The Ultimate Packing List

Ultimate Packing List

Camping Supplies

  • Tent – This 8 person Coleman rocks!
  • Sleeping bag – Coleman Sleepin Bag 
  • Extra blankets
  • Blankets to sit on
  • Pillows
  • Air mattress (if you pack this also include pump or extra batteries for the pump, a patch kit for repairs, and sheets to cover it with)
  • Head lamps
  • Lantern
  • Tarp
  • Hammer
  • Pocket knife
  • Extra toilet paper
  • Bath towels, at least one per person and an extra
  • Chairs
  • Coolers (it’s a good idea to pack a large for drinks and to use as a table and a smaller one for food
  • Febreeze for the tent
  • Lysol spray for the tent
  • Cleaning spray (Windex, etc.)
  • Jugs of water
  • Stereo or music player (also include extra batteries, CD’s or whatever you need for this)
  • Car inverter for electronics
  • Jumper cables
  • Tent locks
  • Extra car keys (if you are camping with friends you may want to give them extra car keys or keyless entry devices so they can store valuables in the car and have access to it if you get separated)
  • Hand warmers, hot hands
  • Flag or tiki torches (to mark your campsite so you can find it easily)
  • Optional items like a fold out table (regulation beer pong size or otherwise), or a rug
  • Hammock
  • Shade Awning-Small shade tents, large umbrellas, and Sunbrellas can be helpful to block out sun and rain during the shows if the festival allows them in the venue
  • Tapestries to hang up for decoration
  • Ash trays
  • Trash bags

Music Festival Packing List

Food and Cooking Supplies

  • Camping stove
  • Extra gas canisters
  • Biodegradable dish soap
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Pots, pans, pot holders, spatulas, silverware, plates, napkins (a good rule of thumb is to figure out what kind of food you are bringing and make sure you have the necessary equipment to prepare it)
  • Cups
  • Straws
  • Ice (fit as much as you can into the coolers, making sure to keep half a bag in the plastic to use for drinks.  Ice will be sold on the festival grounds but it will be twice as expensive as in the real world so stock up as much as possible before entering)
  • Condiments (butter, ketchup, mustard, etc.)
  • Shot glasses
  • Flasks (often no glass bottles are allowed inside so put your liquor in big flasks when possible)
  • French press for coffee
  • Coffee or instant hot chocolate and cider, and don’t forget cream and sugar
  • Lots of bottled water

Food (as far as food goes it’s up to you what to bring but I try and pack things that are easy to snack on as well as meals that can be easily prepared in the dark or with limited supplies.  We always pack lots of chips, sandwiches, and granola bars because those seem to be the things we eat the most.  Grilled cheese and soups are also good, especially when it‘s cold outside.)

Toiletries and Personal Items

  • Travel shampoo/conditioner
  • Solar Shower
  • Face wipes
  • Baby wipes (there are not always convenient showers available so if you refill jugs of water you can use these to brush your teeth and hair.  Baby wipes can help you stay clean throughout the day) *please do NOT dispose of these in porta potties!
  • Toothpaste/toothbrushMouthwash (this is convenient when you are getting ready to go to sleep and you’re too blotto to deal with toothbrushes and water)
  • First aid kit (Band-Aids, Neosporin, etc.)
  • Pain medicine
  • Pepto and antacidsAny medications you are taking (birth control, anti-anxiety pills, motion sickness meds, etc.)
  • Cold medicine
  • Vitamins
  • Emergen-c or airborne
  • Cotton swabs
  • Sunscreen
  • Lotion
  • Razors or shaving kit
  • Condoms (if you don’t mind dirty festival sex)
  • Hair brush, clips, ties, bobby pins, headbands

Clothes and Gear

*As far as clothes go it’s up to you what to pack.  My only suggestions are to bring things you don’t mind getting messed up because you will be outside partying all weekend and things can get pretty dirty.  Especially if there is any chance of rain, make sure to pack extras of everything so that you can put on dry clothes whenever you want to.  Also make sure to bring some long sleeves even if it is a summer festival because if you get a little sunburned it can be chilly once the sun goes down.

  • Shoes (pack at least one pair of walking shoes as well as flip flops and sandals)
  • Rain shoes or crocs
  • Socks
  • Skirts, jeans, shorts
  • Tanks, t-shirts, hoodies, jacket
  • Sleeping clothes, sweat pantsBathing suit
  • Bandanas (these can be wildly handy for many reasons as well as for fashion)
  • Hats
  • Sunglasses
  • Belts
  • Undies and bras
  • Scarves, gloves, skull caps
  • Rain coat
  • Jewelry
  • Back packs or Camelbak

These are the essentials but you should also think about fun stuff to do at the campsite like hula hoops, glow sticks, Frisbees, soccer balls, playing cards and anything else you like to do.  I also like to bring a book in case I need a few quiet minutes away from the madness.  Also a paper and pen can always be good to have around.  People often also wear crazy costumes and things like that so go nuts.  And don’t forget your camera!

Music Festival Packing List

About the Author

I started this guide because I am in love with the music festival scene. It is my happy place, my joy, and what I look forward to always. With this in mind I wanted to use my own experiences (the good, the bad, and the ugly) to help out other festival goers and give them a little insight into this beautiful and sometimes challenging world. It's always good to be prepared and I felt like there was a lack of specific and helpful advice about the scene out there in internet land, so my hope is that this guide will help build a community and keep us all safe for many seasons to come.

24 Comments on "The Ultimate Packing List"

  1. Kacy Harbert March 25, 2011 at 3:59 pm · Reply

    Lighters and more lighters. Yours will get lost, borrowed and not returned. When you think you have too much water pack more. I also like to bring Downy Wrinkle Release. It makes your clothes smell nice and when stuff is getting thrown around the tent everything becomes a wrinkled mess!

