Travelling to a festival or large-scale event? Discover the most important festival safety tips to avoid falling victim to crime while abroad.
Are music festivals safe? What should I consider before travelling to a major event overseas?
These are questions many travellers ask themselves before they excitedly pack their bags for life-changing experiences around the world. From Carnival in Rio de Janeiro to India’s Holi celebrations, to the Running of the Bulls and rite-of-passage music festivals like Glastonbury and Coachella, taking a few festival safety precautions will help ensure it’s the adventure of a lifetime – for all the right reasons.
Here are some essential festival safety tips to help stay safe when travelling to large-scale events.
#1. Pack only the essentials
One of the most essential festival safety tips is to pack only the essentials, as there’s an increased risk of theft at large-scale events.
- Avoid being the target of muggers: leave designer clothes at home and try not to stick out like a tourist.
- Don’t bring along any high-value items that may attract thieves, such as expensive jewellery or watches.
- If you do plan on bringing expensive items, such as a camera or your smart phone, make sure to always have it close by or store it in a safe and secure spot when not using it. Do not keep your phone in your pants pocket, it’s an easy target.
#2. Be smart with your money
Being money-smart while travelling begins long before you board your flight, especially when attending a festival or major event.
- Some events, shops and restaurants might only accept a credit-card or just cash – many festivals now have dedicated wristbands for mobile payment – so know what the currency situation will be before arrival.
- Keep any credit cards and cash close to you and away from pickpockets.
- Use a wallet or handbag with RFID signal blocker technology.
- Find a travel credit-card with a 24/7 fraud support line so that you can cancel it at any time in the event of a theft.
- Don’t carry too much money on you at any time and avoid high-denomination bills.
- Keep a backup credit card and/or cash somewhere safe.
#3. Be extra cautious of festival safety at night
Taking in the sights and sounds of festivals – and exploring more of the country via local restaurants and attractions – is a must when travelling. However, it’s important to remember the risk of being in a dangerous situation grows a night.
- Avoid travelling or walking alone at night, if it’s necessary, share your location from your phone with someone and give them updates
- Take a cab or rideshare service instead of public transport
- Stick to well populated areas
- Always approach event security staff if you feel unsafe or threatened
#4. How to stay safe in large crowds
One of the main reasons people wonder if music festivals are safe is due to the dangers of being in a large crowd. Large crowds are a given at any festival or a major event, however stampedes and crowd crushes can result in serious injury or death, such as the 2021 Astroworld tragedy in Houston, Texas.
Festival safety tips for crowds:
- Always check where safety exits are located
- Have a planned meeting spot in case you’re separated from your companions
- Avoid being in the middle of a large crowd where possible
- Leave if you experience the crowd getting too dense
- If a crowd surge occurs, go with the flow, don’t fight against it. Try to travel at an angle to reach the edge of the crowd, and place your arms in front of your body to help maintain breathing room
Looking for more health, wellbeing and travel safety tips? Head here.
Discover how World Travel Protection can help you in a medical emergency
Whether you or your staff are travelling to major events around the world, your requirements might go further than these important festival safety tips. World Travel Protection is a 24/7 travel and medical assistance provider that helps support its customers when medical, travel and security emergencies arise. Our Travel Risk Management Solutions help provide travellers with all the support they need pre- and during travel via our portal, app, and in-house experts. Fill out the form below to find out more.