Female at music festival

A solo female’s guide to music festivals

Music festivals happen all around the globe, and they’re a blast! There’s nothing better than a group of like-minded people getting together to rage as a rave family. Because festivals typically last anywhere from three nights to a week, it can be difficult to find a group that can take the time off to hang. If that’s the case, don’t forgo the show! Here is a music festival guide to foster solo travel for women.
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Music festivals have grown in popularity over the last decade within every genre imaginable. The length of the festivals, production value, and overall pomp have increased significantly, shifting what would be a rather typical concert setting into an interactive experience. Festivals now feature not only music but art, videography, costumes, connections to local small businesses, and so much more, making them a perfect option for solo travel for women.

These festivals have become a vacation all in themselves, as some last over a week in length. Therefore, it can be difficult to find people to travel with, especially if you are traveling outside of your state, province, or country. However, you always have the option of traveling alone.

As a female, this can feel scary, especially if this is your first time traveling alone, but solo travel for women doesn’t need to be nerve-racking if you research your venue, prepare ahead of time, and stay aware of your surroundings. If you’re thinking about traveling to a music festival alone, check out this helpful guide to get your mind right and your itinerary on point.

Which music festival to attend when considering solo travel for women

You may have a music festival in mind or you might want to try something new. There are a ton of festivals across the globe, all with various vibes, locations, genres, and durations. Here are a few of the top festivals in the world that provide great options for solo travel for women. Check them out and see which one feels right for you!

United States

Canada

Europe

South America

Asia

International

There are also some music festivals that travel around the globe. Here are the top international festival brands with the best parties!

If you’re still unsure, start with the genre of music. From there, you can research music festivals that fit the bill based on your location or location you wish to see.

Next, decide if you are looking for a larger festival with big stages and popular artists or a small stage vibe with an intimate group. This choice is solely dependent upon how you like to party and the energy you wish to feel.

Lastly, check out the reviews on social media and festival forums. See what people have to say, and specifically, look at the comments females leave. If a lot of women don’t like the vibe, it may not be a great choice for you. The more you know, the better off you’ll be in the long run when planning solo travel for women.

Where to stay when traveling as a solo female

Once you decide on a music festival, it’s time to decide where to stay. When it comes to festivals, you typically have two options for lodging: camping and hotels. You want to ensure you feel comfortable and safe wherever you choose to rest your head each night. Take a look at this breakdown and decide which accommodation is best for you.

Car camping

Most festivals have car camping options, which is a large part of the experience itself. However, there are a lot of items you need to make it work, and it may get pricey if you’re going alone. This list is a basic breakdown of the essentials you’ll need if you want to camp.

  • Vehicle
  • Tent with stakes and tarps
  • Popup/canopy to deflect the heat and rain
  • Cooler(s) (and possibly a grill)
  • Chairs and table
  • Sleeping bag, pillow(s), air mattress/sleeping pad, extra blanket
  • Utensils, trash bags, plates, cups
  • Food and nonperishables
  • Flashlight, lanterns/fairy lights, fan, batteries

You may or may not have all the items on this list, but these are the basic necessities for car camping at an event. If you have your heart set on camping, see what you can borrow from loved ones and look for used items on Craigslist or FB Marketplace.

The duration of the festival will also dictate what you need in regards to supplies and food. However, many music festivals offer camping packages and glamping options on-site for those traveling out of state/country. Many feature pre-built tents, bedding, and basic camping gear, so you don’t have to haul your whole life across the globe. This option is also great for meeting people who don’t live in the area and might be traveling alone, too.

Most festivals also feature 24-hour food options, so if you have the cash, you won’t need to worry about packing a grill or a week’s worth of food. However, if you’re on a budget, bring as much as you can!

Hotel lodging

Booking a hotel for a festival in this day and age is pretty simple, as festival websites feature various lodging options with free shuttles to and from the venue. If you book early, you can get a hotel room in a prime location that will house other like-minded music lovers right near the venue. This option provides a great way to meet friends with the luxury of having a private space to retreat to at the end of the night.

What’s also great about a hotel is the convenience. You have your own room, shower, comfortable bedding, and the ability to store all of your things in a secure location. It may cost a little more, but that price might be worth your peace of mind.

However, if you’re looking for a room after most of the hotels are booked, you may have to stay farther away from the venue. Check Google Maps and scan the area near the festival. Be aware: if you book a hotel that isn’t sponsoring the event, you’ll have to provide your own transportation or rely on taxis/Ubers to get you to and from the venue.

What’s right for me?

This is the ultimate question, especially if this is your first time looking into solo travel for women, and the answer is dependent upon what makes you feel comfortable. If you’re looking for less stress and a simple option, hotel lodging is the perfect solution because you don’t have to worry about packing a car full of items. This is also the right choice if you don’t feel safe camping alone. You’ll be in a hotel with others who are traveling to the event, so you can make friends yet retain your privacy. Hotel lodging is a win-win.

Let’s look at the flip side. Car camping is a large part of the festival experience, and the people who go this route are like-minded individuals looking to have a great time. That’s not to say everyone will be chill, but the majority of people attending these parties want to relax and have fun. Your camping neighbors can become life-long friends under the PLUR label, and they can be a huge help when it comes to setting up and enjoying the music. If you’re ready for this opinion, grab some tent locks and start prepping your checklist!

