Coachella or Coachillin?

Coachella or Coachillin?

Few students at Newport Harbor go to Coachella- however many want to. Cost, time, and a place to stay, are constant struggles in the overpriced festival season. I decided to share my past Coachella experiences, in order to establish a better definition of Coachella, other than the typical “music festival” response. Credibility Note: I have been to Coachella twice- Weekend Two VIP 2015 & Weekend One GA 2016.


430e0343-a40c-42a0-8af9-25fec2352e1cFirst of all, you choose your crowd. You can choose to hang out with either the “crazies” or “normal” people. The common stereotype of Coachella is that everyone is crazy and wild, however this is not always the case. When I first went to Coachella, I went to Weekend Two. If you are going to Coachella for the first time, I would definitely suggest going to Weekend Two. There are around 30,000 less people there when compared to Weekend One. Also, tickets are cheaper (if you buy off of Craigslist)! This year, I decided to go to Coachella Weekend One. Honestly, it was way more crowded than last year- but this might be because the lineup this year was better than last year. I ended up going with General Admission because of the price. I got two tickets the night before Coachella Weekend One this year and paid more than face value because I waited until the last minute.
Secondly, go on Craigslist to look for wristbands. Seriously. The wristbands are usually cheaper than face value. The most important thing to do is to download the actual Coachella App in the Apple Store. This way, you can register your wristbands in front of the person selling them before you spend $500+ for wristbands that might not even work (yes, sadly many fake Coachella wristbands are on Craigslist). This year at Weekend One, I actually witnessed two people’s wristbands be denied from the scanners to get into Coachella because they unknowingly purchased fake tickets over Craigslist. Usually the best time to go look for wristbands on Craigslist is two to three days before the festival. On the day of the festival this year, people were charging $700 and up just for General Admission tickets, which were about double of the original face value. Just plan ahead.
If you do not have the time and money for Coachella, just go for one day. Drive up to Indio and have a friend try to find wristbands on Craigslist on your way there. On Sunday night, one day tickets were just $100-$150. You can sleep in your car if worst comes to worst and you do not find a place to stay. Sleeping in your car does not cost any money, and many people who attend Coachella do this because all hotels are sold out or extremely overpriced. Note: I attended all three days of Coachella Weekend One. I stayed with family friends and did not pay for a hotel, nor sleep in a car. Coachella also has a campground but I have never tried it.
Do yourself a favor and buy a Shuttle Pass. This way, you get to avoid the approximately 1 mile walk to Coachella through the camping section. Also, when leaving Coachella, you still have to walk a bit to get to the shuttle, but after you get free water and get dropped off at a hotel. Once at a hotel, try to get an Uber. Even better, on the actual shuttle try to secure an Uber. Let me warn you that Ubers during festival nights are very overpriced and unavailable. Make sure you have Lyft and Uber apps from the Apple Store on your phone for options because all Taxi lines are busy and take at least an hour to arrive.

***Phone service is very limited at Coachella- sometimes my phone worked, sometimes it did not. It is horrible and great at the same time because you truly get to enjoy being in the moment. Since service is limited, I recommend printing out the concert schedule and times beforehand- and trying to put them in a plastic cover of some sort. This is because of the wind/dirt/regular wear and tear will destroy the normal printer paper. To organize what bands I was seeing and at what time, I circled bands on the schedule. This way, in case your phone dies or you do not have service, you do not have to worry (that much). Coachella usually posts an official picture with the final lineup and times on their website.

Lastly, relax & enjoy yourself!

Written By: Jordan Golden