How to Survive Governors Ball Music Festival


If you’ve weighed the festival pros and cons and plan on attending Governors Ball this year or really any music festival having a solid game plan is essential! Today I’m breaking down how to survive Governors Ball Music Festival and providing you everything you need to know to have a good time this weekend. 

Make sure you check out the top 10 underrated acts from this year’s lineup and keep your eyes peeled for artist recommendations for plenty of other summer festivals including the brand new Panorama, Lollapalooza and more!

If you know anything about Gov Ball then you know that it’s always at the start of June and by consistently being scheduled there the festival has a habit of oscillating between blazing hot summer heat and monsoon-like downpours that result in mud, mud and more mud. The beginning of June can be pretty fickle which makes it pretty hard to plan for this festival in advance unless you simply plan for every possible scenario or wait until the last minute. 

Still, there are always essentials that everyone should keep in mind no matter what mother nature has in store. If you want to know how to survive at Governors Ball Music Festival the answer lies in a mix of common sense and a great attitude!


See the full recap of Gov Ball 2015!

Day 1 || Day 2 || Day 3


Do Stay Hydrated

Whether the sun is out or it ends up raining it’s best to remain hydrated when you plan on being active. At the festival, you’re going to be spending your time constantly walking back and forth to the different stages, you’ll probably dance and you may have a drink or ten two. None of those things are going to end well if you don’t make sure that you keep the water coming! At Gov Ball there are free water stations so there is no excuse!


Do Bring Cash

ATMs are no fun! Save yourself the hassle of having to track an ATM down and then wait in an obnoxious line so that you can buy food or something from the merch booths. Who wants to stop the dance party because they have to go wait in an unnecessary line? Just don’t do it. 


Don’t Ever Take Off Your Wristband

Want to know how to survive Governors Ball? Don’t remove that wristband! For those three days that you’re at the festival wristbands are life! Just think of it as a temporary addition to your arm party. If you remove it and lose it you’re out of luck so don’t be that guy who took it off to shower after Day 1 and then can’t re-enter on Day 2. 


Do Operate Under the Buddy System

The area of Randall’s Island, where Governors Ball takes place, isn’t very big. I can’t imagine that you could get lost there but I do know that no matter what size a festival is you can most certainly lose your friends if you’re not careful. Always travel in pairs, keep an eye out for one another, watch each other’s alcohol intake and pick out a designated place to meet in case your group gets separated.


Do Bring a Portable Charger

Cell phone service can be hit or miss at events like this and the spotty service combined with the constant desire to photograph every moment can kill your battery life. How sad would it be if in the middle of recording an awesome performance by an old favorite or a new artist your phone dies? Or what if you do get lost and can’t text your friends? Pros know exactly how to survive governors ball and portable chargers are the secret sauce of life!


How to Survive Governors Ball Music Festival - Going to Gov Ball? Find out how to survive Governors Ball Music Festival and arrive with all the essentials to have the best NYC summer festival experience!


Do Bring Snacks

My picky eating tendencies have groomed me into becoming an A+ snacker. I usually always have something to snack on with me just in case I find myself in a scenario where the food available is far from what I would actually eat. 

At a festival, snacking is not only a great way to keep your energy up but it’s a great way to cut costs. Festival food can be pricey! Just make sure the festival you’re attending allows you to bring outside food. Not all of them do but sometimes you can get around it.


Do Cover Your Toes

You might think that flip flops in June sound like a good idea but don’t try it. With all the walking you’ll be doing it’s best to wear something comfortable with support. Not only that, but the weather can be tricky and you might end up in a mudslide.


Don’t Be Squeamish

Weird stuff happens at festivals. Sometimes you might have to trudge through unknown sludge, sometimes you may have to hop over vomit and you might see a bit of blood and maybe a passed out teen or two. It’s not glamorous but it won’t ruin your fun and it does happen so keep that in mind. 


Don’t Whine

No matter what happens have fun. If you loose something or if you end up covered in mud just have fun. You’re having an amazing time, you’re listening to top notch talent and you’re truly experiencing a once in a lifetime event. (Click to Tweet) 

Sure, Gov Ball will come back next year but this exact lineup and all your fellow concertgoers will only be together once. Embrace the moment!


Extra Essentials:

  • Do Keep a Sunny Disposition and a Friendly State of Mind
  • Do Expect Crowd Surfers
  • Do Bring Sunnies, Sunscreen, Hair Ties, Hand Sanitizer, Refillable Bottles
  • Don’t Bring Professional Cameras, Large Backpacks, Chain Wallets, Large Umbrellas or Wads of Cash 
  • Don’t Wear Heavy Makeup, Anything Designer, Strapless Tops or Only a Bikini


Headed to Gov Ball? Which tip on how to survive Governors Ball Music Festival do you think is the most important? 

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