18 June 2019
It can be difficult knowing what to include when packing for a festival. Without the luxury of a hotel room with all of the essentials, or nearby shops, you need to make sure you take everything with you.
This is where a trusty festival checklist can come in handy. We’ve worked on one to cover all bases – whatever the weather, wherever the festival and whoever you’re going with, this list should cover it all.
- A tent: It’s worth spending a decent amount of money on a good tent that can withstand the variable conditions of a UK festival and that you can reuse again and again. Mountain Warehouse has a good range of tents at different prices.
- A camping mat: It’s important to have a mat under your sleeping bag, otherwise you’ll get cold during the night. Argos has a basic version and an inflatable one.
- A sleeping bag: Same goes for the sleeping bag as the tent – it’s worth spending money on a decent one that will keep you warm during the night. Argos has a good range at different prices – make sure you get one in time.
- A chair: Camping chairs are great to keep outside the tent and sit in first thing in the morning. Argos has one for £7.99 or, if you want something to rest on in the festival queue, you could get this Leisure Trolley, which works as a chair and a trolley all in one.
- A light or torch: Finding your things inside your tent at night is a nightmare without a light. This Light Wand has four incredibly bright LEDs, a one-touch power button and a magnet that allows it to stick to metallic surfaces.
- A mirror: Be the legend that brings a mirror for everyone to use. This one folds flat and has built in lights, too.
Do you need somewhere to store your festival camping gear during the winter? Access Self Storage can help. We have stores all over the UK, including Access Self Storage Bristol, Access Self Storage Battersea and Access Self Storage Fulham Broadway.
Festival food and drink
- Water bottle: Most festivals will have taps for you to refill water bottles. The Moon water bottle will keep your drink cold for up to 12 hours, so you won’t have to drink lukewarm water. And of course, it means less plastic.
- Non-alcoholic drinks: Something that’s often neglected on a festival checklist is a non-alcoholic drink which can really help in the mornings! Something high in Vitamin C with a nice flavour will make you feel better. Aloe Vera based drink Say Aloe comes in a variety of flavours including mango, strawberry, apple and berry so could be ideal as a morning refresher.
- Ginger tea: A good rainy-day hangover remedy might be ginger tea. The Gold Kiliginger tea sachets also include honey. They’ll certainly warm you up and give you a boost.
- Breakfast bars, sweets and crisps: Just make sure you have some snacks to keep you going in between meals.
- Toilet paper
- Anti-bacterial hand gel: Make sure you have a small antibacterial gel on you for toilet trips. The Aesop Resurrection Rinse-Free Hand Wash smells delicious and won’t dry out your hands.
- Sun block: Even if it’s forecast to be grey and rainy, you should take sun cream with you. This sun cream stick is ideal – it’s small and won’t leak in your bag.
- Toothbrush, toothpaste and mouthwash. Brushing your teeth is probably second best to having a shower – one of the most important things on this list!
- Microfibre cloth: Wipes are terrible for the environment as they never biodegrade, so invest in some microfibre cloths instead. Just add water to the cloth to wash your skin and even get makeup off. When you get home, throw them in the washing machine and they’re good as new to keep using.
- Body spray: If you want to smell good without taking perfume, a body spray is a good option.
- Moisturiser: The late nights, early mornings and festival diet can take its toll on your skin. You don’t need anything fancy or expensive: this fragrance-free moisturising lotion is only £1.50 and will do the job.
- Plasters: No one wants a blister to get in the way of having a good time, so make sure you have some Compeed style plasters on you.
- Multipurpose cream: A multipurpose treatment cream like Sudocrem is handy for festival-induced skin irritations like sunburn, blisters, cuts, spots, scrapes, insect bites and dry skin. It now comes in a in a dinky 22g pot, so it’s easy to travel with.
- Painkillers. Paracetamol & Ibuprofen, say no more.
- Towel: Even if you don’t have a shower, a towel is useful to take with you.
- Tampons and pads: Even if you’re not due on during the festival, it’s worth having some tampons and pads to hand. Alternatively, you might be interested in period-proof, sustainable underwear from Modibodi. They hold up to 2 tampons worth and can be worn all day which means fewer trips to (the dreaded) festival toilets.
Of course, those who are more fashionable might have extra items to add to this list, but the essentials include:
- Socks, socks and more socks: You really can’t have enough socks on you at a festival. Even if it’s hot during the day, you’ll want them for night time and inside the tent.
- Pyjamas: When packing for a festival, don’t forget to take nightwear too. You can thank us later.
- Bottoms: Remember, if you wear a jumpsuit, you’ll have to take it all off when you go to the loo. Instead, opt for trousers, shorts, leggings or skirts that are comfortable to wear all day through to night and will dry quickly if you get caught in the rain. If you want to wear leggings, you might be interested in the Empower range from Love Leggings. They’re made from quick-drying, sweat-wicking technology and have a controlling, supportive waistband for total coverage. They also have a hidden inside pocket to store small valuables.
- Tops: You want to be able to layer your clothes for the changing weather from day to night. When packing for a festival, include t-shirts or vests, cardigans or jumpers, and a hoodie for the evenings or bad weather.
- Raincoat or jacket: Whatever jacket you take, just try and make sure that it’s waterproof. Ideally, it should have a hood and pockets on the inside and outside.
- Shoes: Wellies, trainers and sandals should be enough. Wellies for rain, trainers for all weather and sandals for sunshine (or just to wear in and around your tent).
- Scarf and hat: Just in case it gets cold.
Other festival essentials
- Speakers: The JAM Audio - Hang Up (£24.99, available at Amazon, Argos and Currys) is waterproof, dirt-proof, can hang from your tent and has eight hours playtime between charges. The JAM Chill Out Portable Speaker (£19, available on ao.com) is also waterproof and has eight hours of battery life. Lots of other options available if you shop around too.
- Battery pack: Get a decent battery pack for your phone to carry you through the festival. Tech Advisor gave the Zendure A2 Power Bank 4.5 stars (out of 5), making it a safe choice.
- Glitter: No festival checklist is complete without glitter. If you want to wear glitter at the festival (and why wouldn’t you?) try and make sure it’s biodegradable. Glitter is a microplastic, and by 2021, will be forbidden at 61 independent music festivals. You can get eco-friendly glitter from Eco Glitter Fun and Glitterlution.
- Camera: If you want to take photos and videos without draining your phone’s battery, it might be a good idea to take a separate camera. The EZVIZ Lite Action Camera (£69, available on ao.com) is waterproof and shoots video and photos. Alternatively, Curry’s PC World has a wide selection.