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Coachella Festival Survival Guide: 13 Tips To Make Your Trip The Best Ever

There is nothing more exciting than the all-time favorite, music-filled, Coachella festival, but nothing kills the festival vibe more than unpleasant weather, bad festival wardrobe, crazy big crowds, and obscene rules! And, each year the festival party gets crazier, festival outfits more hip, the crowd gets bigger, and rules get more strict.

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Coachella Survival Guide – Read our tips below!

In order to have the best trip ever and most memorable Coachella experience to-date, we’ve prepared a complete 2014 survival guide that includes what to pack and how to navigate the entire music festival season.

RELATED POST: These Celebs Will Inspire Your Coachella 2015 Festival Outfits

We’ve included the essentials that most festival party-goers forget about grabbing before heading off to the concerts. When it comes to a fashion or beauty 911, every festival gal needs a custom emergency kit!

RELATED POST: Coachella Fashion That You Can Wear At The Beach

Below you will not only find the crucial contents of such a fashion emergency kit, but also tips and tricks to keep you energized and ready to dance the night away under the sun and moon of the Indio, CA sky.  This isn’t just your everyday packing list – so take notes!


13 Coachella Festival Survival Tips

1. Don’t forget your wristband – All those times you stopped yourself from buying new shoes, just to save up to buy this year’s golden ticket, would be for nothing if you forgot the simple cloth bracelet responsible for your admission to the Coachella festival. Double-check, and then check again, that there is no chance of losing your wristband during your festivities.

2. 911 beauty accessories – A fashion or beauty emergency is bound to happen while dancing all day long. Fanny packs are a festival favorite. Pack yours with extra hair ties, bobby pins, and safety pins in case of a broken zipper or lost button. Don’t forget lip balm, tissues (it may save you from a paperless port-a-potty), and baby wipes to keep you from stinking up the campgrounds while you sweat enough liquid to fill a lake. Ewwww!

3. Travel first-aid kit – You can find them anywhere, and they’re so small that you can fit them in your backpack, fanny pack, or boyfriend’s pocket. Most travel first-aid kits come filled with band-aids of all shapes and sizes and anti-infection cream. Throw in a travel size hand sanitizer bottle and you’re ready to rock out and stay healthy. You also can’t forget bug spray, and you’ll never have enough sunscreen, so pack more than you think you’ll need. Of course, we highly suggest locating all medical tents at the festival beforehand, in case of any serious injury or sickness.

4. Over-sized scarf instead of a towel – This may or may not be the smartest trick we ever learned about attending Coachella. A light cloth scarf not only serves as a headwrap to absorb sweat, but it can also take the place of your small towel and serve as something to sit on. When you don’t want to wear it, or use it as a blanket, you can tie it on your backpack or around you waist. Brilliant, right? You’re welcome.

5. Plan it out – Social media has come in handy, yet again. Every site you see will tell you to plan out your days at the Coachella festival. If you haven’t downloaded the Coachella app for your smartphone, do it!  You can see the line-up, schedules, and food selections all in one application. Perfect!

App Tip: Another smartphone app and website that will take your music festival to the next level is Showscoop. It’s known as the Yelp! for concerts. Not sure which bands you want to make time for in your busy concert-going schedule? Take a look at Showscoop to read reviews of all this year’s featured artists to make your decision a little easier.

6. Save battery life – The venue for this famous music fest is notorious for demolishing any cell service. So, save your battery only for important photo ops. You can lengthen your phone’s battery life by dimming the screen brightness on your phone and putting your phone on “airplane mode” while you don’t plan on using it.

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Try new trends for your Coachella outfits and wardrobe!

7. Fill your backpack with layers – What’s in your backpack is just as important as what’s on your body. The weather at the Coachella festival is known for being deathly hot, but at night the cold can creep up on you. Throw a pair of pants, a jacket, your favorite beanie, and an extra pair of socks in your bag of choice in order to survive any curve ball Mother Nature may throw at you.

8. Explore new fashions – There’s no place like Coachella to try something new!  Fashion wear is a main focus of the festival, so feel free to step outside your comfort zone when it comes to festival outfits and style.  Leave your everyday jeans and tee at home and swap them out for printed shorts and that crochet halter top you’ve secretly been admiring. This is a place where everything cool is in style and the dress code is whatever you want it to be!

9. No sandals – Most important and also most forgotten rule of any musical festival – do NOT wear sandals. Not only will your feet hate you by the end of day 1, but you’re putting your little piggies out in the open to get stepped on by 200+ lbs. guys. Ouch! Bring a variety of ankle boots to ensure the safety of your sweet feet.

10. Cash only – Unless you want to risk losing your debit/credit card, or pay ridiculous ATM fees, you should survive strictly on cash. Bring enough to where you are able to feed yourself, but not enough that you’re entire life’s savings is gone in case your money falls into the wrong hands. If you’re fortunate enough to have a safe place to put the weekend stash in a safe place, do so, only taking out what is needed for that day!  Also, don’t keep your cash sitting in a front pocket of a bag because in a crowd of crazies, some hands may try to wander where they don’t belong.

11. Splurge on grease, but don’t binge – With all the temptation of the famous Coachella churros, don’t forget that your body is a machine, or temple, that requires certain nutrients in order to function properly. There are plenty of fruit, veggies, and lighter options for meal choices than pizza, burgers, and fried everything.

Drink Tip: Drink water, water, and more water. Seriously…we can’t stress enough how important it is to drink water all day and night. But, if you must catch a buzz, stick to beer because the hard stuff is not only overpriced but will get watered down faster than you can say ‘chug’.

12. Never be alone at night – It’s a big venue, and it’s easy to get lost in the daytime. Firstly, never separate yourself from your posse…especially at night! There are a lot of people that choose to partake in illegal, mind-altering substances that can put you in danger. Put the buddy system in full-effect at all times, and always be aware of your surroundings. This includes when walking around moving vehicles, because you never know how intoxicated the drivers may be.

13. You don’t have to see everything –  While everyone wants to soak in every little bit of the Coachella festival that they can, just know that it’s okay if you don’t see everything. The experience in itself is mind-blowingly awesome, and just put “enjoy yourself” at the top of your to-do list.

About The Author

Sammi Mendoza grew up in Simi Valley, CA and moved to San Diego in 2010 to play soccer and attend San Diego Miramar College. Since the fall of 2013 she has been attending San Diego State University studying communication. In her free time, she coaches girl's soccer at a local high school and enjoys time with her sorority sisters of Gamma Phi Beta. Her favorite hobby is to sing Beyonce as loud as possible - any song, any time, any place. Follow Sammi on Instagram: @ssssammi and Twitter: @MENDOheart6

3 Responses

  1. Ryan Santos

    Any new tips for chella 2015? I’m a native from the Coachella Valley. I grew up and went to high school there and then moved to beautiful San Diego. I go every year and have since I was 16 this will be my 9th year and I’m stoked!!! I think you nailed everything up above, some things I would not have thought of which are great, you should post something for the new cumbers this year!


  2. Stagecoach Festival: 7 Trends To Include In Your Concert Wardrobe | Nubry - San Diego's #1 Fashion, Beauty, Events And Lifestyle Blog - What To Wear, Insider Tips, & Celebrity Trends

    […] Stagecoach festival is like the Coachella of country music, and just like Coachella, what you wear is just as important as who’s performing. With Stagecoach 2014 falling just 7 days after weekend two of Coachella, you need to plan your outfits way in advance if you want to be on top of your country fashion game.  Otherwise, how else would all the cowboys take notice of you?  If you’re stressing out about what to pack just as much as you are about what to wear, look at our music festival survival guide here. […]


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