LOLLAPALOOZAAAAAAAA! LOLLAPALOOZAAAAAAAA! LOLLAPALOOZAAAAAAAAAAAA!
That was literally my excitement last year around this time when I had gotten my hands on tickets and was about to experience attending Lolla for the first time. Lollapalooza is an annual music festival that takes place usually near the end of summer in Chicago for 3 days (last year it was 4 days to celebrate its 25th year anniversary) with a variety of genres of music.
So, a few days ago I got an email from Lolla (I’m still subscribed to them) and was noticed that tickets will be going on sale in less than a week! I won’t be able to make it this year, but I figured I’d put together a guide for any of you interested or thinking about attending Lollapalooza this year! WHICH YOU SHOULD BECAUSE IT’S SO MUCH FUN!
Tickets will sell out quickly. Literally, like within minutes. As soon as tickets had gone on sale, I had been placed on hold on my cellphone and laptop… they had sold out before I even made it to checkout. My friend, Marjorie, ended up buying our tickets (same day) from Stubhub for a little over $500. A little too pricey, but we had already planned out the trip in advance and needed tickets anyways.
Be prepared. Have as many devices as possible ready to click on the tickets the second they go on sale. Plan it with your friends, so that they can also be ready on time. Hopefully your chances will be better and you’ll actually get to buy tickets from the site. If not, don’t fear, people will be selling the passes through secondary market ticketsellers, but they will be a bit more pricey than originals.
For Lollapalooza 2017, it will also be 4 days (yay for you) and the current price for an all 4-day pass is $335. Those will go on sale first and then the individual day tickets will go on sale later on, which are currently $120 per day.
If I remember correctly, the lineup came out the day after the 4 – day pass tickets went on sale last year. I know some people are hesitant about buying tickets before they know who is actually playing, but that’s part of the thrill about music festivals! If you’re set on going, buy your tickets, and then be amazed when the lineup is revealed. I’m pretty sure you will find at least one good artist you’ll be excited about watching, but if you don’t like ANYONE then either sell your ticket or just go and enjoy yourself. Go and discover new artists!
Do not loose your wristband as soon as it is delivered to you and don’t do anything to mess with it. Trust me. Once you actually put it on on the first day of Lolla, you cannot take it off at all. It’s just a rule. So, make sure you don’t put it on too tightly or it will be uncomfortable for the rest of your Lolla days, but be sure it’s not too loose or the security guards will tell you to tighten it further.
There are a couple of very important things to know about your wristband:
- This is your ticket – your entry to the festival grounds
- You will need to activate it before the fesitval. There will be an activation link later on on the website
- It can get wet, so don’t be afraid to shower with it because it was designed to be waterproof
- Your wristband is also known as Lolla Cashless, which means that you can link your debit card to it and not have to worry about taking debit/credit cards with you. Transactions will always go through as long as you have money in your bank
Where to stay:
There are loads of hotels, hostels, and airbnb rentals you can book in the city! If your budget permits, then I would recommend staying somewhere close to Grant Park where you can conveniently walk to and back afterwards. The Lollapalooza website does a good job on advising on where to stay, or book through if you’re coming in with a rather large group.
These hotels/hostels are walkable distance from Grant Park. Book early because they will all be booked before you know it. You can click on the names of the hotel to go to their websites.
- Congress Plaza Hotel (which I stayed at – highly recommend if you literally want to be across the street from Grant Park)
- Travelodge Hotel Downtown
- Hotel Blake
- The Blackstone Renaissance Chicago Hotel
- Chicagos Essex Inn
- Best Western Grant Park Hotel
- Chicago Athletic Association
- Kimpton Hotel Monaco Chicago
- HI Chicago Hostel
- Hilton Chicago
If you don’t wish to spend a lot on hotel, then the further away you are from the park, the cheaper they’ll be. There are loads of other hotels you can easily find though.
What to wear:
Ladies: Wear whatever you want! Be as stylish or as comfortable as you wish to be! I wore a mix of rompers and shorts with crop tops.
Men: Um, you can go shirtless like a lot of others, if you want?
Both: Wear comfy shoes!! And mind the weather, it will probably be humid outside, but it’ll probably rain too.
- Money: Leave your debit/credit cards at your hotels and sign up with Lolla Cashless! Also, if you insist on bringing cash with you, take some out at a local bank or an ATM. The ATMs inside the festival grounds (there will be loads everywhere) have ridiculous fees, so save yourself from them
- Weather: Keep an eye out for the weather, but don’t let it discourage you at all if it rains! Many people wear ponchos over their clothes (I never wore one), but it’s a good idea if you don’t wish to get your clothes wet
- Bag checks, as always, are enforced so make sure to check out the website for the official list of what you can and cannot bring inside
- You are allowed up to 3 re – entries per day. Make use of them if you wish to. I certainly did
- Chicago’s public transportation is good, so make use of it if you’re coming in from quite a distance to the festival grounds
- There are loads of police officers inside the festival grounds. Beware, control yourself, and be good
- Entry and exit lines will be LONG, so get yourself there at least an hour before your desired artist is set to perform
- Download the Lolla App! It will become very helpful and useful throughout your Lolla days
- Discover new artists! It was my first time listening to a lot of new cool artists for me thanks to Marjorie’s husband who showed us
- If you haven’t yet already subscribed to Lolla’s, then do so right now! Like right now! Go!
- Stay hydrated! Lots of people always pass out (whether it be because of lack of water or drugs), so don’t be one of those
- There will be lots of food vendors, so don’t starve yourself one bit
- Don’t be afraid of going to see an artist on your own! I was a little paranoid at first when my friends decided to not join me and see a band I had really wanted to watch (M83), but I had so much fun being alone either way. The crowd around you doesn’t make it feel like you’re alone at all
- Live in the moment! Take photos or videos, do it. Although, I left my phone every day in the hotel because I didn’t find it necessary to have and didn’t wish to carry it (but I do wish I had taken photos), so don’t be glued to your phone too much. Enjoy the festival!
- Charge your phone to its 100% before going to the festival or bring your charger with you, too. There will be limited spots where you can plug it in and charge your phone
- There will be lockers. You can rent one if you don’t wish to be carrying your items around with you all day
- Bring napkins with you when using the porta potties. The toilet paper will have probably run out by the time you get there
- HAVE FUN AND BE SAFE, YA’LL
Dates: 3-6 August, 2017
Location: Grant Park
Have any other questions or anything else you’d like to add on?