13 Insanely Helpful Music Festival Tips for First Timers

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13 Insanely Helpful Music Festival Tips for First Timers

music festival tips
By Kaitlyn Finley

By Kaitlyn Finley

Raveraide Blog Writer

Looking for a list of the very best music festival tips for first timers?

Your first electronic dance music festival is a special experience and will probably change your life. You will feel an instant connection to the music, meet the most welcoming and loving people, and feel a sense of belongingness and community like you never have before. 

Unfortunately, the beautiful and fun aspects of a rave can sometimes come with a few challenges. Taking the steps to ensure that your festival experience runs smoothly will help the weekend go from good to great! We crafted the perfect list of tips and tricks that will certainly come in handy for your first EDM festival!

Best Music Festival Tips For First Timers

1.) Download the app Radiate.

Radiate is an amazing app that acts as a social media platform, messaging system, and marketplace for ravers! One of my favorite features of this app is that you can connect with people going to the same festivals as you and with people who share similar interests. Another cool feature is the marketplace, which allows you to easily buy and sell tickets, clothes, rave gear, and more. If you’re in need of any new rave buddies or have questions about your first festival, Radiate is an awesome thing to have!

best music festival tips

Photo by @ty.gunner on Instagram

2.) Prepare your body!

Even though it may not feel like it, your body goes through a lot at festivals. You’ll be partying harder than you ever have before, and trust me, you will feel EVERYTHING during your post-festival recovery. Before every festival, I like to have what I call a “prep week.” During this week, I make sure to get a good amount of sleep, eat properly, exercise, and drink a lot of water. Also, make sure to fuel your body by eating a big nutritious meal each day before you leave for the festival, and take vitamins and supplements if you can!  All of these things will help your body stay healthy, happy, and energized all weekend! One of the best products you can get to help you prepare & stay replenished throughout a festival weekend is Raveraide.

Raveraide was designed for ravers, by ravers with your most important needs in mind while attending a weekend long event. It contains a proprietary electrolyte cell salt blend designed for rapid hydration, as well as a brain boosting nootropic blend that aids in enhanced mood, clarity, focus, and creativity. It’s also got a full vitamin spectrum and immune support blend, designed to support your immune system and help prevent you from getting sick after festivals.

The best part is, unlike other hydration supplement alternatives out there, Raveraide contains ZERO artificial flavors, sweeteners, or dyes/colors. It also doesn’t contain crazy high amounts of sugar like most options out there, using only 2 grams of organic coconut sugar to help flavor the product. Although we may be biased, this product was created to be the all-in-one solution for enhancing your festival weekend, and is arguably one of the best things you can take to ensure your weekend goes as smoothly as possible. 

music festival tip

Photo by @tommywolfephotography on Instagram

3.) Be prepared for any weather outcome.

The weather plays a big part in your festival experience, and we all know how unpredictable Mother Nature can be! Make sure to check the weather forecast to see what you’ll be working with. Comfort is key at these kinds of events, so be sure to dress accordingly and pack anything you would need for any weather changes. For example, a pashmina can act as a blanket if it gets cold, a cover for your skin if the sun is too intense, or a makeshift umbrella if it starts to rain!

useful music festival tips

4.) Coordinate rides in advance.

Trying to figure out rides can definitely be the most annoying part of music festivals. It can take hours to get out of the parking lot, Ubers are at least a million dollars, and the last thing you want is to be stranded for two hours at a gas station desperately looking for a way home (been there, done that). If you live near the festival, try to ask some trusted friends if they would be able to drop you off and/or pick you up. If you don’t know anyone who could give you a ride, you still have a couple of options. If you are staying at a hotel, you can research shuttle options that either the hotel or the festival itself may offer. When all else fails, there is a feature on Uber and Lyft where you can schedule rides in advance, and will usually be a lot cheaper than what you would pay the day of!

top music festival tips

5.) Prioritize harm reduction and drug safety.

The wonderful thing about music festivals is that they are a safe space where you can have fun any way you want. However, it is extremely important that you are educated on certain “ways of having fun” and know how to protect the people around you. If you are partaking in anything, you MUST test it, learn the proper dosage, and make sure you have a trusted friend who can help you if you need it. Websites like Bunk Police and DanceSafe are great places to find fentanyl strips, test kits, and lots of helpful information about drugs. When you enter the festival, be sure to also locate the Oasis zones, which are secluded areas you can go to receive help if you become too overwhelmed. Always remember that everyone who works at the festival wants to help you and will never judge you!

 

6.) It’s better to over-pack than under-pack!

