My first tip would be to plan ahead. You want to have a good idea of what you're doing and when, otherwise you'll be pretty overwhelmed and unsure of where to go. You might want to schedule in breaks, so that you can get food or brave the toilets. Don't plan a full day of activity, because you will want to go to sleep at around 6pm, and miss the headline band!
Stay hydrated.This is the most important thing on this page, so make sure you do it. Most festivals will give out free water, or have drinking water taps. Make sure you use them!! Don't drink fizzy drinks as they dehydrate you, and the sugar will cause you to have a sugar crash. Instead, snack on biscuits or chocolate regularly throughout the day, to give you an energy boost. Also, make sure you eat breakfast before you leave the house (or the tent, I guess, if you're camping..), and eat regular meals throughout the day. The most important thing is that you look after yourself.
Go see bands you've not heard of before. The whole point of having stages with smaller bands on is so that you can discover a new band. I've found one of my favourite bands as a support act, so you'd be surprised who you'll find at a festival. If there are any cabaret stages or alternative stages, you should check those out, too, as there are sometimes comedians there, and we all need a good laugh. Plus, you get to sit down!!
Talk to people. I want you to say hi, or compliment someone while you're there. You could make their day. While I was at Reading, I saw some guys from a really small band there, just walking around, and I was wearing their merch, so I went and said hey... I'm pretty sure they thought I was a crazy stalker, though...
Take breaks. You won't want to see every band on the line-up, so why not get a pizza and sit at the back of the crowd, and just listen? It's a really good way to recharge your batteries, especially if you had to get up early to travel to your festival.
What to bring:
- Water bottle
- Suitable clothing, e.g. extra jumpers if it'll be cold, suncream if it's hot, etc.
- Food, like snacks and stuff.
- Phone, iPod, whatever, to take photos.
- Money for merch maybe??
- A bin bag, in case you're in a field and want to sit down.
- Any beauty items, etc. you may need.
- Toilet paper or tissues.
- Notebook and pen for band members to sign maybe???
- HAND SANITIZER
Chuck it all in a rucksack and you're good to go. Make sure you keep an eye on your valuables, and wear comfy clothes and a good pair of shoes, like Converse if it won't be muddy, or Doctor Martens or wellies if it will be.
So now you're all prepared for festival season next year!!! Have fun!!