How to Prepare for the Coachella Festival: 10 Steps

Table of contents:

How to Prepare for the Coachella Festival: 10 Steps
How to Prepare for the Coachella Festival: 10 Steps

Here is a fairly complete guide to prepare to go to the Coachella music and art festival in Indio (California). Once you have arrived at the venue and have a good accommodation booked, you will also need to know what to bring and what to expect from the festival. Above all, get ready to spend three days of fun and intense emotions.


Be Prepared for Coachella Step 1
Be Prepared for Coachella Step 1

Step 1. Get your tickets for the festival

These usually have to be purchased well in advance, as they sell out quickly once they go on sale. Also, keep in mind that they are non-transferable tickets and that a maximum of four are sold for each home. It is not advisable to buy them from a third party.

  • You can buy festival tickets online at Follow the instructions on the page.
  • The festival ticket includes a wristband that allows general access throughout the weekend. You must wear it all the time, even when you are on the bus, in the parking lot or in the camping area (read the following).
  • If you want, you can register the bracelet on the Internet. This option offers several benefits, such as more efficient customer service, social media tools, special promotions and possible updates.
Be Prepared for Coachella Step 2
Be Prepared for Coachella Step 2

Step 2. Purchase all the necessary tickets to make your Coachella experience easier and more enjoyable

Keep in mind that many vehicles will need parking and that you will need an entrance for the parking lot, to leave your car in the camping area or to use the bus, or perhaps for all of these options. There are also tickets to access the campsite and special travel packages are sold. Enter the link to the official website of the festival that has been provided in the previous step.

  • Please note that tickets, promotional stickers and other similar items will be delivered to your home address at your workplace in March, before the festival.
  • Please note that parking is free during the day. It is highly advisable to use a carpool to reduce the number of vehicles and help maintain the sustainability of the festival as much as possible. You can also use the bus.
  • There is also the option of pedestrian access. Check the festival website for more information.
Be Prepared for Coachella Step 3
Be Prepared for Coachella Step 3

Step 3. Plan your accommodation

On the website you will find camping options such as camping with a car, camping with a tent, camping places at Lake El Dorado and the rental of safari-type tents. There are also many hotels, motels, vacation rentals and other camping areas close to the festival site.

There are also different ways of traveling to get to the festival (by car, by plane, by bus). The closest airport is Bermuda Dunes, which is 15 minutes from the gate. Van Nuys Airlines ( offers a charter flight every hour. Another alternative is the Palm Springs Airport, or take a bus from Los Angeles International Airport, which takes an hour and a half to get to the festival site

Be Prepared for Coachella Step 4
Be Prepared for Coachella Step 4

Step 4. Prepare for the heat and to be comfortable

This is California, and even at this time of year, it will be quite hot and sunny, so bring a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen.

  • If you have a medium-sized hiking backpack, about 50 x 40 x 20 cm (20 x 15 x 9 inches) once packed, take it with you. It is not allowed to bring food or water, but you can bring an empty non-metallic bottle to fill it with water in the fountains of the enclosure. You will be hot throughout the day, and the most basic thing you will need, but what you will not want to pay for is water.
  • Bring your normal hiking equipment. You will spend about 12 hours a day standing and walking around the venue (the festival usually starts at 11:00 and ends around 00:30). It is advisable that you carry in your backpack: a hat, sunglasses, sunscreen, lip balm, insect repellent, medicines that you may need, a small towel or wet wipes in case you get stained or want to refresh yourself, and anything you think that you may need. Always have a waterproof poncho or raincoat on hand, just in case it rains. Check the weather forecast for the days of the festival on the Internet.
  • Strollers for babies and young children are allowed.
  • Bring your dancing shoes. They are allowed and are totally necessary.
  • While it's tempting to dress up in eccentric clothing and accessories (glitter trim, tight dresses, skinny jeans, leather clothing, heels, etc.), you'll end up regretting it if you do. Anyone who has been to such a festival before will agree that a T-shirt, shorts and sneakers are the best choice to relax and enjoy the sights and music to the fullest.
  • Find out about what you can and cannot take. There is a very extensive list here: In particular, you may be surprised to find that you are not allowed to bring food, water, blankets, hydration packs, instruments, chairs, markers or pens, professional video cameras or photographs. However, it is allowed to take photos and videos with an iPhone, an Android cell phone or another similar device. It will not surprise you that access with weapons, chains, pets, drugs or fireworks is prohibited. They also do not allow umbrellas to be brought into the venue because they prevent you from seeing the stage.
  • There are many awnings under which you can protect yourself from the sun by squeezing in with other attendees.
Be Prepared for Coachella Step 5
Be Prepared for Coachella Step 5

Step 5. Find out about the schedule and the stage in which each band performs before going to the festival

It is important to know where and when each performance will take place so as not to miss the bands that interest you the most.

