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7 essential tips for your first festival


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With festival season rolling around, music lovers and eccentric fashionistas will be making their way to festivals across the country. Whether you are a professional festival goer or it’s your first time wallowing around in the madness of mud and music, every festival throws in a new learning curve. Here are my top tips to festivaling flawlessly.

 Image credit: Veld Music Festival on Flickr

1. Be weather smart

Although you may not want to ruin your lairy festival attire, it’s important that you protect yourself from the UV rays. Therefore, pack sun cream, hats and sunglasses. Meanwhile, don’t forget an extra layer of clothing for when it gets cold at night, definitely bring your wellies to trudge through the mud, and don’t forget a rain mac for when the rain showers come… because they will!

2. Stay hydrated

If you’re drinking alcohol and temperatures are high, you're at greater risk of dehydration. Most festivals now have free water refill stations dotted across the arena, so try squeezing a bottle of water in between every other can of Dark Fruits Cider.

3. Party safe 

Always use the buddy system whilst at a festival, especially if you're drinking. Stick together, look out for one another and pick a meeting spot close to your camping spot in case someone gets lost. 

Meanwhile, don’t share your drinks or accept drinks from strangers, even those camping around you. Buy and pour your drinks yourself and never leave your drink unattended to reduce the risk of your drink getting spiked. Additionally, you will put yourself at serious risk if you mix substances, including alcohol. Know the signs of an overdose. Seek first aid from the medical tents located through the festival or call 999 if you need help.

Consider carrying a personal safety alarm with you. This will help prevent dangerous situations, such as sexual assault, theft etc.

4. Keep your food safe to eat

If you're attending a weekend long event, you may be bringing your own food. Avoid perishable foods and pack only foods that can be stored at room temperature. Use disposable wipes or hand sanitiser before preparing and eating food.

5. Clean up after yourself

Get to know where the garbage and recycling bins are to keep the event litter-free and clean for everyone. Also, if the event is in a rural area, properly disposing of your waste will reduce the risk of attracting vermin. 

6. Keep your phone charged

Don’t forget to keep your phone charged so that you can communicate at all times. Normally there are onsite recharging facilities when you arrive at the festival, or purchase a portable charger large enough to cover your phone battery for the entire weekend.

7. Watch your valuables

Keep your valuables with you at all times, including your phone, money, credit cards, keys and ID. Do not padlock your tent as if there are any criminals around, they’re likely to assume you have valuables inside.

Finally, never assume it won’t happen to you. Although coming to harm is unlikely, it can happen, so don’t take any unnecessary chances with your safety.

Head to the FCO site for more information on how to prepare for a festival (especially one abroad), how to stay safe at the festival, and what to do in an emergency. 

Lead image credit: Veld Music Festival on Flickr

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