7 Tips to Survive this Summer’s Festivals Without Being a Total Wimp

This article was written by Vicky Anscombe in collaboration with Columbus Direct.

Festival season is almost here, and this year’s line-ups are looking strong (with the exception of Kanye at Glastonbury). The Libertines at Leeds and Reading, Darwin Deez at The Secret Garden Party and Marilyn Manson at Download? You’re spoiled for choice this year, you really are. You want to get out there and party, hard. But also, secretly, you love your bed and you can’t hold your booze. Here’s how to style it out and hide your weaknesses during the weekend of debauchery.

1. Don’t start drinking too early

If, like me, you can’t walk straight after a few cans of cider, 11am is not an appropriate time to start drinking, so don’t be tempted. Stick to water and soft drinks until the sun goes down. If your friends (or, heaven forbid, family) are badgering you to drink, just say that you’re too hungover from the night before or say you will ‘in a bit’. You’ll be amazed how much you can get away with by cracking ‘in a bit’ out.

2. Wear sunscreen and cover up

What’s worse than waking up hungover in a tent? Why, waking up hungover in a tent with your skin radiating enough heat to fry an egg. If it’s sunny, wear sunscreen, cover up, and stick to the shade where possible. Sunstroke is a nasty business, especially when you don’t have a bedroom to slink off to and sleep in.

3. Steer clear of drugs

It may look (and feel) pretty awesome to get on it, but the next day your sub-par serotonin levels will ensure that you can’t enjoy anything and you’ll struggle to leave your tent. Just say no. You’ll thank me in the morning.

4. Sleep as and when you can

If you know you’re bad on two hours of sleep, find a window during the day when there are no bands you want to see, and carve out some time for a nap. The campsite will be quieter, so you may actually be able to drop off, and even though you’ll be missing out on some daytime fun, you’ll be raring to go in the evening.

Check out Vicky’s guide for sleeping at festivals.

5. Bring some healthy food

Guess what will happen if you live off undercooked burgers for three days? Your digestive system will suffer, big time, and also, they’re mega-expensive. Bring along some healthy snacks from home which you can eat; pitta breads, nuts, soups, canned fruits and noodles are all fine, and won’t go off in the heat. Cheese and hummus will last for one day only; you have been warned.

Check out Vicky’s guide for food to take to festivals

6. Don’t mosh if you can’t mosh

Guess what happens to people in mosh pits who really don’t want to be there? They get crushed. And don’t get me started on circle pits; if you’re not well-built or you have a nervous disposition, this will not end well.

7. Stay hydrated

You may not be able to bring open bottles into the main arena, so bring a multipack with you and use one a day. Most festival sites have water stations dotted around, so you can refill easily and for free. Remember to drink more when the sun’s out, even if you don’t feel like you’re cooking. You probably are.

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6 Comments

  1. by Kristin on April 27, 2015  5:58 am Reply

    Amen to the healthy food bit! I've only been to a few festivals, but a day off my regular diet and my stomach is absolutely hating me. It doesn't help that I don't do well with really starchy foods and that seems to be the primary offering. I wish, wish, wish I could figure out how to get myself to BottleRock in Napa this summer - along with having an absolutely killer list of bands, they're at least guaranteed to have good food and beverages!

    • by Vicky on May 4, 2015  10:43 am Reply

      Ooo I hadn't heard of that one – looks great. I always feel so gross after festivals, like I can barely move. They're so exhausting and you're so vicious to your body with all the food and wine during it no wonder you start to feel bad! I'm definitely going to make the effort to be healthy for festivals this year!

  2. by Agostina on April 27, 2015  12:55 pm Reply

    This year is my first time going to Glastonbury (I'm from Argentina). Thanks for the great advice :)

    • by Vicky on April 29, 2015  9:03 am Reply

      Ah hope you enjoy it! Glastonbury is awesome. There's loads more Glasto advice on my blog too – have a look around :).

  3. by pragati on April 27, 2015  1:03 pm Reply

    No idea what a mosh is, but crowds are not my thing for sure! :)

    • by Vicky on April 29, 2015  9:02 am Reply

      Ha, I can guarantee that if you don't like crowds you won't like a mosh! It's basically a group of people all jumping up and down together but violently and usually ends up with everyone pushing each other, but in a jovial way. Now that I try to explain it I realise how weird it sounds. They were very entertaining when I was 18ish – wouldn't go near one now!

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