Coachella is one of the biggest music festivals in the U.S. and it's back this April 13 to 15 and 20 to 22. During that time, thousands of people will descend on the Indio Valley in southern California to soak up the sun, listen to music, and cover themselves in body paint, feathers and fringe.
And all that fun is costly. Tickets are sold out, so your only option now is to buy resale. But the tickets are only part of the expense — there's still transportation, meals, lodging, essentials (sunblock is a must) and spontanious purchases.
Whether you're headed to Coachella to see Eminem, Beyoncé, French Montana or someone else, here are six hacks to help you be financially savvy when planning your desert music festival experience this year.
1. Travel insurance
Coachella is an expensive weekend. And if for any reason you can’t make it down there (weather problems, getting sick), you could lose all your money. Or you can buy travel insurance. Yes, it’s an added expense, but it’s also a good way to ensure that you won’t lose your money if you get sick and can’t attend. Or, if Coachella cancels or doesn’t deliver in some way, you can file with your insurer to get your money back. You can easily compare travel insurance quotes right here on Policygenius.
2. Choose wisely
There are a lot of different options when it comes to your Coachella experience. If you're trying to be smart with your money, figure out where your priorities lie.
For example, is it extremely important to you get the glamping pass to stay at Lake Eldorado (we're talking thousands of dollars, here) or could you do with a less expensive Airbnb option? Perhaps you're comfortable having sandwiches and pizza instead of spending $225 on the VIP Rose Garden dinner. Whatever it is, it's important to know your priorities ahead of time.
Getting to Coachella is sort of a nightmare. It’s you and thousands of other people stuck on the same highway. Carpooling is a way to save some money, time and your sanity. Split the cost and have company on the road to the festival.
Coachella does offer a shuttle for $70 to $75 from a few different locations including the Los Angeles airport. This is another great option to save money on your transportation.
4. Stock up beforehand
The festival doesn’t allow outside food and beverage, but you can bring a hydration pack or an empty water bottle. So save on bottled water by bringing an empty one to fill up at water stations. Hang onto that bottle for the weekend and you can easily save yourself a ton of cash.
The same goes for snacks. If you’re staying outside the festival grounds, eat before going in. If you’re camping, you can cook at the campsite before heading in.
5. Utilize social media
Liking Coachella’s page on Facebook or following their Instagram account is a great way to connect with other fans - fans who might be looking to sell a ticket they can no longer use (and at a discounted price). Often times, companies release information or deals to their social media followers that aren’t always released on their site. Following their accounts is a way to stay in the know and possibly save some money.
6. Use rewards
Have some airline miles or credit card rewards stacked up? Cash them in to help you save on your travel or lodging.