The pros and cons of modern-day music festivals

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From Woodstock to Bonnaroo, Coachella to Veld, the culture of music festivals is constantly evolving. What hasn’t changed is the desire to come together and enjoy music as a community. The satisfaction of connecting with similar people is a driving force behind festivals; not everyone agrees.  

Image may contain: 2 people, outdoorThe Pros

  1. The festival experience is once in a lifetime. You can be exposed to your favourite bands and even learn about new ones. There is a chance to get up close and personal with a band or performer.
  2. Festivals may require you to travel in order to take part. You could benefit from not only the festival but the culture and significance of another country; not to mention it could act as a small vacation.
  3. Festivals allow the opportunity to connect with like-minded people and make new friends. They can help you break out of your comfort zone and explore new relationships.
  4. The music: it’s hard to beat standing in a space with thousands of fans who share the same feelings towards an art form. The artists appreciate this rare circumstance and often create unique set lists and performances.


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The Cons

  1. Image may contain: one or more peopleThe cost of a ticket can be astronomical. Between the festival wristband, accommodations, VIP access, clothes (festival outfits are a must) and possibly a flight, things can add up.
  2. If the festival is in a different country it may add stress and anxiety to your first few days. With travel comes the possibility of a language barrier and culture shock.
  3. Security: festival goers know drinking and drugs are often involved. Not everyone is trustworthy and authentic while under the influence. Be mindful of your belongings and prepare accordingly.
  4. The schedule isn’t forgiving. You may miss one band because another is playing at the same time; you are often forced to choose one artist over the other.


It seems like the cons could overpower the pros, but the more effort you put in the more you’ll get out. Music festivals have the power to be extremely rewarding. What’s your favourite festival and what are some ways to avoid these cons?

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