  2. John Sims March 31, 2011 at 1:57 pm · Reply

    spray bottle, works for cleaning up cooking messes, as well as the seat in a porta-potty. Gerber tool or a multifunctional camp tool w/can opener,blade, screw driver, etc.Day pack, small backpack for wandering around during the day. Aloe Vera Gel. Poncho, Duct Tape, fuel for torches or lanterns.Twine, sewing kit.Sun tea jug, plastic tub for washing dishes or feet. Milk crate, for transporting stuff, doubles at camp as an extra seat or foot rest.walkie talkies,cutting board for food prep,lip balm, and a plastic drop cloth for covering up things in a hurry when the weather turns. And a great attitude!

  3. admin March 31, 2011 at 3:01 pm · Reply

    Kacy, could not agree more with the lighters! Water water water!! i need more water!! Downy knows what time it is!! :)

    John, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes!

    you guys rock!! we really appreciate the input!

    :)

  4. Pharmg402 May 16, 2011 at 7:58 am · Reply

    Hello! ebeafbk interesting ebeafbk site!

  5. TiKi May 17, 2011 at 10:27 pm · Reply

    Gotta say it lol….. DEODORANT. It’s not on the list, not a hippie slam. peace

  6. John June 21, 2011 at 4:02 pm · Reply

    Tent Locks? not a good idea, nothing says come rob me more than a tent with a lock on it, only tells would be thieves there is something of value inside and a quick slice with a penknife and your kit is gone.

    • kathyjocamp June 21, 2011 at 9:05 pm · Reply

      While I agree that locking a tent is like locking a Jeep, I find them to be more of a deterrent than a fail safe. People are more likely to notice someone slicing a tent open than just unzipping it and walking in. Theft for the most part is not a huge problem but keeping valuable items in your car and making friends with your neighbors is really the best way to avoid it. Tent locks are just an obstacle for piece of mind.

  7. Aeryn (Festie Batman) September 1, 2011 at 9:31 am · Reply

    We always bring one of the larger (3+ gallon) jugs of water with the spigot on the front. We leave that in the back of the car, or with the dry goods, and use it to fill up a smaller gallon jug that we keep in the cooler (no need to keep 5 or more gallons of water cold all weekend).

    Also, be sure to bring an empty spray bottle to fill with water for washing your hands and cooling off, etc. You waste a LOT of water trying to wash your hands with a gallon jug, and you don’t want a dirty rag on the mouth of your drinking water.

  8. admin September 1, 2011 at 10:07 pm · Reply

    love it, Aeryn! great advice, thank you!!

  9. alcohol free foaming hand sanitizer December 3, 2011 at 6:49 pm · Reply

    It’s actually a cool and helpful piece of info. I am happy that you shared this helpful information with us. Please stay us up to date like this. Thank you for sharing.

  10. Edgey June 18, 2012 at 3:10 am · Reply

    Very helpful list! Thanks! Bring on Body & Soul (Ireland), I’m prepared ;D

  11. ZipTieFiend June 22, 2012 at 1:15 pm · Reply

    Zip Ties, Zip Ties, Zip Ties!!!

    • kathyjocamp June 25, 2012 at 10:31 am · Reply

      good call on that, those are handy :)

  12. Tina June 25, 2012 at 9:00 pm · Reply

    Bungee Cords!!

    • kathyjocamp June 26, 2012 at 2:15 pm · Reply

      Yes ma’am!

  13. Joyce July 13, 2012 at 3:25 pm · Reply

    This Iis great. I have read books that weren’t as good as this list. Thanks for the original list, and all the add ons. Especially the zip ties!
    EE

    • Skip Blankley July 15, 2012 at 4:16 pm · Reply

      glad you enjoyed the guide! zip ties are a must!

  14. Karen November 23, 2012 at 2:13 pm · Reply

    Great idea for fresh cool water?
    Freeze your bottles and throw ‘em in the cooler. It’s water.. It’s ice … It’s space-conserving …It’s AWESOME!

  15. Brennen March 11, 2013 at 2:27 am · Reply

    Last year at Sasquatch! I brought a marine battery fully charged with an inverter. Lasted til the morning of the fourth day. Had music blaring and multiple neighbors’ phone’s charging for the majority of the day and night without having to use the car battery.

  16. Belinda July 18, 2013 at 2:04 am · Reply

    As a girl at a festival we try maintain our hair and makeup but one thing I love is that no matter what you forgot to pack it’s a great way to make friends. That’s how I met one of my closest friends. Oppikoppi in 3 weeks!!! Thanks for an awesome list.

    • ceben August 3, 2013 at 2:24 pm · Reply

      OPPIKOPPIE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
      GREAT LIST GREAT AUTHOR GREAT COMMENTS
      JUST ONE PIECE OF ADVICE…

      put nametags on valuables…
      I put my name and cell no on my camera and inside my wallet and got my wallet back minus some “items” inside back 3 days after tomorrowland…. and ive lost my camera at oppikoppi in south africa twice and got it back with awesome random pics and made some great friends all thanx to a brother label gun…

      Keep up the good work and remember a festival is only as good as the people who attend… be friendly to fellow festaval goers and help out the virgins in need…. take a sharpy and put ur number on all the awesome ppl u meet and keep in contact with them…. keep making the circle bigger and keep doing festivals…

      • kathyjocamp August 4, 2013 at 6:36 pm · Reply

        Thanks so much for your comment! Love the tips and the attitude, you’re a beautiful human :)

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