I recently attended the 20th Vans Warped Tour! 🙂 As it was my first time, this post is dedicated to my preparation and experience. I hope it offers some guidance to other first time attendees!
What I Brought
I mainly followed the packing list on the Vans Warped Tour site. I packed my belongings in a drawstring backpack, which proved to be roomy enough to hold everything I acquired during the day!
- Blueberry Belvita Biscuits: These are high in fiber and help to boost and regulate your energy. As you will spend a lot of time in the sun and on your feet during the day, it is important to fuel up in a healthy way. Energy drinks, sugary foods, and fried fast food are not the way to go!
- Uncrustables: I brought these sandwiches for lunch. As I was unsure of whether homemade food would be allowed inside, these prepackaged sandwiches were perfect. I kept them frozen, and they had defrosted by lunchtime.
- Water Bottle: A water bottle you can carry with you will be important. Obtaining drinks is surprising difficult, especially if you are crunched for time. Not to mention that they do not let you keep the cap so you have to hold onto the water bottle! I would suggest bringing two, so you can drink one as you wait in line.
Personal Care Items
- Kleenex: These were useful for mealtime. The pocket form makes them easy to pack. It will not hurt to bring some along, especially if you have allergies, since you will be outside all day.
- Sunscreen: This is so important! As there is little shade, your skin will be red as a tomato if you skip sunscreen! Remember to reapply during the day. As you get busy, it is easy to forget. I focused mine on my shoulders and back, as those areas tend to get burnt the easiest.
- Hair Ties: If you are considering wearing your hair down (which I do not suggest), you will be happy you brought these later in the day! It feels great to get your hair off your neck during the hot afternoon.
- Sunglasses: Being out in the sun all day is difficult on your eyes. Putting these on during the day helps to protect them. Not to mention that it is very uncomfortable to be constantly squinting as you try to watch one of your favorite bands!
- Wallet: This is an obvious one! You will need to bring your ticket with you and some money. I recommend bringing $40-$100 with you in cash, depending on how much merch you plan on buying. If you are planning on buying food, definitely bring more, as it is rather expensive. (I had a $6 lemonade!) Bring some singles and fives, as breaking bills can be annoying!
- Phone: This is also an obvious one! If you plan on taking pictures with it, make sure it is fully charged. I recommend bringing an emergency charger to ensure that your phone will still be operating by the end of the day.
- Sharpies: These can be useful for autographs and planning out your day with the schedule.
What I wore
I decided to dress very comfortably for Warped Tour. I wore a lace bralette, a loose-fitting white tank top, and some cotton athletic shorts. Of course, I had to wear my black Vans. I recommend wearing light colors and breathable, flexible materials so you can move comfortably. I suggest against sandals, as it is easy to get your feet stepped on! I don’t feel that it is a priority to be dressed extremely fashionably. It is more important to feel comfortable and focus on the music! Just go to have a good time and don’t worry about what other people think of you!
I would avoid any face makeup, as your face will become hot and sweaty throughout the day. Just rub some sunscreen on your forehead, cheeks, and nose and let your skin breathe!
I wore some waterproof eyeliner from Stila. By the end of the day, the wings were still clean and sharp. As pencil can smudge and bleed, I suggest using a liquid like this one. I wore clear mascara to define my lashes and hold the curl. Because a dark mascara can bleed, I suggest skipping it or using a waterproof version.
Put on some lip balm, preferably one with sunblock in it. Lips can become burnt too!
- Eat a healthy breakfast! As you become busy during the day, it is easy to forget to eat! At least if you have a hearty breakfast working for you, you can remain energized. I recommend eating whole grains and fruits. Avoid sugary foods.
- Buy a schedule. This is very useful for planning out your day. It takes a lot of the stress out of Warped Tour! It includes a map and lists of all the stages and the times the bands are playing there. You would hate to miss your favorite band because of ill planning! It costs $2, so bring a few singles.
- Stay hydrated. Remember to take a few sips of water every once in awhile. The heat is exhausting, so some fresh, cool water can go a long way.
- Check up on those with you. If you came with a friend, communicate. Make sure they are feeling comfortable and well. Remind each other to drink, eat, and apply sunscreen throughout the day. And stay together, as it is easy to lose track of each other in a sea of people!
- Take a break. Block out some 20 minute time frames to sit down, drink, have a snack, and relax. These will help to keep you going throughout the day and give you an energy boost. An all day concert is already difficult enough on your body. It deserves a break!
- Go to signings! The lines can be daunting, but they are well worth the wait, especially if it is for one of your favorite bands!
- Put away your phone! I really advise against snapping tons of pictures and videos. Soak up the moment through your senses, not through your cellphone screen! There will be plenty of professional videos and pictures online afterwards. So maybe take a couple of pictures, but forget about your social medias for one day and enjoy yourself!
- Listen to new bands! With such a large lineup, there is bound to be a band you have never listened to before. Give someone new a try instead of just listening to bands you are familiar with. Maybe you will discover a new favorite!
- Get sleep! I went to Warped Tour on 3 hours of sleep…Not the best way to prepare for an all day outdoor music festival! Don’t be me. Get a good night’s rest!
Icon For Hire is one of my favorite bands, and when they announced they would be at Warped Tour, I knew it would be difficult to miss out on seeing them! The show was amazing! I recommend to anyone attending a future Warped Tour 2014 date to put them on your list. I wish their performance could have been longer! They had a signing afterwards. Though I had to wait almost an hour, it was well worth it!
I purchased their first album, Scripted (which you need to listen to if you have not already!), while in line and got it autographed by all three members of the band! 😀 I also purchased a lyric t-shirt.
And then, this happened. Yes. That is me and the lead singer of Icon For Hire, Ariel!
So overall my Vans Warped Tour 2014 experience was amazing! I definitely want to go again next year! To anyone whose tour date is coming up, you have a great Warped Tour to look forward to! I hope this post gave you some useful advice!