Lollapalooza is one of, if not, the best weekends of the summer in Chicago. The music festival pulls thousands of people from across the country and world to Grant Park to listen to an incredible range of bands and artists. My first time at Lollapalooza was full of pure excitement, but with a healthy dose of nerves. I had no idea what to expect. Since this is going to be my fourth run, I’ve gathered a few tips on how to make it through one of the craziest events of the summer. So if you’re only going for 1 day or being a total badass and going all 4, here are my top 10 tips on how to survive Lollapalooza.
Empty Water Bottle
Bring an empty or sealed water bottle. There are water refill stations all over the park which gives you no excuse to not hydrate throughout the day. It’s going to be hot and you’re going to be jumping around and dancing a bunch, don’t pass out just because you decided to stupidly skip out on water for the day.
Girls and guys who wear makeup, do not forget the setting spray. I think we all know the wonders it can do by now, but for real, nothing sucks more than all your hard work sweating straight off your face. Urban Decay All Nighter is my personal go to, but Milani and Wet n Wild both have cheaper, drugstore options.
Check the Weather
Check the weather and plan accordingly. Be sure that your outfit is not only cute, but also practical. And after all that planning, be prepared for rain regardless of what the weather says. I mean you are in Chicago, you shouldn’t even be surprised if it starts snowing tbh.
Write Down Phone Numbers
Phones are such an uncertain thing during a festival and the last thing you want is to find yourself alone with your phone at 1%. Take the time to write down your friend’s phone numbers just in case your phone dies. Setting up a meeting place is also a super good idea and no, Buckingham Fountain is not the place to go. It’s huge and you’ll just end up walking around it for ages trying to find someone. Go for something more specific and memorable.
Bring Toilet Paper
Not even kidding. By day 2 this becomes a rare and prized treasure when in line for the disgusting bathrooms. It runs out hella fast especially when people are using it to tp the trees lmfao.
This year Lollapalooza has updated their bag policy so make sure to check that out and be sure that your bag and everything in it is allowed into the festival. It may seem like a drag, but just be safe guys.
Bring a Charger
Again, cannot stress how finicky technology can be. Do not let your phone die.
Make a Schedule
Lollapalooza has so many incredible performers and I think it’s fucking bananas that people don’t plan out who they want to see. Take the time a few days in advance and go through the lineup/schedule for each day and write down who you want to see, the time they are performing, and also the stage. Trust me when I say it’s so great to be able to physically see all the people you want to see and not be stressing that you might miss one of your favorite bands.
It’s in your best interest to either be 21+ or know someone who is 21+, jus sayin.
GRAB THE MAP AS SOON AS YOU ENTER AND DO NOT LET IT GO EVER. This map is the key to absolutely all information you need: it has the schedule, maps out all the stages, and has various other important information. This map is going to be a life saver, I promise you. I know Lollapalooza has their own app, which is cool, but that becomes completely useless when there is no service inside the festival. Fuck the app, grab the map.
And as a little bonus tip,
Don’t Forget to Take in the View
You are in one of the most beautiful cities during the most exciting weekend of the summer. I’m the type who is constantly moving trying to find the time to see all of the artists I want to see, but it’s just as important to stop and look around and absorb where you are. One of my favorite memories from Lollapalooza is being at the closing shows and looking at the skyline, feeling pure joy. Being surrounded by thousands of music lovers in one of the coolest cities in the US, if not the world, is unimaginable. Take it all in.
So there you go guys. Here are some top tips from a lolla vet. Don’t forget to stay safe, be mindful of others, and most importantly (and most cheesy) have fun this weekend.