Festivals – especially bigger ones like EDC (Electric Daisy Carnival) and Electric Forest, can have very long hours. You want to make sure you’ll have everything you need before heading in – to keep you healthy & happy all rave long!
In the past years I’ve usually taken one of our bestselling hologram backpacks with me. It’s roomy, but small enough that you don’t mind carrying it all day. And in super amazing hologram colours – it will match any outfit! In recent years though my neck and shoulders have gotten worse, so I’ve taken to using a fanny pack & renting a locker. (The phone charging alone is worth the rental!) I’ll keep my essentials in my fanny pack, and leave the stuff in the locker that I might only need once or twice during the day.
Below, I’ll let you know what I’ve found to be most helpful to keep on me during the day & why. It won’t include your essentials like your wallet or phone – I mean that’s a given, does anyone ever travel without them now?! They are in no particular order, as I usually have them all with me. Any favourite products I’ve mentioned are NOT sponsored – they are genuinely items I use, love and would recommend.♥
- Extra phone charging pack – If you LOVE taking photos at events like I do, this is a great thing to have! Amazon has a ton, and some hold multiple full phone charges in them. When I went to Dreams in 2019 our locker was equipped with a phone charger – but not all fests will have them. Think ahead! Nobody wants to be stranded at 2am with a dead phone and no way to get your Uber.
- Chapstick – Honestly this is a must for me festival or not. I probably have about twenty-four chapsticks at any given time, yet seem to only ever be able to find two... Lips have delicate skin, and get dry very fast when you are in the sun or dehydrated. Try to find one with an SPF to protect your lips from getting burnt as well! My personal favourite is Carmex Classic Medicated with SPF 15.
- Refillable water bottle – Most festivals will let you bring in empty water bottles for refilling! Another must to save on those sometimes-pricey water bottles. While my at-home favourite water bottle are the stainless steel ones by Swell – I do find it heavy to cart around all day, and honestly don’t want to lose it. I usually take whatever lightweight “promo” water bottle I have lying around. (You know the ones companies will give out free with their name on it?) And this way, if I happen to forget it or misplace it it’s not a huge deal.
- Sunscreen – As someone who is pretty pasty, I once brought 3 – THREE – SPF 60 sunscreen with me on a week long Dominican trip. It’s pretty key for me. At a festival, I find I’m not sitting down a lot and my torso & legs usually don’t need it. But I always put it on once before leaving the hotel, and I like to keep a small facial one with me to reapply as needed. I recently came across an AMAZING brand: Honua Hawaiian Skin Care – MALU SPF 30. I got it in my CAUSEBOX in the Spring, and fell in love with it over the summer! IT’s palm-free, cruelty free, Vegan & reef safe! What more could you want? As someone with sensitive skin, it also didn’t make me break out which is a huge sunscreen win for me.
- Travel deodorant – it’s hot, you’re dancing, you’re walking 50,000 steps in a day - so there’s a good chance you might sweat. I like having one of the teeny travel size deodorants in case mine starts to wear off. In a pinch, it can also be used as an anti chaffing stick!
- Hair ties – I almost always wear my hair down to a fest, and 2 hours in I almost always wish I put it up. Grad a pack at Dollarama to chuck in there. There will be a few for you, and maybe a few for a new friend who might need one!
- Hand Sanitizer - This is a whole different thing post-Covid-19. I did usually bring to festivals before covid though! It’s great for when you have to use port-a-potties, and will probably be a requirement in a post covid festival world! Funny story: Went to Dreams Music Fest in Toronto, ON in 2019. Go through security, she empties my bag. I had one of the little Bath & Body Works travel sized sanitizers with me (These are perfect size wise.) – I believe the flavour was “Cocoa Puff.” Security opens it. Smells it. Yells at me: “OMG, THIS SMELLS LIKE ALCOHOL.” I politely say: “Yes ma’am, hand sanitizer IS made from alcohol.” I get kicked out and told I’m not allowed to try & come in to the festival for at least an hour, and if I do, my wristband will be cut off. The wristband, that I got from the media tent – at the festival I was working at. HOKAY then. End of story. Maybe keep the little plastic packaging on yours just in case.
- Kleenex – Why are all my stories about Dreams Music Fest? Dreams had got really big in 2014/2015 and one of these years there was ZERO – literally ZERO toilet paper left by like halfway. A teeny travel pack of Kleenex will do you in an emergency sitch, if you happen to have already sat down before realizing it was empty.
- Extra Kandi – depending on the festival, I may bring a lot of kandi! If I find it to be too much for my wrists & arms, them I will keep all the extras in my backpack & just “refill” my arm as the day or night goes on!
- Leggings or Tights – While I haven’t done a Vegas desert festival yet – like EDC or Burning Man – our Canadian fests can sometimes get chilly at night. I love having a small pair of leggings with me I can throw on if needed. We’ve had our fair share of rainy & chilly festivals here, and that extra layer helps a lot! They’re useful even at club night where you may be waiting in line for an hour in the middle of winter – Strip ‘em off when you get in and chuck ‘em in a coat sleeve with coat check!
- Snacks – NEED I SAY MORE?! It really depends on the specific festival you go to though, on whether or not they allow snacks. If they do allow it I find some protein bars or granola bars are great for sustenance when you might not feel like a whole food truck meal. Fruit rolls up are fun pre-packaged snack too! Chips may be a little bulky – but anything with a little bit of salt is great too, when you are losing electrolytes with sweat!
- Bonus: My light up wings! – A personal fav, but not a must. If my outfit happens to match my wings, I’ll usually bring them! You’d be surprised how small they can fold up, and honestly they are just so fun to use. Maybe you have poi, or a whip – throw it in your backpack too!
Have I missed anything? What are your festival must have in your fanny or back pack? Let us know in the comments so we can check it out!