First time Leeds fest hacks

*This post includes a gifted experience but all words and opinions are my own*

Ok, before I get into this post, I CANNY believe it’s been one whole week since Leeds festival, one whole week of glorious weather [finally], glorious music and of course glorious company. I’m currently super sick in bed so I thought to cheer myself up, I’d crack on with writing my Leeds fest 2019 round up and do some reminiscing of a pretty good weekend.

I know there’s a bunch of you out there that get so freaking excited about Autumn and pumpkin flavoured things and halloween and stuff around mid August. That’s fine, we like what we like BUT I can’t even start to think about the changing season until I’ve been to Leeds festival. Summer is my most favourite time ever ever ever. I always have THE BEST SUMMERS EVER *insert pop punk song here* and Leeds fest just kinda is the icing on the cake of another bloody great one and marks the end of summer for me.

So, I’ve been going to Leeds fest since 2007. I didn’t even know it was a thing until my friend at college told me about it and I begged my mum to buy me a ticket. After much persuasion, she caved and got me the ticket - a whole five months before the event itself. I had no idea what to expect, I kinda was low key terrified about not showering and not getting enough sleep [been an old women since my early teens] but after my first weekend at Leeds, it soon became my most favourite time of year and my happy place. Twelve years after my first Leeds fest, I’d like to consider myself a well seasoned festival goer and have picked up some festival hacks along the way. I feel like going to your first festival as a teen is almost a right of passage and everyone should experience one.

If you’re camping for the whole weekend

9 times out of 10, if we were camping we would pay for an early bird ticket. This was basically to make sure we got a decent camping spot as there would usually be around 10+ of us camping together at least. There's nothing worse than a mad scramble trying to get a camping spot with all your pals. I was kinda extra when I used to camp, I would take a blow up bed, 2 duvets, a sheet, pillows and a sleeping bag. I wanted to make sure I was comfy on an eve and it gets bloody cold on a night so all the extra layers meant I kept toasty warm.

Every festival I have attended and slept it rained, shock. So I’d always take bin bags to put my stuff in to keep dry and make sure nothing was touching the sides of the tent otherwise you’d be in for a very soggy weekend!

What to pack

So we all know the UK weather is pretty unpredictable right? So my advice for what to pack is literally keep checking the weather forecast and pack for every eventuality. Important things to pack but not limited to;

  • Wellies
  • Hand sanitiser
  • toilet roll
  • sacks
  • water bottles
  • SUN CREAM X 100000
  • A brolly
  • Water proofs
  • Cosy PJ’s 
  • a warm layer
  • a camping chair 
  • dry shampoo / talc 
  • Wet wipes or if you want to be more eco, flannels and soap
  • A million pairs of socks - no one likes wet feet
  • bin bags - clean up after yourselves 
  • Bum bag / bag no bigger then A4 for the arena 
  • Pain killers
  • More layers
Basically guys, you wanna be covered for every weather eventually but also pack smart and don’t over do it. You’ll be the one lugging around this stuff to your site. And for the love of God, clean up after yourselves and take your shit home. It’s so important to respect the space you’re staying in.


Aside from bringing in your own food, I hate to say it but the food at the festival isn’t that great if you’re a Veggie and especially Vegan. This year I was really disappointed with the lack of options, especially in comparison to other festivals I’ve been to in the past so its worth bearing that in mind. Theres things like pizza, chips, falafel wraps and noodles but a few days in, I was sick of eating beige. The food is literally the only bug bear I have! We did spot one vegan van but most options had sold out on the first day and there were some places you could get the pizza vegan, but I felt the choice for a 5 day festival [for some] lacking. Festival food isn’t cheap either so make sure you have a budget for it. 

Getting to the festival

This year I didn’t camp, I haven’t since my early 20’s because I’m old and like my own bed lol. There are a bunch of ways to get to and from the festivals. Shuttles from the centre of Leeds, you can get daily tickets or buy returns on the First bus app for the whole weekend. This is what we did and they cost £26 for 6 trips. You can also drive as there's plenty of parking BUT be prepared for queues to leave if you’re going at peak times. You can also get dropped off by Taxis and Ubers too!

Everything else

On the site there’s a co op so if you didn’t want to buy any of the food from the trucks thats always an option and there are also shuttles to Tesco off camp where you can stock up on what you need. There are also medical vans where you can buy painkillers, first aid supplies and sun cream etc. Inside the main arena there are water taps [also in camp too] so you can fill up your bottles and stay hydrated through the day - super important if you’ve been drinking + it’s hot. Something I noticed this year was that each part of the campsite had a Samaritans hub you could go to if you were feeling anxious or overindulged. A safe space to go to get help which I thought was really great.

The highlights for me this year was:

  • The weather OMG I’ve never been to an actual hot Leeds fest before!
  • Screaming along to ADTR
  • Not having to wear wellies lol
  • Meeting Bexey - serious sweet heart
  • Hanging out with pals, in a field with good music and a few drinks
  • Getting back to my flat before 10.30pm lol [told you I’m old]
  • Also seeing Pvris and Pale Waves - both excellent bands 
Obviously, the most important thing is to keep safe, look after your friends and other festival goers and have fun. Leeds festival weekend is one of the most magic experiences you’ll have in summer.


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