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The ultimate UK festival packing list for any festival

The ultimate UK festival packing list for any festival

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Now updated for 2023!

So you are going to a festival this summer! Perhaps you are going to Glastonbury, Reading, or Leeds and you are wondering, what do I need to pack? Packing for festivals is hard, you have limited space, and you need to prepare for different weather conditions. If it cannot fit in your backpack, trolley, or arms, it isn’t coming! Preparation is key.

We have compiled the ultimate 2023 festival packing list for you, based on things that we take to festivals ourselves. The list contains absolutely everything that you might want to take to a festival in 2023 to help you survive and importantly have a wonderful time!

Contents:

Must Haves

ID 

This is essential if you are going to be buying booze (and are over 18!). Some festivals will give you an over 18 wristband, and some, e.g. Glastonbury will require ID in order to claim your ticket if it was bought as part of a coach package.

Ticket

This one should be pretty obvious… You can’t enter the festival without your ticket.

Money + Cards

If you want to survive you will need to purchase basic things at the festival such as food and drinks. You may feel like you are living in a different world for the weekend, but sadly things still cost money.

Taking some cash is always handy, but make sure you keep it safe! Not all festivals will take cards everywhere or they might have fees on their ATMs. Festivals like Glastonbury will also attract large queues at the ATMs. More and more however is card becoming king!

For the camp

Tent

Obviously, you need a comfortable place to sleep! We have put together a full guide on tents over here.

In short, we recommend a good-sized tent which will last you for a number of festivals to keep down on waste. It needs to fit you, all your gear, and perhaps some of your friends. It also needs to keep you and your gear dry throughout the whole weekend.

Please take your tent home with you when you pack up at the end 🙏

Sleeping Bag

We’d recommend a sleeping bag that will keep you nice and warm, it can get quite cold at night in the UK, even in summer!

Our choice: Active Era Professional Mummy Sleeping Bag

Looking for more info on sleeping bags? We have compiled our top picks over in our best sleeping bags for festivals guide.

Airbed/Roll-Mat

I used to be in the anti-airbed/roll-mat camp, but I tried one recently and converted! If you want to keep the hard ridged ground as far away from you as possible and get a good night’s sleep with no back pain the next day, I can’t recommend one enough.

Our choice roll-mat: Clostnature Self Inflating Pad for Camping

Our choice Airbed: Wyldness Camping Inflatable Airbed

Rucksack

A good sturdy camping rucksack is super practical if you want to maximise what you can bring and carry comfortably. The journey from the car to the campsite is usually long so we’d recommend you invest in a sturdy camping rucksack that has attachments for things like your roll mat and sleeping bag. The best rucksacks will last festival-to-festival for years to come.

Our choice: Doshwin 70L Backpack Trekking Camping Travel Hiking Large Rucksack for Men Women

Trolley

Talking of the journey to and from the car to the campsite, sometimes just a rucksack alone won’t cut it. We recently reviewed our best festival trolleys over here

Bottle

Many festivals, such as Glastonbury, have banned the use of single-use plastic bottles from their premises. We definitely recommend a decent reusable bottle and keeping them refilled through the weekend. You can even get collapsible ones now if you are looking to save on space when packing.

Our collapsible choice: Valourgo Collapsible Water Bottle

Our steel choice: Eco Friendly | Single wall Stainless Steel Water Bottle

What to wear

Wellies

A good pair of comfortable, waterproof wellies is key for a good time at a festival. Even if you don’t wear them, being caught out without them is far worse, trust me. If it does rain, and the mud arrives, make sure you have a decent pair of wellies as you will be walking long distances in them.

Our choice for Women: Joules Women’s Field Welly Gloss

Our choice for Men: Dunlop Men’s Wellington Boots Waterproof

Boots

We’d recommend taking a good pair of walking boots and wellies, but some prefer to just have walking boots. Whatever you do, please don’t take your prize pair of new trainers with you… You are going to be doing a lot of walking, in dust, mud, grass, puddles, etc, so a comfortable, sturdy pair of walking boots will go a long way. Better yet a decent pair will last many years of festivals and hiking to come.

Our choice for Women: Mountain Warehouse Adventurer Women’s Boots

Our choice for Men: Mountain Warehouse Adventurer Men’s Boots

Poncho

Super helpful to stay dry, and they are lightweight + easy to pack!

