Festival season is here. Hangout Festival kicks off in Gulf Shores, Alabama on May 15, and that opens the floodgates for Bonnaroo, Lollapalooza, Mysteryland, and more, which means that it's time to get planning.
One important thing to consider when you're buying tickets, is which friends you're taking along for the ride. The right crew can make it a magical experience, and the wrong friends can make you wish you'd just spent that money on an all-inclusive resort vacation instead.
Here's our guide to picking the best company for your summer festival season.
Definitely Bring These Friends
The 'Resourceful' Friend
Festivals can be hard work, especially if you’re brave enough to camp out. There’s no plumbing, air conditioning, or solid walls around to keep you comfortable, so you’ll need to be a little bit resourceful at times. In those cases, it’s always handy to have that one friend around: The one who can pitch a tent, create a makeshift dining space and whip up a meal using four ingredients, with no microwave or stove. You can thank them with a 5-star meal when you return to civilization.
The '24/7 Party' Friend
Over the course of a two-day, or three-day festival, you’ll have the chance to see more bands perform that you’d probably fit into an entire year if you went to separate concerts, so it’s great – but exhausting. Inevitably, there will be a point where you just don’t have the energy to trudge to one more show, and that’s when you’ll need your 24/7 party friend. No matter what time of day, or night it is, or no matter how little you’ve slept, they’ll be determined to be front row at the Action Bronson show. That energy is contagious, and you’re definitely going to need it.
The 'Anything Goes' Friend
Festivals are a marathon, and every once in awhile you’ll need a little mental break to recharge. If you’re at Bonnaroo, that can mean finding a quiet corner spot in the grass to chill out, or at Hangout Fest, laying out on the beach for a few minutes. While the rest of the crew is still stage-hopping and dancing, you and your super laid back friend can grab the inflatable mattress and find a scenic spot to catch some rays and have deep and delirious life talks.
Definitely Leave These Friends Behind
Do yourself a favor and leave the princess at home, because music festivals aren’t exactly luxurious destinations. There’s a pretty good chance that your clothing will be covered in dust, sand, rain and, of course, sweat, from getting lost in the crowds. Not the mention that the porta-potty situation is slightly horrifying, and there aren’t any vanities around for makeup and hair touch-ups. So, if you know your friend will have a meltdown because her fresh blowout got a bit of frizz, save yourself the drama and leave her at the mall for the weekend.
The 'Lovesick' Friend
When you're at a music festival, it doesn't really matter what's going on at home -- because you're here to live in the moment, and Instagram or Snapchat about the moment. So don't bring your friend who can't stop texting or calling her boyfriend to give him a detailed update on everything you guys have seen, heard, eaten, or are thinking about doing. You think her boyfriend is pretty annoying anyway, so why should you have to stand around and wait for her to finish a phone call before you can sit down to indulge in a bucket of fried Oreos, soundtracked by Paramore.
The 'Non-Music Lover'
We all have at least one friend who never seems to know what’s going on with contemporary music. They haven’t updated their playlists since 1995, don’t stream music and definitely don’t listen to the radio, but they still insist on coming to the festival because they have FOMO. Sucks for you. Because you’ll be jumping for joy since you finally got to see Skrillex and Foo Fighters live, and they’ll be there to kill your buzz, because they’ll stand around looking completely bored, or complain that they just “don’t understand why people like this music.”