hat, even if the forecast is overcast, you’ll be sorry if the weather changes and you miss half the festival by being in the medical tent with sunburn/heatstroke.
10.Water/soft drinks…STAY HYDRATED. And no, a warm can of beer in the morning does not count (it does: Frank)
11.Sunglasses, mine have a palm tree and a plastic flamingo attached but hey, maybe Raybans are more your style!
12.Girly essentials (metrosexuals may also appreciate) Small tub of facial moisturiser with an added sunscreen, lipsalve, battery/gas powered straighteners for the more fashion conscious, dry shampoo (seriously, don’t knock it till you tried it) mini hair brush with mirror attached (if you are sadistic enough to look in the mirror) and emergency tampons…just incase!
13.A sharpie, get your fav bands autograph, write your number on someone’s arm, mark your stuff so it doesn’t get lost/stolen.
14.Wet wipes- the traditional festival bath!
15.Deodorant/bodyspray, you can at least try and limit the smell!
16.Clothing essentials- 2x pairs of trousers at least, if one gets soaked one day one you won’t wanna spend the whole weekend in them. The same goes for socks. Top tip, denim takes ages to dry so consider different fabrics. For girls I advise skirts/dresses with tights, they dry easily and are adaptable for hot/cold/wet weather. Some kind or coat/waterproof incase of monsoon weather. A jumper/cardi/hoody for the cold evenings.
17.Pain killers & Imodium, both things that could prove lifesavers!
18.A torch, invaluable for finding your way to your tent through a maze of guy ropes.
19.Your mobile phone, in this day and age festivals offer charging tents, free wifi and phone apps. Also remember what it used to be like when you lost someone? A few hours wasted at the meeting point hoping they’d show up, now you can just text them! But make sure your phone’s insured if its an expensive one.
20.A watermelon …yes its random but it’s a talking point! If you can carry it you get to make endless dirty dancing jokes. Also they are great in the morning with a hangover, or at night infused with vodka.
So that’s our packing list. Here’s our advice on what NOT to take…
1.BBQ’s – these days a lot of festivals ban BBQ’s, even disposable ones, check the web site before you go. If you do take one please don’t leave it in your tent overnight, they give off harmful chemicals long after they go out and can even kill you.
2.Alcohol- some sites allow it into the arenas, most don’t. And all have limits on how much each person can bring. Check this out before you go. And some don’t allow glass on site so you may need to decant the JD in plastic bottles before you go!
3.A suitcase with wheels, quite apart from the fact people will laugh at you, all sites contain mud. Mud + wheels = never a good idea.
4.Something you aren’t prepared to loose/break/have stolen. No matter how careful you are things happen. Don’t be naïve.
5.Wellington boots with high heels (what is up with that?) they may look cute but chances are you’ll break your neck and/or be mocked by me!
6.Your makeup, you will stink anyway so is there any point in making your eyes standout? And it will end up down your face most likely! (NB I always take mine anyways!!)
7.Your most annoying friend, 4 days without sleeping, washing or eating properly are unlikely to improve your tolerance for them. There could be blood.
By Becky Beynon-Lewis