Festival personal safety guide

Festivals are full of fun-loving people who want to have a good time. But they can also be targets for thieves and opportunists.

The most common crime is theft from (or of) tents. But assault, including sexual assault, is not uncommon.

Read this list of commonsense safety tips provided by experienced festival organisers to help you have a relaxed and crime-free festival.

Be safe

  • Don't bring valuables. Although, most festivals have locker facilities if you have anything of value with you.
  • Stay in groups and be tolerant of people slowing you down. Just enjoy going with the flow.
  • Festivals are busy places so don't be irritated by being pushed or someone stepping on your toes.
  • Don't leave your drink unattended. Even soft drinks can be spiked.
  • Remember, alcohol or drugs can affect your ability to make safe judgements.
  • Check your mobile is charged on a daily basis. Most big festivals have onsite recharging facilities.
  • If you have any concerns about your safety in the campsites, find a plot somewhere well-lit. Go near a fire tower or by your zone manager's caravan.
  • Introduce yourself to campsite staff, show them where your tent is, and stick a distinctive flag on it so that they can see it easily. Ask them to keep an eye out.
  • Make friends with your neighbours. It's nice to meet new people, and you can keep an eye on each other's tents. But keep in mind that they're strangers, so don't trust them with anything valuable.
  • At night, stay on the main roads in the campsites. Don't go exploring darker, quieter areas – you can do your exploring in the day.
  • Organise a meeting point with your friends where you will be three times a day (e.g. 2pm, 6pm and 1am) in case you get split up.

Your valuables

  • Don't leave anything valuable in your car. Leave your glove compartment empty and open. Check on it during the festival.
  • Split your cash and cards into two stashes so that if one lot is lost or stolen, you have some back-up money.
  • Don't leave any valuables inside your tent when you go to see a band. Store your valuables well at night in separate stashes.
  • Don't bury your valuables by your tent as someone may be watching.
  • Mark your property and your tent with your name and postcode. This will significantly reduce the risk of things being stolen.
  • To make life harder for thieves, leave your tent untidy so that there is no obvious bag to grab quickly.
  • Bring only the cash cards you need. Make a note of your bank's emergency number to call if your cards are stolen.
  • If you need medicines with you onsite, keep them with you or keep them secure in the lockers.

Page last reviewed: 04/06/2015

Next review due: 04/06/2017

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Festival health

Everything you need to know to stay safe and enjoy yourself if you're heading to a festival this summer