Planning for a Music Festival Abroad: What You Need to Know

The start of festival season usually coincides with the arrival of summer.  But with typically wet weather at home and hard-to-get-hold-of tickets at over-inflated prices, it’s no wonder that an increasing contingency of music revellers head abroad for their festival fix.  But, there are a few things to consider before you grab your bags and go.

Plan ahead

If you’re planning on going abroad for an international event like a festival, there’ll be more to think about and organise, than if you went to one at home.

For a start, make sure your passport is up to date.  You’ll also need to get yourself some adequate travel insurance, spending money, and travel tickets.  Consider where you plan to stay once you get there.  In keeping with tradition, most festival-goers hitch up a tent, but check that you can take one with you, or whether or not you’ll be able to hire one when you arrive.

If you’re staying in other accommodation, then check how far you’ll be staying from the event – the nearer, the better.

The all-important tickets

Whilst you may be familiar with UK event management/ticket outlets for festivals at home, things will be different for international events, so be cautious. Always buy your tickets from reputable outlets and make sure you know exactly what you are buying.

Check the ticket terms and conditions and cancellation policy beforehand, so you won’t be disappointed or surprised, should anything go wrong.  Have a look on the event’s website, if they have one, and check all the details.  Don’t just turn up in the hope of nabbing one at the gate, as otherwise it could be a long, expensive, wasted journey.

The travel

Bear in mind the time it’ll take to get to and from your destination.  If your international event is in a far-flung country, you might need a day or two to acclimatise before being submerged in festival frenzy.  The last thing you need is a body clock that begs for sleep when your favourite band are showcasing, so plan this carefully.

Again, allow sufficient time for the end of the festival and your return journey home.  If you’ve booked a flight that’s due to leave a few hours after the festival’s finale, then make sure you can steal yourself away to get there in time.

Other essentials

Whilst wellies and raincoats are usually top of the agenda for most home-based festival-goers, if you’re heading abroad then you might need to have a rethink on what to take.  If your international event of choice is the Burning Man out in Nevada, then sun cream, a good solid water bottle and light clothing will be more useful than waterproofs.

Laws and safety

Even if the festival’s line-up features names from your home country, respect the fact that you’re in a foreign land, with its own rules, regulations and laws, which might be different (and a fair bit stricter) than at home.  Restrictions may well be tighter with regards to what you can and can’t bring into the festival, so bear this in mind.  Levels of crime might also be different than at home, so always be vigilant and keep your personal belongings safe.

About the Author: This was a guest post submitted by Amy Fowler for AMA Events, who specialise in UK event management and international events. Find out more here or here. Photo by simononly.