In case you didn’t notice, music festival season kicked off last month at Coachella down in Indio, CA and was followed closely by Canadian Music Festival in Toronto. Next up is Sasquatch in George, WA this Memorial Day weekend.  As a matter of fact, the line ups for music festivals all over North America have been announced and tickets sales are well underway!

Synonymous with party drugs like MDMA, music festivals generally attract folks who are simply looking for a good time but there is also an underbelly to these events that attracts unscrupulous drug dealers and opportunists.  So, whether you’re a music festival junkie or a first timer, there are a few things to consider before you enter the gated grounds of the increasingly popular music festival.

Festival goers need to be aware of the combination of heat, dehydration, marathon dance sessions and tainted drugs that will undoubtedly be offered up at any outdoor music festival.  With that in mind, we’ve put together a list of safety tips for doing music festival season like a pro:

  • Check the festival website for safety advisory and lists of prohibited items before you go
  • Plan your ride home before you go
  • Check the weather and pack appropriately
  • Leave your valuables at home, bring only the cash & cards you need
  • Prepare an exit strategy, have a plan for what to do in case there is an emergency
  • Set times throughout the day to check in with someone back home
  • Choose a well-lit camp site
  • Mark your tent and property with your initials and postal code
  • Get to know your camp site neighbors
  • Learn the layout of the festival grounds before you indulge at the beer garden
  • Know where the nearest security and medical stations are to your camp site
  • Stay hydrated, bring a refillable water bottle
  • Stay in groups and within your group have a festival buddy who will always have your back
  • Look out for others even if they are not your festival buddy
  • If you find yourself alone, make the festival staff and volunteers aware of your presence
  • Never go anywhere with a stranger
  • Never take drinks or drugs from strangers
  • Utilize free testing at the SafeRave, PartySafe or Ankors booth if you do decide to take drugs
  • Charge your mobile daily, most festivals have charging stations
  • Be aware of anyone who seems to be looking for vulnerable women and don’t let your friends wonder off with someone they just met
  • If you see something sketchy going on, report it
  • Support the festivals that promote safety and skip the others

We know these all sound like common sense tips BUT, we also know how quickly common sense can go out the window once you’ve entered the rush of the festival environment.  We encourage you to plan ahead, consider these tips, have fun and stay safe this music festival season!