If you’re a keen festival goer you’ll know that this Sunday is your absolute last chance to pick up tickets for the 2013 Glastonbury Festival and that means we’re rapidly approaching festival season. Whether you’re into the big names like Reading, Creamfields or T in the Park or you prefer the more mellow like of the Big Chill or the Cheltenham Jazz Festival, there’s really something for every campervan owner on this year’s calendar!
However, if you’ve not attended a festival with your campervan before, it’s worth doing some serious preparation to make sure you know you’ve got all you need. Festivals are fantastic fun, but they’re not always easy to organise, so here’s some advice to help you make the most of your festival weekend wherever you go.
Buying and Checking your Tickets
Don’t just expect that you’ll be able to take your campervan to any festival you have tickets to as this won’t be the case. Almost all outdoor weekend festivals have specific tickets for campervan owners; occasionally they’re bought separately but usually they are conjoined with your entrance ticket. If you don’t have a campervan ticket, do not take your campervan! You will come away disappointed!
Stocks and Supplies
Most festivals run from Friday to Sunday, but there are a good majority where you can camp from Tuesday onwards. There are usually excellent and, often, very cheap facilities for food at most festivals but if you’re planning to cook you should stock up on what you need before you go: you probably won’t be able to return to the same pitch if you drive away at any point. The same goes for water and any chemical toilets.
Your biggest enemy when arriving at festivals is traffic, the lanes of Glastonbury struggle with tractors, let alone a hundred-thousand festival goers! You should expect to be waiting around for some time in your motorhome so you need to get stocked up on fuel before you go. It’s best to fill up around 30 miles outside of wherever you’re travelling to, this should give you enough fuel to get in and then get out with no problems.
If you have room, it’s very handy to have something like an awning when travelling to a festival. If the weather’s good it allows you to spend some time enjoying the sunshine in comfort, if it’s bad it gives you somewhere to hang your soggy clothes out to dry! Even if you’re planning on just throwing yourself in, it’s also good to have things like a basic camping stove for when you must just have that cup of tea!
Theft and Vandalism
Unfortunately, theft is extremely commonplace at festivals and vandalism is not unheard of. If you do have valuables like a mobile phone, take them with you wherever you go and do not leave anything on display in your campervan. Make sure your campervan insurance policy is up to date and you have the details handy and it’s best to leave things like laptops at home.
Each festival has a certain way of doing things and you need to do your utmost to respect it. Loud music late at night is feature of a rock and pop festival like Glastonbury, but it’s not really on for the more family oriented affairs we’re seeing a lot of across the country. Be respectful to the organisers and your fellow campers and you’re likely to make some really good friends.
Time to Leave
After the action is done, many people just want to get back as soon as they possibly can. However, you need to remember that most outdoor festivals are set on private farmland and any litter or waste you leave has a direct environmental impact. Make sure you’ve properly cleared your pitch before departing and take any chemical waste with you so you can dispose of it properly when you arrive home.
Festivals are designed for campervan owners, so if you’ve never been it’s a great thing to try and usually a very nice way to spend a weekend. Don’t get too carried away with the music before you arrive, remember the practicalities of festival going and pack just like you would for any other weekend away: after all, it is just a weekend away!