Six basic hacks that can save you a lot of cash at music festivals

These easy budgeting hacks can make you a smarter festival-goer

author_img Ujjainee Roy Published :  09th August 2019 01:17 PM   |   Published :   |  09th August 2019 01:17 PM

Two festival goers at Magnetic Fields festival (Image: Facebook)

The music festival season is upon us, and if you’ve already started on your itineraries and are working on that extra cash, we have assembled some helpful hacks. While festivals like SulaFest and Road to Ultra are a few months away, tickets for NH7 Weekender, Magnetic Fields, Ziro Music Festival are already out, and it’s time for you to make a move. 

While you need quite an extensive budget planning for international festivals like Tomorrowland or Coachella, for desi festivals, you just need some smart resourcing. Ideally, if you’re travelling to another city for a weekend-long music festival with your squad, you should start planning a couple of months in advance. Besides the money, there are other details you should be alert about; usually, the social media pages of the festival give out crucial updates about line-ups or accommodations and are very responsive. As for your budget woes, here are some smart tips which you should know about.

Early tickets always help

Early Bird or pre-sale tickets are usually much cheaper - but festivals like NH7 Weekender release them even before announcing the line-up, which may have you on the fence. But if you’ve freed up some space on your calendars already, definitely book them early. For instance, this year, early bird tickets for Weekender Pune were being sold at Rs 3,000; but if you go for them now, it will cost you Rs 4,000 a pop.

Be quick about booking commuter shuttles

Modes of commute are sometimes set up by festival authorities, but not always. Moreover, you’ll have your luggage and possibly gear or cameras, for which you may need some extra room. Many festivals are held in remote areas of a city, where the conveyance is an issue, and you may be overcharged. The smartest thing to do would be to fix your accommodations and transportation simultaneously. You can also get in touch with a friend who has been at the festival or seek help from the organizers.

That's one way of getting around (Facebook/ Ragasthan)


Pool in for accommodations

Most festivals have a Bring Your Own Tent policy, and you can find clean pillows and bedding over there if you just carry the tent. If you’re going with at least a couple of other people, accommodation charges should not be a burden at all and will cost around Rs 1,500 each. Though most festivals do not have official campsites or residential venues, you can find several options which are recommended by organizers. It’s best if you can camp near the festival site, but if it’s too crowded or expensive, you can always opt for trusty campsite packages. Ziro Music Festival also had a homestay option last year, along with hotel packages. Weekender Shillong has a list of campsites on their official site, like Highwinds Pine Yard and Camp Finderbridge; a two-day stay at a camp 300 metres from the main venue had cost festival-goers something around Rs 2,500.


A campsite at a desert music festival (Photo Courtesy: Facebook)

Do not forget your essentials

You do not want to go looking for a shampoo or sunglasses at a music festival; you’ll probably find them, but it may just drain your budget. Make a list of all you need weeks ahead, and co-ordinate with your friends if possible.

As for the grub…


Pizzas at NH7 Weekender Pune (Photo Courtesy: Facebook/ NH7 Weekender)

Many people carry their own food and alcohol, but some festivals have a policy against that. Read up on all the guidelines thoroughly; if you have to sustain on festival food for two days, you must know that almost everything, from a slice of pizza to beer, is overpriced at festival sites. You may have to be vigilant about price tags - just check how much the cheese dip costs before you order your nachos, that’s all we’re saying.

There will be shopping

We all think we don’t need to shop at a music festival until we come across some authentic merchandise from our favourite band. Besides merch, many music festivals set up flea markets and sustainable DIY units where you can find amazing stuff. It’s always wise to set some cash aside for impulsive shopping if you don’t want to put all the craziness on your credit cards.