From stolen bank cards to getting lost on a campsite, anything can go wrong during festival season, so here's our advice on how to deal with any pitfalls.
Ten Commandments to Surviving Festival Season
Every year, the festival calendar seems to get more and more packed. From quirky boutique offerings to sprawling camping weekenders, if you’re not hitting at least one festival this summer you are seriously missing out. Read on for our handy list of tips to help you make the most of the music - and everything else.
You definitely don’t need to bring your entire wardrobe when you’re heading to a festival. Stick to a few versatile items which you can mix and match depending on the weather, and you’ll have a lot less luggage to lug around when you get down there. And when you have to tramp for miles across the fields to get to your campsite, you’ll definitely thank us.
Choose the right camping spot
Choosing the right camping spot is a deceptively tricky process. It might seem like a great idea to have easy access to the toilets, but by the end of the weekend you’ll regret it. Camping too near to fences or trees is another no-no for similar reasons. Choose somewhere a little off the main thoroughfares to avoid too much mud - and people falling over your tent.
Establish a landmark
Once you’ve found that perfect camping spot, it’s always a good idea to put an identifying landmark somewhere on or around your tent. When you’re surrounded by thousands of tents that all look pretty much the same, it’s easy to get lost. So bring a flag or make your own!
Don’t forget to refuel
Once upon a time, the best meal you could hope for at a festival was a suspect sausage in a stale bun slathered in off-brand ketchup. That’s all changed now, and there’s a serious amount of quality food stalls at most Irish festivals. Whether you’re a vegetarian or a committed carnivore - with healthy stir fries, mouth-watering curries, perfect pies and more on offer - there’s pretty much something for everyone. So do yourself a favour and try to have at least one decent meal a day. Your body will thank you.
Don’t be a stick in the mud
Even if you’re lucky enough to get some sunshine for the weekend, thousands of people tramping across a field always means mud. So if you bring the wrong footwear, you could end up ankle deep before you’ve even got started. Pack an old pair of runners that you don’t mind taking some punishment, and wellies are never a bad idea either.
Get to know the neighbours
Half of the fun of a festival is the crazy characters and random friends you end up making. So get talking to your neighbours in the campsite. Not only could you make some new lifelong friends, you’ll also have extra people who can keep an eye on your stuff, who you can party with when you’ve lost your pals, and who will sort you out with an extra beer when your stocks are running low.
Pick a meeting point
Phone batteries die and friends get separated. That’s why it’s always a good idea to agree on an emergency meeting point before you get fully into the festival swing of things. Pick out a prominent meeting point somewhere on the festival grounds and you can always meet up there later if you manage to lose your friends.
Ok, this might seem to fly in the face of the rest of our advice, but it’s alright to get a little lost sometimes. You might have planned out your band-watching schedule to the minute, but often the best festival experiences happen when you stumble upon an unexpected band or stage when you’re least expecting it. The headliner’s set may be forgettable, but you’ll be telling your friends about that post-midnight bagpipe/didgeridoo jam you saw for the rest of your life.
Get a good night’s sleep
Forget lugging an air mattress and pump around with you - or wasting all your spending money on luxury camping - the one item that can help you get a seriously good night’s sleep at any festival is a set of earplugs. So pack some plugs! You’ll thank us when you blissfully sleep through the impromptu acoustic performance in the campsite at 5am on Sunday morning. There’s always one.
Lost bank card? Don’t panic
It’s easy to mislay things in the middle of a festival field. But if your AIB debit or credit card is lost or stolen, it’s definitely not the end of the world. Just call the AIB Card Services team on 1800242227 if you’re in Ireland – or on 0035312695022 if you’re at a festival abroad. You can also let us know about a lost or stolen card by using the AIB Mobile Banking app or logging onto AIB Internet Banking. Our team will take care of the rest, and you’ll have a new card and PIN sent to you ASAP. Follow us on @AskAIB and Facebook.
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