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Reading Festival Survival Guide

Festivals are essentially a whole weekend of extremely suspect hygiene splashed with a tonne of glitter and awesome music. Not only will you have the time of your life throughout this whole experience, but you will also learn some very useful, basic skills on surviving with the bare minimum. Here at The Spark* we have compiled your very own list of those essentials which can help you settle right into festival life.

Nokia (Brick) Phone

Remember the chunky Nokia 3310 phones from back in the day? The original brick phone which possessed the most riveting game in the world that goes by the name ‘Snake’. Well that is the biggest Reading Festival must-have. You may think that having your smartphone taken away from you is the end of the world, but at Reading Festival you will be so distracted by everything happening around you that you will forget what Snapchat even is.

So, you may be thinking, why is a Nokia 3310 ‘brick’ phone an essential item? Why not a smartphone which is essentially just made out of glass? Well here we may have just answered your question… Glass is extremely vulnerable whereas a 3310 can be thrown off of the Eiffel Tower and get away with a small bruise. It is certainly a good idea to make this cheap purchase.

Also, if you lose it will you really mind? It is not like it is full of all of your pictures and memories. The only thing you may be a bit gutted about losing is your high score on ‘Snake.’

It goes without mentioning that the battery life on a Nokia is also guaranteed to last you all weekend, which is definitely handy when it comes to meeting up with your friends and staying safe.

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Glitter is certainly all the rage at the moment. This is not just because it looks very pretty and stylish, it has one other major perk for girls. If you cover a lot of your face in glitter, there is no need to worry about make up – ta-dah! Also, it covers up every trace of being extremely tired. Definitely worth investing in.

Toilet Roll/Baby Wipes

It is a very good idea to take heaps and heaps of toilet roll. Even though the toilets on site are occasionally maintained, it is never a guarantee that there will be toilet paper. It also feels a little more hygienic to bring your own.

Then there is the shower situation… Some people are determined they need to shower everyday and make the dreaded visit to the site’s communal showers. These are the sort of people we should certainly applaud – the brave souls.  It is very recommended to take a large, family pack of baby wipes with you and wipe yourself down once or twice a day. These baby wipes are also very useful to give your wellies an evening wipe so they are all set for the next day.

Dry Hair Shampoo

This glorified talcum powder is an absolute saviour for hair, whether you’re male or female. A couple of sprays and you immediately have clean looking hair, along with a lot more body and thickness. Obviously there is the option to wash your hair in the showers but then you find yourself short of a hairdryer etc, so dry hair shampoo really is recommended.

If you have long hair, the best hairstyle is a French plait (preferably two). These tight braids which come right down your head are not only extremely stylish but will also completely hide any sign of grease. If you are able to do them tight enough they will last you all weekend and are extremely comfy to sleep on. This means you can go along to Reading Festival without the worry of having to sort your hair out everyday.


When you are constantly on the go and have such an amazing array of entertainment it is extremely easy to forget about food or find the time to eat a proper meal. This is why it is such a good idea to bring fast filling snacks, such as cereal bars or bags of crisps. This will save any rumbling tummies or passing out in crowds from a lack of sugar.

Also, it is a good idea to remind people you are attending Reading Festival with to bring snacks too or you will most probably find everyone stealing yours.

If you need a snack refill, there is plenty of choice on the site or in the local Tesco.

Small torch

Reading Festival parties right the way into the night so a helping hand of a torch is very useful. Whether this is used to find your way back to your tent, to find things deep in your bag or to look around your tent at night – trust in the fact it will be very helpful.


Other essentials:
  • ID
  • Jumper
  • Sun lotion
  • Waterproof jacket or poncho
  • Tent
  • Sleeping bag
  • Roll mat
  • Contraceptives
  • Toiletries
  • Ear plugs

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