No matter which option you choose, the goal is to be aware of your property and your surroundings. Be cautious of who you invite back to your room/tent, and be sure to secure your tent with a tent lock. Don’t bring anything valuable that you would hate to lose, as sometimes, people don’t act like their best selves. It’s always best to prepare, so you can enjoy the full experience of the music and the vibes without having to worry throughout the entire trip.

What to pack when planning for solo female travel

Packing is the hardest part of festival life, especially if you like to dress up and get wild. If you’re anything like me, festival outfits are the first thing to go in the suitcase.

First, check the weather in the area for average temperatures during that time of year. While you may get hot dancing, it might cool down significantly at night. If you’re traveling in the warmer months, be sure to pack appropriately so you don’t overheat. The goal here is to have an array of options, especially dependent upon your location. The weather can change at a moment’s notice, so you want to be prepared for it all. Packing a raincoat and a sweatshirt is always a smart move, no matter the location.

Another important packing tip connects to footwear. Most festival grounds are large, which means you’ll be walking when you aren’t dancing. You want to make sure you bring comfortable options, along with weather-appropriate footwear if rain happens to enter the chat. This is especially important if you’re camping. Parking lots and woodsy areas can turn into a muddy slip-n-slide real quick. Check out the lodging map and see how far you’ll have to walk to the venue. It never hurts to bring a backpack with an extra pair of comfortable shoes! And ladies, never leave home without bandaids.

Along with clothing options, remember to pack all your toiletries, especially if you are camping. Adding in hand sanitizer, wet wipes, toilet paper, and other feminine hygiene products, especially post-COVID-19, are important additions to any travel kit. Bring some snacks and a refillable water bottle no matter where you’re staying, and if you can swing it, make some Kandi bracelets or some stickers to pass out to new friends.

How to hang when planning solo travel for women

Whether this is your first time hanging solo or you’re a solo female travel pro, there are a few things to consider when planning a solo trip to a music festival.

  1. Watch your drinks: Always go to the bar or water refill station and get your own drink. Don’t ask anyone to watch your drink while you run to the bathroom, and if you place your drink down and walk away, leave it there. It’s always better to be safe than sorry, especially when traveling alone.
  2. Don’t take candy from strangers: Festival culture is connected to many substances that are said to enhance the experience. When we say don’t take candy from strangers, we mean be aware of what you are taking and from whom. Whether it’s literal candy or something else, if you don’t know the person, it might be a good idea to forgo the experience.
  3. Watch what you say: Most people are friendly and kind, but there are some people out there who don’t know how to hang. Be aware of how much information you’re giving to others. Be kind and share, but don’t tell anyone you just met that you’re alone, where you’re staying, where you live, or any other information that could violate your privacy down the road. Keep it light and friendly. If someone keeps pushing for info, that’s a huge red flag.
  4. When in doubt, walk away: While festival culture is all about making connections and sharing the love, some folks don’t align with that message. If you ever feel uncomfortable or get bad vibes from a person or group, excuse yourself politely and head to another area. Your gut never lies. If this situation does arise, stay in areas where there are lots of people, and stay in well-lit spaces if it’s dark out. Follow the same advice you’d give yourself walking around a large city.

The goal of this list isn’t to scare you. These are a few reminders to keep you aware of your surroundings when considering solo travel for women. However, festival life is all about community, and there are various online groups that can connect you with others who are traveling alone, too. Check out the Facebook pages of the festivals you are attending, as they typically have a community page to help people get and stay connected. There are also various Instagram influencers and festival pages that bridge the gap between music lovers from all around the world. Check-in with these groups and make some connections before you go. That way, you have some people to hang with when you get to the venue.

Before you go, it’s a good idea to share your location on your phone with loved ones. That way, if something does happen, you get lost, or you do need support, you’ll have the technological support of someone back home. This segues into another important reminder about keeping your cell phone charged. If you’re staying at a hotel, this is an easy fix, since you can charge your phone and extra battery packs at night. However, most festivals have battery packs you can rent. No matter the situation, make sure you always have a fully-charged phone in case of emergencies.

In case of emergency

The rave code that has been passed on to the music festival circuit is called PLUR, which stands for Peace, Love, Unity, and Respect. While the majority of people will stand by this code, sometimes, a bad apple can get thrown into the mix. If you ever feel unsafe or are made to feel uncomfortable in any way, go directly to a festival worker and ask for help. Even if that person can’t help you, they can find someone who can.

At most festivals, there are tents or stands dedicated to offering support, along with various police officers on-site. These are the people designated to help you feel safe and stay that way. Whether it’s someone who won’t leave you alone or you simply want someone to walk you to your car, the festival crew is always ready to support your needs. Never be afraid to ask for help!

Final thoughts

Solo travel for women doesn’t have to come with a warning, but there is a reality we have to face before embarking on a solo trip. Research the venue, pack accordingly, and stay aware while you’re partying at the venue. When in doubt, ask for help. You’re never alone, even if you’re traveling by yourself.


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