The comprehensive guide of how to sneak into a festival
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The comprehensive guide of how to sneak into a festival

when top notch festivals like R&V and Homegrown become sell-out shows, we understand that sometimes, some people can be pushed to drastic measures....

We know how it goes. You’ve been putting off buying a ticket. The prices have hiked  up so much in 2017, one day of musical glory and experience equates to three weeks’ worth of food.

Your bank balance is forcing you to sit on the fence. But all your friends are going. The hype is real. You’re scraping the coins together last minute. Then BOOM. It’s sold out.

Shit, in the past Coachella has sold out 90,000 GA tickets to both weekends in 39 minutes! Tomorrowland has previously claimed it sells its 180,000 capacity event in just 1 second.

Not that everything’s a sell-out. Sometimes, some of us, just aren’t financially stable enough for the festy life… But the idea of not going makes us FOMO AF…

So, now that the NZ festival season is almost wrapping up, and our official festival friends are less likely to yell at us for encouraging bad behaviour, we decided to put out an anonymous call for festival sneak-in stories.

Here’s a comprehensive guide of how to sneak into a festival. As told by you. Not us. Because sneaking in is STEALING. And you wouldn’t steal a handbag.  *cough*

1.       The under/over

“Got a homeless dude to boost me over the fence.  Got caught but charmed my way into not been taken to the cops tent, and when the security guard I charmed (with the prospect of a make out session) wasn't looking, I ran into the crowd. Hahaha. It was a rite of passage.”

“My mates snuck into *undisclosed NZ festival*. After taking some form of substance, they just asked a random dude on the side of the road to lift up the fence for them. And he did. They climbed under and asked some random people if they could borrow their flannel tops (to hide the fact they didn't have wrist bands on) and the people said they could keep the tops too.”

Succesful festy sneak in AND new flannel shirts? Score!

2. The “make a big enough scene, security can’t be bothered dealing with you”


“Just got my mate to print the same ticket twice. He went through. Then they scanned mine. They said it had already been scanned. Obviously. So, I just made a big scene: “This is fucking bullshit. I paid $190 for this ticket… and now your machines are telling me I can’t come in. Don’t think so. Fuck this. Get me someone reasonable to talk to.” – they waved me through, worked a charm.”  

3. The swapsy

“This was back when *undisclosed NZ festival* did pass outs (although a lot of festivals still do). Basically, we had friends who bought tickets, so they had wristbands. One slipped theirs off and gave it to another person who still had a band on, then they snuck it out and gave it to me. I slipped it on and walked in the front gate.
We also had to lick the pass out stamp on my mates hand and press it onto mine so that it looked like I had also been passed out of the festival, rather than coming in for the first time.”

4. The stampede – I.e. “There’s power in numbers”

“Some friends of mine snuck into a Micheal Jackson concert in Germany. Security came and they all scattered. One guy was missing for three days. Turned out he'd impaled himself on the fence. Got taken down by the staff and spent the time in hospital. The rest all thought he'd scored some hot backstage action!”

** Dark, we agree. But the impaled guy really took one for the team, as the rest of them managed to  enjoy a smooth night of MJ.  


“92 ish jumping the fence at Glastonbury. When we got in, just up from there, a couple of scousers had made a tunnel under the fence. Then randomly, a group who shall remain nameless, helped take down the whole security fence, letting several thousand people into the festival for free!”

5. The “I’m A DJ” or  “Important person coming through”


“So I was body painted for pride parade. Then drove up to *undisclosed NZ festival*
. And I was like: “Hey I'm here to do a performance art piece”, and they were like: “Where's your band?”
I pretended to look in my bag and was like: “OMG the make-up artists must have put it down somewhere.”
And they were like: “Well, we can drop you up to the main office and you can suss it there.”
Bc who the fuck turns up to a music festival fully body painted without a ticket? Got a ride up into the festival and dropped kinda near the office then walked off in the opposite direction.”

“Oh, one time I snuck into the Rudimental afterparty in Auckland.”

“I walked up with my DJ equipment and I said I was the next DJ on, so I got let in.”

“One time in Sydney, on St Patricks Day everything was mega crowded, lines down the street etc. My friends walked up to security, past the line, at one bar, and I told him: "Matt said we could come in" and he said: "Matt who?" And I stuttered and was like: “Uhhhh" and he was like: "What color hair does he have?” And I was like: "...Brown?" And he was like: “Oh, ok come in.”

**Abbreviated: cause this is a lengthy one.

"Three dudes, drunk af, one having just finished a DJ set, turn up to a festy. One jumps the fence, the other two bitch out, and end up trying to follow security down to an isolated tunnel…

Quite quickly, they were approached by someone asking why they were down there.

One of them had his headphones and CDJs and the other one thought quickly enough, telling the security guard he was in a rush, as this was the main act and he's supposed to be on stage.

The security guard taking the social cues of the headphones and CDJs, grasps the importance of the situation, and ushers them to the lift

In the lift the overly drunk guy kind of slides around one wall to the next and the security guard asks if he is going to DJ like that.

The other guy says, “I guess thats not for me or you to decide" , thanked the security guard for helping him do his job, told him he is really saving his butt...

Then bing, doors open into the main room of the event and off they dissapear into the crowd”


So what we've learned today is:
1. Learn how to take wristbands OFF. 
2. Be agile.
3. There's no harm in trying to jump the fence... Well, not much.
4. Team up.
5. Walk through with a large group of security.
6. If you get caught, try bribery.
7. Use others as a distraction
8. Don't be afraid of causing a scene.
9. Just act like you're supposed to be there and hope nobody questions it.  
10. Wear headphones everywhere and carry a large black bag. Then you can just pretend your the DJ.