Festival Season Is Here: Prepare for ACL Weekend 2 with these 4 tips


Camille Mayor / Hilltop Views

Approximately 450,000 people attend ACL Fest each year.

It’s that time of year again. On its 17th year of music and memories, Austin City Limits Music Festival continues to outdo itself. Maybe you’ll be attending with a one day pass, or maybe you’re brave and plan on enduring the fest from start to end. Whether you’re a first-time attendee or a seasoned professional, planning is essential. Here are a few tips to get you through your weekend at Zilker Park.  

TIP 1: Download the app

With eight stages and over 130 bands, you might need some help with scheduling. The Official ACL Festival Mobile App allows you to create your own custom schedules and map out the park prior to attending. All possible information about the festival including set times, emergency information, weather updates and special offers are readily available. Brockhampton, Father John Misty and Hozier are playing at the same time? Well, that’s stressful, but at least you’ll have an app to organize which sacrifices you’re willing to make. Remember to opt-in for push notifications!

TIP 2: For the love of hydration, bring a reusable water bottle

Either bring one or purchase one at the fest. The merch tent sells reusable bottles with a new, colorful design each year. It makes for a necessary fest accessory and a charming commemorative item for years to come. Hydration stations are posted around the park, giving you easy access to refills. Between dancing with your friends, to running across the park to make the next set, to lounging under the unforgiving Texas sun, hydration is a must.


TIP 3: Dress to impress (but not too much)

A cross between stylish and comfortable is in fact possible. As someone who has experienced ACL Fest for a few years now, it is safe to say that dangly jewelry, long sleeved anything, or any footwear besides sneakers are a no-go. It is also important to prepare for any type of weather that may occur. The event will go on rain or shine, so be sure to pack items like a poncho and sunglasses.


TIP 4: Don’t blow your money on merch and food

This is an easy mistake to make. Trust me, I’ve been there. Picture this: a wide-eyed, first-time-fest-goer and absolute band fanatic walks into the merchandise tent, almost immediately acting on impulsivity by purchasing three T-shirts. The total? Over 80 dollars. (It’s me, I’m the fest-goer.) Don’t make the same mistake. At most, I would go for an official ACL T-shirt, or simply purchase online at a time when you are less compelled to spend. The merchandise tent is very alluring, especially as a first time attendee, but it is simultaneously a dollar drain. As for food, “ACL Eats” is an oasis of Austin’s well-known local food vendors– a huge step up from your typical festival eats. While there are delicious options available, buying multiple meals there throughout the day can add up. Try eating elsewhere before getting to the park.