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Official Fly Guide to Manage Coachella in 2018

DID THE COACHELLA PRESALES GO ON SALE YET?! I hope you read that in your most DJ Khaled voice. Today, Coachella 2018 presale tickets go on sale! #Coachella 2018 is considered one of the top music festivals in the world. From the music to the vibes, this is an event that will create lifelong memories for you and your closest friends. Coachella is conducted over two weekends in April and each weekend has its own flair. This past April, I had the pleasure of being an attendee and it was an experience of a lifetime. There were highs and there were lows, but overall it was an experience that I will carry with me forever.  Like most people after a trip, I came back saying the age old adage, “ If I knew then what I knew now, I would have done (insert action).” If I am lucky enough to go again (BeyChella 2018 *COUGH*), I told myself I would be even more prepared than ever! But what good is it to keep these gems to myself?! This is the OFFICIAL Fly Guide to Coachella 2018 . I will share all my tips, tricks, and advice to making this the best trip of your life!

 

The Required Necessities

Before you can go to Coachella, you need a ticket! I highly recommend looking up when tickets go on sale in your time zone and be waiting at the computer, or by your phone, 30 minutes before tickets go on sale. You cannot hop in the purchasing queue early, but give yourself time before and during the ticket buying process to secure the bag…. By bag I mean ticket of course. I was in the ticket purchasing queue for about an hour before I was confirmed to have a ticket. But the good news is, if you get in line online, the more likely you are to get a ticket. Now let’s talk about the various tickets you can get.

There are 3 TYPES OF TICKETS you can purchase:

  • General Admission: $429
    • This ticket will give you full access to the event. However, you are responsible for your transportation to get to and from the venue. Coachella is in the middle of the desert and parking each weekend is crazy. Keep that in mind with this ticket. Unless you are camping on site, issa no for me dawg. However, if you end up deciding to get a shuttle pass separate from the ticket, you can do so also. But why do that, when you can get the next option I’m about to discuss.
  • General Admission With Shuttle Pass: $504
    • This ticket is the best bang for your buck if you are not looking for VIP. This ticket will give you access to the event AND will shuttle you to and from the festival. They have several hotels that have shuttle pickup locations. You can book a hotel nearby one, or stay at a shuttle stop hosted hotel. This means you can turn up responsibly and have a ride throughout the duration of the event. They have tons of buses, “miss one next 15 one coming!” (If you caught that, yous an OG!)
  • VIP: $999
    • If you got the bread, spring for this ticket! You get exclusive access to VIP seating areas for key concerts. You also get access to more restrooms, food and beverage tents, shaded areas (remember you are in the desert), and VIP day parking. This is the Bentley Truck of Coachella passes. Let’s not forget, sometimes celebrities like to “blend in” the VIP areas. There are a limited number of VIP tickets, so when you are VIP you won’t be in the mosh pit of Coachella fans during a show. So who knows, you can be turning up next to Jay Z next year.

I personally had a General Admission with Shuttle Pass this year. I loved being able to have a ride to and from the event. If I would have drove, I would have spent more time and money trying to park. Don’t even think of ubering to Coachella! The cost of a ride is ALWAYS in the surge state, so you could be paying the upwards of a $100 dollars just to go one way! However, once you get closer to Palm Springs, the rates get back to normal. If I were to do it again, I would go the VIP ticket route! If you hop in the presale line early enough, you can set up a payment plan! Also, if you have an American Express, purchase your ticket with that! I received an awesome Coachella kit from them that included a powerbank and other cute knick knacks to get me through the weekend. Speaking of powerbanks,  POWERBANKS ARE YOUR FRIEND! I kept three in rotation every day since you never really leave the site once you get there. I will explain more about that later.

Here is the link to how to purchase tickets: https://www.coachella.com/guidebook/how-to-purchase/

 

Where do I stay?!

When I was looking for places to stay at Coachella, I was so confused! Let me clarify, COACHELLA IS IN INDIO, CALIFORNIA! When I was booking places to stay, I was given every suburb surrounding the festival entrance. The main city people stay in for Coachella (and where most shuttle pickup stops were) is Palm Springs. You can stay at a Coachella host hotel which will have the shuttle pick up right outside your door, or you can find a nearby hotel and Uber to the shuttle pickup. However, if you do get an AirBnB close to the Coachella gates, you can easily rent a car and get to the gates faster, but again, parking is a struggle.

Keep in mind, Palm Springs is not LA. You aren’t about be staying at the Ritz Carlton. There are a lot of standard hotels in the town. My best friend (Hey GIRL!) and I stayed at the Musicland Hotel. It was a $6 dollar Uber ride to the Renaissance Palms Springs, where the shuttle pick up was, as well as, a few of our friends. This is a cost effective option as the host hotels tend to have higher rates do to convenience and the amenities provided. DO NOT WAIT UNTIL THE LAST MINUTE TO FIND A HOTEL! These hotels book up fast, and AirBnBs book even faster. The earlier you book the better. I booked 3 weeks until the event and got lucky! I recommend going through Hotels.com , or similar sites like that to find the best rates. You can also stack promo codes. Students, I recommend getting a Unidays account as you can get exclusive promo codes for booking hotels.

Here is a link to the host hotels: https://www.coachella.com/guidebook/where-to-stay/

 

Flights!

