Big Day Out: Top ten survival tips

By Joanna Hunkin

Top Ten Survival Tips

After receiving dozens of emails from our readers with their top Big Day Out survival tips, we've chosen the best and compiled this handy list of sage advice to help you survive the mammoth day.

1. Sunscreen. Coat yourself once with 30+ waterproof sunscreen before you leave the house, plus take a small bottle to re-apply throughout the day. An additional tip is to keep your sunscreen in a zip-lock bag in case it comes undone during the hustle and bustle of the day.

2. Don't take expensive sunnies. Even if you don't lose them, you're bound to drop them at least once. Pick up a pair of cheap knock-offs at your local service station/chemist/$2 Shop.

3. Take a small, sealed Pump bottle and refill from the multiple water stations throughout the day. A big bottle will only weigh you down, plus the water is always warm by the end of the bottle. Yuk! Reader Clare Jeffers recommends freezing a bottle of water the night beforehand, to ensure maximum refreshment.

4. Plan your day. Print out a schedule and map right now and figure out what you want to see and where it is. It doesn't matter if you don't stick to the plan, at least you'll have a rough idea of what's happening and where you're heading.

5. Meeting points. Every year you're told and every year, thousands of people don't listen. Cell phone networks do not work properly at the Big Day Out. Text messages get delayed, phone calls don't connect - and even if they do, you can't hear anything above the roar of the crowd. Arrange a specific meeting point with your friends before you set out.

6. Travel light. Big bulky backpacks will weigh you down and annoy everyone else in the crowd. The MetService is predicting warm, mild weather, continuing into the evening so don't worry about hauling jumpers and jackets around. Remember, the more you take, the more you have to lose.

7. Wear comfortable shoes. If you're planning on getting in amongst it, don't wear jandals. Not only will your feet get crushed, you'll spend the next three weeks trying to get them clean again. Gross. Ladies - heels are completely inappropriate footwear and people will openly mock you. Don't do it.

8. Don't wear white or your favourite outfit. Tempting though it is to wear your favourite top to the fest, there will be tears before bed time when you get home and realise it's ripped/has ciggie burns in it/gum stuck to it/is sodden with sweat and grime that not even Napisan can save.

9. Tie your hair up. This is as much courtesy as survival. There is nothing worse than being in a mosh and getting a mouth full of hair. Angry punters have been known to pull offenders hair and worse. If you value your long locks, tie them up.

10. Keep your cash safe. If you have zippable pockets, great. Otherwise find somewhere on your person to stash your cash. Though there are Eftpos machines available, the queues are always horrendous. Make sure you have enough money to buy water and snacks - and find your way home. Buses back to Auckland City are $5 so make sure you keep a little cash for the end of the night.

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