Going to a festival fully prepared will improve your experience by a ton! Make sure to pack a bag, fannypack, or hydropack with everything you think you’ll need for the day. When doing this, don’t forget to double-check the festival website to know what items you can and cannot bring into the venue. To see what items you should always bring with you to a festival, check out our other blog post titled 11 Rave Essentials You Need to Bring to Your First Festival!

most helpful music festival tips

Photo by @ty.gunner on Instagram

7.) Don’t forget the necessities!

While packing for a festival, make sure you pack the essential items FIRST! These items include your ticket, your ID, and money. Don’t be the person who realizes they forgot their admission ticket while next in line to enter the festival! Worst pain ever. When packing your money, make sure to bring more than you need because you never know what you’re going to buy! Festivals usually have awesome vendors and food options, so come prepared! 

 

first time music festival tips

8.) If you’re going with a group, bring a totem.

You’re walking with your group, you look away for a second, and then boom, they’re nowhere to be found. What is this sorcery? If you are attending the festival with a large group, I highly recommend bringing a totem. A totem is basically any tall object used to help locate a group. They can also be considered as pieces of art or just something fun for people to look at. They can include flags, signs, stuffed animals, pool noodles, and much more. My rave friends and I just recently made a totem and as a group that gets separated often, it has saved our lives. He is a pool noodle named Woodle (Wook Noodle)!

 

helpful music festival tips

9.) Explore the festival grounds as soon as you get there.

Unless you’re racing to make it to a set, try to explore the entire festival right when you get there. You paid a lot of money for the ticket, so make sure to see everything and get your money’s worth! One of my favorite things about EDM festivals is the amazing decorations and attention to detail. You never know what you’re going to stumble across at a festival. Exploring the festival will also help you get a good grasp on where everything is located, so you don’t get super lost while trying to find certain things!

 

10.) Establish a group meeting point.

This is crucial if you’re going to a festival with a big group! There’s going to be a lot of people and you will be doing a lot of walking, so it’s almost inevitable that someone will get separated from the group. Instead of frantically looking for them for hours, find a spot before you do anything where everyone can meet if someone gets lost. If people in your group want to go off on their own and do different things, make sure to establish a meeting place and a time when you all can meet up halfway through the day!

music festival tips for first timers

11.) Use timestamps when sending texts to your group at the festival.

Music festivals are notorious for having terrible phone service, which can often cause a big delay when sending or receiving texts. Especially when texting about locations or meet up spots throughout the night, you’ll want to make sure you time stamp your message so that your group knows when that message was actually sent. The last thing you want is a member of your group frantically trying to find you at a meet up spot that you sent 45 minutes ago. This simple tip will save you a bunch of headache and make communication throughout the night go a lot smoother.

first time rave tips

12.) Bring your absolute best vibes!

Again, music festivals are a safe space where anyone can go and feel the most comfortable they have ever felt. EDM is becoming more popular than ever, so we all must do our best to ensure that PLUR (the concept of Peace, Love, Unity, and Respect) stays alive and thriving. Make sure to walk into the festival with no judgment, good vibes, and a helping hand if anyone needs it.

best music festival tips for first timers

13.) Bring things to trade and gifts to give out!

If one of your festival goals is to make friends, bring gifts and/or things to trade with people! In my opinion, it’s the easiest way to meet people and the best way to break the ice. The most popular trading item is Kandi, which is jewelry made of colorful beads and charms and usually includes a cute or funny message. It’s super simple to make, and you can find supplies at Walmart or Target! You can also bring little gifts to give out! These can include pretty much anything small and cute, like rubber ducks, sprout hair clips, stickers, disposable diffraction glasses, and more. I still have Kandi and gifts that I got at my first festival, and they will always hold a special place in my heart!

best first time music festival tips

Photo by @kandi.bar on Instagram

So there you have it! Music festivals can be such an incredible experience if you take the time to educate and prepare yourself beforehand. Remember to check out our post on the top rave essentials to bring to your first festival so you can make sure you’re ready to go. And if you find yourself feeling a little nervous about the whole experience (which is TOTALLY normal), we put together an article sharing our top ways to help reduce & eliminate music festival anxiety

This post was all about the most helpful music festival tips for first timers!

Kaitlyn Finley
Kaitlyn Finley

Kaitlyn was born and raised in sunny South Florida and is now living in Orlando. She is attending the University of Central Florida and working towards a bachelor's degree in marketing. Her music festival journey began in 2019 at EDC Orlando, and it was absolutely life-changing. Her love of EDM grew exponentially as festivals continued to gift her the joys of love, friendship, and belongingness. Her main goals in life are to attend as many festivals as she can and eventually have a career in the EDM entertainment industry. Experimental bass is her genre of choice, Okeechobee is her favorite festival, and LSDream is her current favorite artist. Follow her on IG @kaitlynsexperience!

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