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Festival Survival Guide: Pitching Your Tent

Some useful tips for your temporary home

Choose your location wisely - it might be easier to find your tent by a path or hedge, but people are more likely to stumble over it… or worse still piss up against it.
Make sure you can recognise your bit of the site by fixed landmarks (like trees or poles) - you could also try decorating your tent with flags or paint. Do remember that things can look very different at night & when other tents have moved and other people have arrived and set up - it's amazing how your little bit of landscape can change when you're not looking!

Try and pitch your tent on level well drained ground - you don't want to wake up floating in a river when it rains - that just won't be your best wake up call now will it!? - oh and just remember how much it has rained at some festies!

Steer well clear of rivers, streams, ditches lakes, ponds etc - yep they look cool when you arrive and you think how nice it would be to be near a little stream into which you could dangle your poor tired aching feet but - not only could you end up very wet and uncomfortable but they often contain rats and can also carry nasty unpleasant diseases like Leptospirosis! You really wouldn't fancy that...

Try to keep your area of the camp site clean and tidy and always place litter in the bins or in bin bags - yeah we know - sounds just like your Mum having a pop - but at the end of the day you're only borrowing this bit of land for a little while - it will go back to what it was after and it's likely that livestock will live on it - you don't really want to harm them do you? nah come on - no you don't - and you do want the festival to happen again next year .......

I know we've said it before but it's an important point so it will be emphasized in several places in this guide - don't bring anything to a festival that you can't afford to lose, If you do bring valuables either carry them with you or use left luggage or a property lock up if they are provided (lot's of festivals provide these for a small fee)

Split your money into various hiding places when you sleep just in case you're unlucky enough to be burgled in the night.
if you should discover a stranger in or around your tent try not to panic - there are a couple of options - you could pretend to be well asleep in which case hopefully they will take what they can see and go - or you might make a lot of noise and call out for help ( another really good reason for getting to know and getting on with your neighbours) We would advice you not tackle a thief - at the end of the day possessions can be replaced - your well being is paramount - you are not replaceable and you are worth more than a few 'things'.

If the worst happens and you are attacked go to medical, welfare or police straight away - and remember that it's not your fault so go easy on the self blame thing that we all do... the person to blame is the bastard that did it - remember that there are people around who will help you get your head back together in these circumstances. There are some great welfare services around who are experienced, non judgemental and they really do care - don't hesitate - speak to them - you really are not on your own if bad things happen.
Be a bit careful if you wander around alone at night - fortunately assaults really are quite rare - just bear in mind that they do sometimes happen and be just a little aware of where you are and who's around you.

Get to know your neighbours, then you can keep an eye on each others' stuff - after the car park the campsite is the most lucrative area on-site for those who choose to rip others off and tents are easy targets. If there are a few people in your camping party try setting them up in a circle with the entrances facing one another.
Rip off merchants will target obvious hiding places so try and be original, some people do use locks on their tents - this might just give out the message that you have things worth stealing - best to make sure that you don't leave anything of value lying around and just don't take anything with you that you couldn't bear to lose.

If you do see anyone acting suspiciously it's worth reporting it to the security on site - they can't be everywhere at once and we all need to take some responsibility for ourselves and those around us.

Again - remember to keep enough spare cash stashed for emergencies and so that you know you can get home after the festival.

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Written by saad | 28th Aug 2009

Article Info

Festival Survival Guide
Pitching Your Tent
Festival Survival Guide Index
Part 1. The Safeconcerts Festival Survival Guide
Getting the best from your festival experience
Part 2. Preparation
Some important stuff to do before you're ready to go
Part 3. Security and Stewards
On site security and stewards - what you should know
Part 4. On Your Way
What to do en route and on arrival
Part 5. Your Stuff
How best to keep it safe
Part 6. Pitching Your Tent
Some useful tips for your temporary home
Part 7. Your Body
Keep it safe - it's yours and you have choices
Part 8. Keeping Clean
Not easy but perfectly possible
Part 9. Your Clothes
Keep cool, warm and dry and still keep your cred!
Part 10. Drugs and Alcohol
Be wise, be safe, take care
Part 12. Camp Fires
Not a good idea, why?
Part 13. Toilets
Infamous - can you survive them?
Part 14. Children at Festivals
Fun for all the family?
Part 15. Crowd Safety at Festivals
Keeping safe in a dense crowd - crowd surfing and moshing

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