15 Tips to Surviving Coachella Weekend

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First-timer? Been, but need a refresher?

We asked our in-house Festival Veteran to share all her secrets

#1: Bring a Refillable Plastic Water Bottle
This is such an important Coachella tip! Many Coachella rookies are so excited for their first weekend that they forget to drink water! Coachella makes it super easy by allowing up to 40 oz plastic water bottles & Hydration Packs (be sure to empty them out pre-security) and having lots of free water refill stations around the campgrounds. When you’re dancing, jumping around, drinking some ILM and walking 24892043+ all under the desert sun- you’re going to need it. A good rule of thumb is to drink at least 1 water bottle every 2 hours. If you’re drankin’ (#Beyonce), then water is even more important. Don’t be that guy (or gal!) that faints on day-1! Visit Coachella Rules for more info!

#2: Wear Sunblock
The sunshine and warm weather is what makes Coachella so much fun, but too much fun can put a damper on the following festival days #Lobster. So, lather up! Waterproof SPF 50 (no aerosols, though) is recommended. Bring a travel size of everything (lotion, hand sanitizer, sun block, wipes, 4oz I Love Micheladas bottle) to go through security quickly- full sizes aren’t allowed. Visit Coachella Rules for more info!

#3: Bring Comfortable Shoes & Clothes
Many people forget this simple fact: you will be on your feet for at least 13 hours and walking a minimum of 7-10 miles per day. Trendy and fashionable shoes may seem like a cool idea for flexing on the ‘gram, but by the time it’s midnight you will wish you had worn something more practical. Also, many people tend to forgot that deserts get very cold at night. Always bring something warm to wear once the sun goes down. Those temps drop drastically!

#4: Buy merchandise on the first day - if that’s your jam
The Coachella merchandise tent turns into a zoo every night as all the festival-goers are heading for the exits. The trick is to buy your merch at the beginning of the first day and keep it in a locker (more on that coming up!)

#5: Have a physical meeting spot for you and your friends
“The ferris wheel ticket booth”, “back left corner of the Mojave tent” and “ the entrance to the Heineken beer garden” are all examples of unique physical spots that you can meet your friends should you get separated (don’t be that guy). Cell phone reception at Coachella is spotty at best, so never text “where are you?” instead, send an affirmative statement like, “meet at the merch tent at 8:00pm.” It could be hours before they receive it and plans change so be #prepared.

#6: Bring a Small Flashlight
Not only is this an essential item for Coachella campers, but a small flashlight is very useful for the festival as well. Coachella veterans know that it is easy to lose your group of friends while walking through the crowds at night. If you have a flashlight (preferably one that blinks) the leader of your group can hold it up while walking through the crowds so that the rest of the group won’t lose site of him/her. DISCLAIMER: Flashlights are not allowed in the venue pero, you know. DO YOU, BOO!

#7: Sun’s down? Head to the Beer Garden (This is where our 4oz. ILM bottles come in handy!)
If you’re trying to limit your spending & not pass out early - save your boozin’ until the sun goes down & of course, be sure to enjoy your I Love Micheladas with your favorite beer! Remember, drink responsibly!

#8: The reality of Porta Potties

Stepping into a small human waste box that has been baking in 100°+ heat all day is quite an experience.  If you’re camping, be sure to bring extra seat covers (grab some from a local fast food restaurant on your way out to the festival), toilet paper, baby wipes and hand sanitizer. There are some actual restroom facilities on the grounds but those can get very busy with lines and lots of congestion.

#9: Be prepared for the Desert Winds

Bring your anti-allergy medicine because the dry dust and grass on the festival grounds irritates most people’s eyes and throat. Also, be sure to keep your meds in the prescription bottle with your name and info on it (or else it will be mistaken for something else and be confiscated). BONUS TIP: Bring a bandana or wrap for your face — trust us - dirt in your eyeballs is not fun!

#10: Save your Cell Phone Battery & Invest in a Battery Pack

It’s very annoying to lose your group of friends only to discover your cell phone is dead. Turn off your wi-fi, bluetooth, data and close all of your iPhone background apps. Enjoy the music, don’t sit around taking IG pictures of the ferris wheel all day — Unless it’s of an ILM bottle, of course! If you really want to make sure you’ll have battery, get a battery pack!

#11: Time! Time! Time!

Your time management skills will come in handy here. If there’s a band you really want to see, make sure you leave early to get there.  It can take a good 30 minutes to walk between the Sahara tent and the Main Stage when it’s crowded. Correle pero con cuidado! Also, If you’re staying at a hotel or condo, as opposed to camping, make sure to leave for the festival very early.  Traffic can get very congested around the Polo Fields and you STILL have to walk your ass through the camp-site and 2 security check points to get into the festival. Again, cute shoes are not worth it.

#12: Rent a locker 

Non-campers should consider renting a locker (use this site to book a locker).  It’s a good idea to keep a warm sweater, or even jeans in there so that you can be prepared for the cold desert nights.  The locker is also a great place to store any beers that you might’ve snuck into the festival grounds (you didn’t hear it from us) Another major ILM moment! Pero like, drink responsibly.

#13: Bring cash!

The festival grounds take credit and debit cards but cash is always a smart idea because uno nunca sabe!

#14: Print out the setlist

Festival staff do hand out set time pamphlets, but don’t spend time looking for one. Print out the set times before you arrive and highlight the artists you want to see. Making a plan is the best way to maximize your time. Having the list on your phone is great but that battery ain’t gonna live forever! Stay 100 and keep it 100!

BONUS TIP

Not going this year? Purchase your ILM mix at Vallarta, Northgate or www.Ilovemicheladas.com and stream Coachella online! Have HouseChella with your friends instead!

Kristene GarciaComment