Our choice: Pockit Ponchos 5 Pack

Bum Bag

You might not look cool, depending on who you ask, but they are practical as hell. I personally will be rocking one at Glastonbury this year.

Our choice: Osprey Europe Unisex Daylite Waist

Clothes

You’ll need to bring clothes too, right…? Make sure you are covered for a number of days with clean clothes to wear!

To stay (somewhat) clean

Towel

Fancy a shower, face wash, or you just got wet in the rain, a towel is super handy. We recommend a small, microfibre towel as they dry fast and do the job well.

Our choice: Amazon Brand – Eono Microfibre Towel

Toothbrush/toothpaste

No one wants smelly breath…

Toilet roll

We’d recommend classic old-fashioned loo roll, or better yet, recycled loo roll over going with wet wipes.

Our choice: Who Gives A Crap – Eco-Friendly Recycled Toilet Paper 

Deodorant

Arms in the air? Got BO? Bring your deo.

Our choice: Nivea Anti-Perspirant Deodorant Roll-On

Hand Sanitiser

We’d always recommend keeping a travel-sized bottle with you.

Our choice: CAREX Aloe Vera Anti Bacterial Hand Sanitiser Gel

See Also

To stay connected

Phone

We recommend just taking your usual phone and getting a decent portable charger. You can opt to get an old-school or throwaway phone if you are worried about losing yours. If that’s the case we would always recommend the classic Nokia 105.

Portable phone charger

A portable charger is a must-have nowadays, especially if you are going to be trying to stay in touch with your friends throughout the festival. A decent one will last you many festivals to come and they are all-around handy things to have.

Our choice: HETP Power Bank, Portable Charger 25800mAh

For the hangovers

Energy Gels

It is inevitable that you wake up, it’s day two of the festival, and you are feeling pretty tired, maybe hungover… We’d definitely recommend some energy gels to keep you going for the rest of the days.

Our choice: SiS Go Isotonic, low sugar, high carbohydrate Energy Gel

Vitamin pills

Alongside energy gels, it’s good to keep the vitamin levels up, especially if you are living off basic festival food.

Our choice: Berocca Vitamin C Effervescent Tablets

For the Glampers

Eye mask

It usually gets pretty light early in the morning at UK festivals. If you need your beauty sleep, we would definitely recommend a good eye mask.

Our choice: Mavogel Cotton Sleep Eye Mask

Ear plugs

Protecting your ears is super important, and also so is getting a good lie-in!

Our choice: EarPeace Concert Ear Plugs

Inflatable Pillow

Now we really are getting into glamping territory. If you are looking to take care of your neck and improve your chances of getting to sleep, or you just have extra space in your bag, an inflatable pillow is for you!

Our choice: Trekology Camping Pillows

Camping chairs

A great addition for those who like to spend more time around the campsite. Another added benefit, you can use them whilst queuing to get into the festival…

Our choice: Trail Camping Chair Lightweight Folding Cup Holder

Solar-powered shower

Okay, no, this is the real glamping territory… If you really want to stay clean, and not queue for showers, this might be for you.

Our choice: Milestone Camping Solar Shower

Stove

Perhaps you want a hot cup of coffee, or you want to cook your own food. A stove is a great addition for the avid festival-goer and camper.

Our choice: Portable Camping Gas Cooker Stove

Recap

  • Must Haves
    • ID
    • Ticket
    • Money
  • For the camp
    • Tent
    • Sleeping bag
    • Airbed/roll-mat
    • Rucksack
    • Trolley
    • Bottle
  • What to wear
    • Wellies
    • Boots
    • Poncho
    • Bum Bag
    • Clothes
  • To stay (somewhat) clean
    • Towel
    • Toothbrush/toothpaste
    • Toilet roll
    • Deodorant
    • Hand sanitiser
  • To stay connected
    • Phone
    • Portable Charger
  • For the hangovers
    • Energy Gels
    • Vitamin Pills
  • For the glampers
    • Eye mask
    • Ear plugs
    • Inflatable Pillow
    • Camping chairs
    • Solar-powered shower
    • Stove

Looking to get a ticket to Glastonbury Festival? Read our guide on the best tips and tricks to help you secure yourself and your friends a ticket every year.

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