Okay, so flights were another confusing factor as well. Do I fly into LAX, or Palms Springs Municipal Airport? The answer is either. Keep in mind LA and Palm Springs are not close! However, if you fly into LAX, you have an option of getting a rental car to drive to Coachella. This will make for a cool road trip and will allow you to pick up some necessities in LA before you head into Palm Springs. Flying into LAX is the cheaper option and getting a rental is not that bad when you are splitting the cost among friends. Palms Springs Municipal Airport is the only airport in Palm Springs, but you can choose this option and fly directly into the city. PLEASE NOTE, if you choose the Palm Springs Municipal Airport option, Uber does not pick you up at the front doors of the airport. I know! That sounds really weird right?  Apparently, there is some rule that says Uber cannot go on the airport grounds. But all you need to do is walk about 800 feet off the property and wait for your Uber on the corner, PAUSE. No, but seriously, go across the street and there is a well-lit courthouse that many taxis and Ubers frequent to pick up travelers. I personally flew into Palm Springs because I am not a fan of road trips. Plus everywhere in Palm Springs is a $5- 10 Uber ride, so a car wasn’t essential.

Things You Should Know

Now that we got through some key housekeeping tips, I will rundown a list of things you ought to keep in mind when at Coachella. These are the things that I wish I knew, wish I did more of, or wish I was prepared to experience. Take what you will from this section as this is from MY PERSPECTIVE!

  1. CHECK YOUR ATTITUDE AT THE DOOR!
    • Coachella is not a seated ticketing event. This is an event that brings out free spirits from all over the world! You are literally in a pit of fans singing at the top of their lungs, hopping up and down, and are under the influence most of the time. Do not take things so seriously if you are bumped, or if you don’t get the best view of the stage. You are blessed enough to afford a ticket to an event that sells out every year! Turn up!
  2. BE AS FLY AS YOU WANNA BE BUT….
    • Ladies, this is more for you than the fellas. When putting together outfits for Coachella, keep in mind you are literally going to be walking miles a day. That means, you can’t be like Rihanna and them and wear heels! You can get away with booties, but I recommend comfort soles be inserted. Wear what makes you happy, but remember, you are in the desert. The less clothes the better. Coachella is not a conservative event. Don’t be afraid to wear a bralette and shorts. Be freeeeee! People are literally taking naps in the middle of the grass. This the land of the free and the home of the eccentric. Embrace it and hashtag your fly fits! I was featured on BooHoo for my look for the weekend along with my best friend. Fellas, leave the Yeezy’s at home and bust out a pair of those Team Jordan’s, or Chuck Taylor’s. This event is not fly kick friendly and not a place for icy white sneakers.
  3. POWERBANKS ARE YOUR FRIEND!
    • The shuttle ride to Coachella can be anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour long. It would be a waste for you to leave the site once you get there. There are very few places you can charge your phone, if any. I highly recommend having a few fully charged powerbanks in your arsenal.
  4. GET ON YOUR LEVEL RESPONSIBLY!
    • Coachella will make you party harder than you ever have before. Stay hydrated, eat well, and know what you are doing. I won’t turn into Mama Jo, but please, please, please, be mindful of your liquor and more. You don’t want to end up cutting the fun short.
  5. HANG OUT IN PALM SPRINGS IF YOU HAVE FREE TIME!
    • Palm Springs is pretty cool little city. They have some renowned eateries, amazing sites, and you can take a tram over the mountains. The scenery is everything and you can even go hiking. It’s okay to not go straight to Coachella. Take a few hours to explore what the city has to offer and grab a bite to eat. I personally LOVED Cheeky’s. The food was bomb!
  6. PACK YOUR ESSENTIALS FOR THE DAY!
    • You cannot bring any beverages into the event, but you can pack some necessities for the day. I recommend, lip chap, towels, sunscreen, a mini battery powered fan, powerbanks, empty water bottles, hand sanitizer, headache medicine, and some granola bars. I will explain the food situation next. Oh yeah, and DO NOT LOSE YOUR SHUTTLE PASS! They are pretty chill about helping you out if you do lose it, but hold on to it. I recommend maybe getting a fanny pack, drawstring bag, or a lanyard with holder.
  7. THERE IS FOOD AT COACHELLA BUT….
    • There is plenty to eat at Coachella, but the prices can break the bank. Food starts at $10 and up. And for $10 I mean you can get a watermelon quarter. Yes, a section of a watermelon will run you a check. So If I were you, I would eat a hearty breakfast, bring money for lunch, and thug life it until you get home. But don’t be so cheap you pass out from dehydration, or hunger. Take care of yourself.
  8. DOWNLOAD THE COACHELLA APP!
    • This app was sooooo helpful when it came to planning my day. Coachella is not a concert that celebrates just your favorite genre. It is a mix of some of the top artist in the world at the moment. The app will tell you the times and stages your favorite artist will be on for their set. Plan accordingly and keep in mind that you may have to leave a set early to trek to another set happening right after.
  9. PATIENCE IS A VIRTUE!
    • I told you to check your attitude at the door earlier and I mean it. Coachella is pretty good about starting acts on time. However, if you want to see Gucci Mane perform at 8:00PM on the Mojave stage and have a good view, you may need to get there at 7:30 PM. Plan your day and get squad on the same page. Also, the final show of each night will feature your favorite headliner on the biggest stage. You really gotta be prepared to be squeezed in for a while if you want a good view.
  10. HAVE FUN!!!
    • I know I do not need to tell you all to do that, but truly embrace every moment. This is an experience of a lifetime. You are going to meet people from all over the world and sing your heart out to your favorite songs. You can dress how you feel, dance as ugly as you want, and be as turnt as you wanna be. You paid big bucks to be there and it is only right you live it up! Leave inhibitions at the doors, keep your phone charged, snap it up, and liveeee!

I hope you had as much fun reading this fly guide as I had writing it for you. I remember looking up information about Coachella and being so lost! I am all about the beauty of the struggle when traveling, but sometimes, you need a guide to show you the way. Coachella 2018 is set to be the biggest event of the spring and Beyoncé is confirmed to be in attendance as a headliner! I wish you love and light on your journey to Coachella 2018!

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