Coachella First Timers

This is for you, Coachella first timers, or Coachella Music Festival virgins if you will, that have never been to the event before. Let me preface it, by saying that Coachella is a magical place where, fairies sprinkle magic powder and... wait that's Burning Man... Just kidding (if you're all about Burning Man). Anyways, I've included some tips on what you need to know about attending the annual west coast music event.

I am not much of an avid camper and I have not camped out at Coachella, and probably wont, but I've heard they have a pretty good water recycling system and good showers, for a campground. Camping tickets are $75 for the entire weekend. The best thing about camping at Coachella, is that you are there, at Coachella. Thus, no walking far, or getting stuck in traffic (more on that later). You can find more info here at Coachella Camping.

Camping @ Lake Eldorado
New for 2011, if you have a $1000, you can get a 2 person tent or a 2 person Teepee with 2 cots and sleeping bags, along Lake Eldorado. Click here for more info.

If I'm already spending that much for camping I'd rather save up some more, and dish out for this next camping item below...

Luxury Camping
Yes, now they have camping for people that aren't campers, called the Safari Tents. Well, that is if you're willing to spend $5000 for an air-conditioned tent, with a private bathroom (nice), queen sized bed, electrical outlets, and more (if I had the money)... More info and pictures Click here.

If you're not a camper, then I guess your most comfortable bet is to find a hotel in the area. Palm Springs has many resorts and hotels, so that would be your closest bet. Hotels. However, if you haven't booked your rooms yet, you better get on it as many of them sell out quickly. What sucks now is that ever since a few years ago, the hotels in the area have caught on to the Coachella consumerism and consequently jacked up their rates that weekend. So be prepared for some stiff prices, even at 3 star hotels.

Traffic Lets face it... it sucks. Unless you get there really early, like from noon to 2 pm, otherwise be prepared to be sitting a while in the car. Coachella has stated that most of the people who arrive there, arrive between 3 pm to 7 pm (ideally the best time to see the sunset over the valley and when the good bands start playing). So if you can avoid that, the less stressed you will be. However, if you do decide to enter during that time, make sure you have enough gas because it takes almost an hour or more just to get through that last mile.

The traffic system for 2011 has gotten better, though. Perhaps, because more people are camping.

Coachella has a carpool program conveniently called carpoolchella where if you carpool with 4 or more people you could win VIP tickets for life. Click here for more info.

Parking Unless you get there early, you will probably be parking far away. So be ready to walk alot, also. Well you should be anyway, since that's all you will be doing once you enter the event. The plus side, is that parking is free. Ooooh! How nice of them.

PassesJust make sure you don't forget it because that would totally suck.  And that "will call" line is usually really long, even longer than the line to get in to Coachella.

I don't ever remember a time when it rained at Coachella, but check the weekend's forecast just in case. The Southern California desert is usually dry and hot in April, and so you should bring sunblock and drink lots of water. The temperature usually waves around 90 to 100 degrees and it is not uncommon to see triple digit temperatures.

The people are usually fine. However, with tens of thousands of people attending, there are always bad apples. For the most part though, people are just there for the music and to have fun.

Bands Seeing your favorite bands takes a lot of walking and commitment. If you are a hardcore fan, and your favorite artist is someone like Prince or Radiohead, then you will probably park yourself in front of the mainstage the entire day, and miss the rest that Coachella has to offer (if you want to be up close that is). As for the rest of us, you just make your list and catch a few songs of so and so, then head on over to the next artist.

Yes, there is going to be a bunch of traffic when you leave. It usually isn't as bad as it was when entering. However, the worst time to leave is when the main headliner of the night is just about to wrap up. That is when almost everyone is gonna leave; it is like forcing thousands of people through a funnel, as there is only one exit (I hope they do something about that). So if you can stand to leave a little bit earlier then the better off you are. Or if you don't mind waiting around a bit.

Well, hopefully this gives you an idea of what to expect at Coachella, and hopefully I'll see you there.

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1 comment:

Unknown said...

Thank you! This was very useful. I am thinking of going in 2010.