You are here

How to attend a festival on the cheap

Relevant to
Making the most of festival season is often high on the priority list once Uni ends for the summer. With so many festivals to choose from at home and abroad it can become pretty pricey to see your favourite artists. Here’s a few money saving tips to help you cut the cost of your festival fun.

Get in for free
Of course this is the dream - getting to see all your favourite bands but not having to pay a penny for the privilege. It’s possible but you’ll have to do a bit of work. Some charities attend festivals to raise awareness and money. Many advertise for volunteers to come along and help them. You’ll have to work the hours they ask and do the jobs they need doing but other than this you’ll get to enjoy the rest of the festival for free.

Be an early bird
Most festival organisers offer special prices for early bird tickets which cost less to get into the event the earlier you buy them. Early bird tickets go on offer at different times depending on the festival - some even go on sale right after the festival finishes for the following year, others will be a few months before. Keep your eyes peeled on the festival’s social media channels and make sure you budget for the price of your ticket well in advance.

Don’t buy through ticket touts
Ticket touts will sell tickets for hugely inflated prices so try to avoid them at all costs. They are also known to sell fake tickets too. If you do decide to buy a ticket from an unofficial channel check out this guide to avoid getting ripped off.

Shop around 
It’s tempting to be drawn to the large festivals everyone has heard of but these events tend to carry the largest price tag. If you do your research you’ll likely find smaller festivals more local to you which will be less crowded and some are even free to get into.

Pay smart 
It may be tempting to use your student loan to pay for your festival as a treat - I mean you’ve worked hard all year...why not? But it won’t feel like such a good idea when you’re struggling to afford to pay for food at the end of next term.

If you haven’t saved enough to pay upfront seriously consider if it’s worth getting into debt for. Fear of missing out could turn into much bigger problems if you can’t pay back the money you borrow. Whatever you do, don’t go over your overdraft limits - your bank could charge you expensive fees and suddenly your debts will feel unmanageable.

If you’re planning to work a summer job and know you’ll have enough money for the ticket in a few weeks, you could consider applying for an interest free credit card. You must be sure to pay it off before the interest kicks in though and only get one if you’re disciplined and good with money. You’ll need to pay a minimum repayment each month until you’ve cleared the balance. If used correctly a credit card can also help build a good credit score but always use with precaution and compare online for the right deal for you.

Get cheaper travel
If there are a few of you going, driving to a festival can be the cheapest way of getting there because you can share the cost of petrol and parking.

If you’re taking the train look at ticket splitting sites which find you the cheapest journey to take. If this isn't an option at least try to get an off peak ticket, if you have a rail card use this too.
If you’ve got the time coaches are generally a cheap way to get you to the festival with all your luggage.

Get protected 
It’s easy to lose your phone and other valuables while you’re at a festival so it’s important you get insurance just incase. If you’ve already got contents insurance double check your things are covered away from your home and if not hop on a comparison site to compare different insurance options.