  • There are so many good bands that you will have to make more than one difficult decision that your friends will probably disagree with, so plan ahead to find out who will see which shows (and follow the advice in the next step).
  • The festival map is available on the Internet from a few days before the event. Keep in mind that the poster is subject to change, so prepare an alternative plan just in case.
Be Prepared for Coachella Step 6
Be Prepared for Coachella Step 6

Step 6. Coachella has an official app (search for "Coachella" in the app store)

This application is essential to know where and when each band performs. Download it and check it frequently. You will not regret.

Be Prepared for Coachella Step 7
Be Prepared for Coachella Step 7

Step 7. Establish, together with your festival companions, an emergency contact and some basic rules to meet at a meeting point

It is very likely that at some point during the festival they will separate. Before going, choose several meeting points with your friends (use the map to clearly mark them) and bring all your cell phones to be able to communicate by messages.

  • It is advisable to establish meeting points and times as a precaution, not only to go if someone is lost. In this way, they will be able to exchange impressions, modify plans if necessary, and check that everyone is well throughout the festival.
  • Walkie-talkies are allowed. You can use these devices to keep in touch with your colleagues.
Be Prepared for Coachella Step 8
Be Prepared for Coachella Step 8

Step 8. Eat well before entering the venue

Eat a hearty and complete breakfast to have energy for much of the day. Food is sold at the festival, but at very high prices and at stalls that normally form ridiculously long lines.

  • Although it is not allowed to bring food into the enclosure, you may be able to hide a few cereal bars or energy bars, dried fruit rolls or gummies in your backpack, but keep in mind that if they search you and find any food, they will take it away immediately.
  • If you have to eat special foods at certain times of the day due to a medical problem, such as diabetes or another disease diagnosed by a doctor, get a certificate from your doctor and show it to the security personnel in the queue to enter the venue. The festival staff will help you keep your medication and food in a safe place reserved for diabetics. Any medication that requires a prescription must be prescribed in your name, corresponding to the data on your personal identification document.
  • Yes, they sell vegetarian and vegan food at Coachella.
Be Prepared for Coachella Step 9
Be Prepared for Coachella Step 9

Step 9. Be on time

The entrance to the enclosure opens at 11:00 for those who want to take advantage of the whole day. Organize to be there much earlier if you want to get in fast. To enter later, try to be there several hours before the concerts you want to see start so that you can park, queue, find a good place, etc.

Be Prepared for Coachella Step 10
Be Prepared for Coachella Step 10

Step 10. Enjoy Coachella

Although there are many things to prepare before arriving, it is worth getting well informed and organizing everything in advance to enjoy the experience to the fullest. You will meet many other people who follow the same bands as you, you will soak up new experiences and you will come back loaded with memories for a lifetime. And who knows? Maybe you meet a famous person.

Collaborate to make the event more sustainable. Coachella boasts of being a sustainable festival and hopes that its attendees will respect and take the message seriously. For starters, carpool by using cars that read "Carpoolchella" on the outside, or by taking the bus. Bring a non-metallic bottle that you can fill for free at the festival fountains. Look for the vegan food stalls. And foster a love of music and spending your time with lots of wonderful human beings


  • If you go to the festival from outside the United States, Canada or Mexico, you will have to pick up your ticket at Will Call, a place near the festival, but outside the venue.
  • The festival is suitable for all ages. Children up to five years old can enter for free. Whether or not you like the idea of strolling with your kids among crowds of rowdy teens and adults is another matter.
  • Rain or shine, the festival will keep its schedule. Go prepared.
  • You can withdraw money from an ATM inside the festival.
  • You cannot bring water guns or sprayers, but sprayers are sometimes sold inside the enclosure.
  • Tickets are not sold at the event itself. Buy the tickets you need before attending.
  • If you need to use lockers, there are a few available, but not many.
  • If you are worried about losing contact with your friends or simply do not want to waste time locating them, you should download Life360 or another similar application on your cell phone.


  • Take care of the bracelet as if it were money. Think of it this way: if it's lost, stolen, or broken, it's irreplaceable.
  • Beware of typical college fraternity members and drugged hippies. Sometimes these kinds of people go to Coachella too.
  • Pamphlets should not be distributed within the enclosure or at the entrance. This festival avoids the use of paper to respect the life of the trees.
  • The use of glass containers is also prohibited. If someone arrives with wine and beer in glass bottles, and sauce jars for breakfast on Sunday morning in the tent, the security personnel will ask you to dispose of them before entering the compound, which means that you have to throw it away or drink it in one gulp.
  • You are not allowed to stay in the parking lot drinking alcohol.
  • You cannot take the bracelet off and lend it to a friend. Festival staff should look closely at the wristbands to detect those that appear loose enough to be able to slide their hand out. If they see that this is the case with your bracelet, they will not allow you to access the concerts and will require you to buy a replacement with an additional surcharge. The same is applicable to the case of damaged bracelets or that from the beginning have been placed too loose. All the tricks are known.
  • Prepare to be registered at the entrance. The festival has the right to require this procedure from anyone before allowing them access to the venue.

Popular by topic