Fairies meets fantasy cosplay with this groups of cheerful festival goers at Bluesfest.
Fairies meets fantasy cosplay with this groups of cheerful festival goers at Bluesfest. Alison Paterson

Guide: What to take and what to leave at home for Bluesfest

FACING the dilemma of what to bring to Bluesfest?

The tents are up, the volunteers and staff are getting ready, but now it's your turn to get ready.

We asked the festival's brand new Chief Operations Office Steve Romer for tips on how to make sure your Bluesfest experience is the best possible one.

Here are his tips:

1. Come prepared: It may sound like an obvious tip but better to be safe than sorry, right? Mr Romer said to ensure your basic check-list is:

  • Tickets (printed or e-ticket)
  • Photo ID
  • Credit or debit card - all bars at the festival will have 'tap-and-go' facilities for the first time (no more drink tickets!)
  • Enough cash if you are not bringing any cards

2. Be ready for all four seasons: Take a hat, sunscreen cream, mosquito repellent and something warm to wear at night or/and if it rains.

Wet weather meant people needed to use rain gear to stay dry this year at Bluesfest in Tyagarah. Photo Marc Stapelberg / The Northern Star
Wet weather meant people needed to use rain gear to stay dry this year at Bluesfest in Tyagarah. Photo Marc Stapelberg / The Northern Star Marc Stapelberg

3. What to leave at home: Alcohol, illicit substances, you will not be allowed in with unsealed bottles or glass, and you will not be allowed in with umbrellas either. Also leave your pets and animals at home.

4. Backpacks are allowed, but be prepared to have it searched: All large backpacks and bags will be "stringently checked” at the gates according to Mr Romer upon arrival.

Asked if backpacks are banned, Mr Romer said "not this year, they are not, but we are going to be doing very stringent checks, so people need to make sure people arrive early, but the preference is that they travel light.”

Even bumbags will be searched.

All fold up chairs will be required to be taken out of their covers when entering the gates.

Punters go through a bag security check at the gates of the Byron Bay Bluesfest 2016. Photo Marc Stapelberg / The Northern Star
Punters go through a bag security check at the gates of the Byron Bay Bluesfest 2016. Photo Marc Stapelberg / The Northern Star Marc Stapelberg

All prams and trolleys will also be searched, so owners will need to be ready to have them totally emptied at the entry point.

Bluesfest will only allow small eskys or coolers but only for people who have children under 4 years of age with them.

5. Download the app: Get the free Bluesfest app on your phone, select the bands you are gong to see every day, and plan ahead.

6. Catch the bus, visit the locals: Bearing in mind that mornings are free, Mr Roamer invited Bluesfest punters to "take advantage of the buses, get yourself down to Byron or South Tweed and enjoy yourself in the morning to enjoy the music in the afternoon and the evening.”

7. If in need, ask for help: If you need any kind of assistance, or any query, find the nearest sign post inside the festival venue and you will find the emergency numbers to call or text. The festival's communications team will be able to be your first point of contact.



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