With only three days to take in dozens of your favorite artists and shamelessly pressing yourself up against the masses of sweaty concertgoers, it's important to make the most of your Coachella experience.
Imagine: you are essentially on stage with Calvin Harris. Ok fine, you are actually behind the fence and several security guards. But, essentially you are right there. The moment is intoxicating. Katie Perry is about to crowd surf right on top of you, obviously swept up in the moment as well. You go to grab your phone for this all-important Snapchat opportunity, and…it’s dead.
Why, oh why, cruel Coachella gods?!?!
Right, because you forgot your phone charger this weekend. It happens.
Though it may seem impossible not to enjoy yourself at this epic music festival, there are several important details that can make or break a successful Coachella weekend. Don't be that car full of girls driving in for camping without food, water or any actual sleeping arrangements. Even though there are stations for water, food and other forgotten necessities, preparing these items in advance will save you time, stress and money.
When packing this year, take a few points from Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs and this helpful article to ensure a blissful Coachella.
PSYCHOLOGICAL NEEDS AKA “THE BASICS”
Perhaps you are scoffing at this point. “Who forgets food and water?” you ask. Laugh now, but many naïve Coachella-goers has driven into the parking lot thinking that he or she could easily drive back out to retrieve these basic necessities. Fun Fact: you can't. Therefore, it's important to come to Coachella with everything you're going to need for the day or weekend.
Drinks and Snacks: Bringing a hearty supply of food and water is imperative to making sure that your energy stays high and your mood stays positive. A cooler filled with drinks and snacks should offer the solution to any issues in the aforementioned areas.
Also, be cognizant of what you classify as worthwhile investments in this area. Beer and candy can only take you so far. It's important to drink water and consume actual meals in order to survive the valley’s heat and the continual rush from stage to stage. Not to mention, water not only keeps you hydrated, but also it is useful for teeth brushing and other general cleanliness activities.
Sunscreen: Though many of you may consider yourself invincible to the sun and its rays, having sunburn will put a serious damper on your weekend. Take it from all the pale kids out there. That red line from your high-waisted shorts will not only look hilarious, but it also may result in physical discomfort. Therefore, sunscreen is the third basic necessity that will help make sure you and all your friends are happy campers.
SAFETY – THE SECURITY OF HOME & BODY
Having a secure and comfortable place to sleep at night, as well as all the necessary clothing and living items, will make for a successful Coachella weekend.
When packing your car, it is important to consider how many people are staying with you, where they will be sleeping and how much space is in your trunk. Remember that you’ll need to accommodate everyone’s bags, as well as your living and food supplies.
When packing clothes and personal items, try to only bring the necessities. A small bag will help out your fellow campers and will make getting ready in the morning an easy endeavor.
To accomplish this: plan out your outfits in advance to save space, and avoid the embarrassing faux pas of missing your favorite artists due to wardrobe malfunctions.
Car Camping and Tents: Though people can often be found sleeping in their cars or RVs, Coachella is truly the land of tents. Make sure to figure out how many individuals can fit in both your car and tent, and bring enough bedding for both locations. Also, have secure locations inside the car or tent where you can store valuables, like cameras and money.
Blankets & Sleeping Bags: Though the days spent at Coachella are oftentimes hot, the nights can be bitterly cold. Bringing a variety of blankets and sleeping bags will ensure that no camper is left uncovered. Suffering through a sleepless, chilly night could put a serious damper on your fun at the festival. Don’t let it happen to you.
Fanny Pack: When it comes to security, nothing in this world may be more important than the fanny pack. Consider it a portable, shoddily made lockbox. This little bugger will sit on your hip, securing your most important possessions and making crowd surfing an easy, carefree endeavor.
Cell Phone & Charger: The all-important cell phone. Without it, it may be said that our generation would cease to properly function.
At Coachella, charging stations are only available in common areas, and chances are you will be so wrapped up in the music you won’t have that kind of time to spare. Still, a cell phone is an important tool for communication and of course, Instagram.
Don’t forget to keep a careful eye on your phone during the hustle and bustle of shows, and remember to pack your phone charger. After all, grandma and grandpa will definitely want to see pictures.
Books: Yes, it is music festival, and yes -- the focus should be on the music. However, reading a good book in the morning while lying in the sun is not a bad way to start the day. Consider taking a little “me time” each morning and cracking open the pages of a favorite classic novel or trashy magazine. You choose.
Bathing Suit: Important for tanning and wearing in place of a shirt inside the Sahara tent, a bathing suit will ensure that you will emerge from the weekend significantly less sweaty and with better tan lines. Whether you are taking a break and lying out in the sun or dancing with a couple of friendly strangers to Zedd, a cute bathing suit will bring you infinite happiness. (Just don’t forget the aforementioned sunscreen.)
Converse: These comfy shoes will enable you to walk long distances, while protecting your toes from being trampled by other eager concertgoers. No longer shall you fear the repercussion of mosh pits on your pedicure; your feet will be happy and bruise-free in a pair of Converse.
LOVE & BELONGING: YOUR FRIENDS
Coachella can be an incredible experience, so you should make sure to share it with people who are even more exceptional. Try to spend the weekend with some of your closest friends. The stories from the weekend will far outlive the pain your wallet felt when you purchased the ticket.
Also, don’t be afraid to go see an artist by yourself and finding bands that you can all appreciate with others. Being able to share memories makes them all the more meaningful. Plus you don’t want to look like a music-junkie, loner the whole time. Or maybe you do.
SELF-ESTEEM & ACTUALIZATION: A FEW FINAL GOLDEN RULES
-Respect Yourself, Respect Others: This goes for all things – musical tastes and personal space in the tent included.
-Be Confident: Be outgoing and meet new people. Stand your ground when it comes to artists you must see. And don’t let the pressure of the Coachella environment push you in to any situation you’re not totally comfortable with.
-Be Spontaneous: Take chances on new music and new friends. You never know what you’ll discover.