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A Guide To Hooking Up At Music Festivals: The Do’s & Don’ts

Of all places, music festivals are a great place to hook up or even find long lasting love. It’s where you’re surrounded with people who like the same music, are going for the same experiences and atmosphere. People at dance music festivals are looking for freedom, to escape everyday expectations of their routine and realities into a world of fun, dance, music and connecting with like-minded people. “You’re in a completely different environment, you lose your inhibitions a little bit, and you let your guard down. And that also involves meeting new people and being more open to meeting people.” says sexologist Laura Miano.

Another great element of music festivals is the music itself.

Music makes us feel amazing, it paints the atmosphere with a lively and unique vibe while allowing the listeners to get into a certain emotional state and finding common ground. Add to that the alcohol and you get people who are more confident to talk and interact with each other. Whether you’ll end up in a short term or long term relationship, it is your call.

Here are the key steps to hooking up at music festivals:

Meet Someone at the festival (click to read how)

Understand this KEY PART

Get It Going (here’s how)

Would You Need An App?

If the primary objective of your festival experience is to hook up, we suggest doing some research first into the type of people who attend the festival(s) you have in mind. It is true that like-minded people will meet at EDM festivals around the world, but it’s important to know what type or who you’re looking for. For instance, if you don’t like coked-out dudes, then you probably should avoid SXSW, and if the idea of a weird guy with dreads wearing a tutu and a metal eyepatch isn’t your thing, then maybe steer clear of Burning Man. However, if you love hipster appropriation of indigenous peoples’ culture, then you might definitely want to check out Coachella. We know these are stereotypes, but it is important to keep those things in mind.

We will discuss below how some people find long-term love at music festivals while others only aim for the short-term fling. We’ll also give tips on meeting someone, and getting it going. Let’s dive right in!

Why are festivals great places to hook up?

Music festivals, especially the electronic dance music types, are gatherings of people looking for the same thing: experiencing music on a large scale, with other like-minded individuals.

During a music festival, people are immersed in a unique environment and experience that takes them out of their routine life and everyday struggles, into a fun and vibrant world of positivity, love, unity and respect. Nobody’s judging where others come from, who they are, what they love…it’s all a blend of everything. And it’s beautiful! Especially when we look at pictures of large gatherings like Tomorrowland for example and we see all these flags from various countries across every  continent all coming in unity for the love of life and music.

Music is a celebration of life and the world, it’s a way to express feelings and emotions. Imagine hundreds of thousands of people coming together JUST for that, imagine the joy this brings. The dancing, the music, the food, the smiles. I talk about what people do at EDM festivals in a blog post which I recommend checking out.

In short, music festivals are Dopamine-filled experiences on a very large scale. It’s where people tend to be more accepting and less judgemental, which is a huge help. Add to that the music that makes all these people feel absolutely amazing, and you got yourself the best recipe for a flow of emotions, expressions and cravings. “I don’t even remember the last time I felt 40 different emotions, but you feel that at a music festival and all of a sudden you feel things like love and lust and novelty and excitement, and of course you’re more prone to want to hook up,” says Dr Jarrod White, a clinical psychologist.

As we previously mentioned, you’ll have to add the alcohol into the mix and you’ll have people who are braver and more inclined to talking to anyone and meeting others throughout the festival grounds.

A festival hookup is a lot like a holiday romance, you’re in a bubble of fun, free from your responsibilities and your senses are heightened. In the real world, you would care about what people have to say, about their ideas, conversations, passions, the way they talk and compose themselves…etc. At festivals, it’s too loud to really hear what anyone’s saying, and you’re too drunk to care, so everyone essentially regresses to their most primal selves.

Credit: Ken Henderson/flickr

Short thing or long-term thing?

As we mentioned in the introductory paragraph, it all depends on what you want. If you find someone who you’d like to be with for the long term, then why not? There are no rules in dating. The magic of a music festival is that you could meet the love of your life or have fun and let the moment exist for what it is. You’ve already got something in common from the start: the love and passion for the music. It might be interesting trying to figure out which artists you enjoy better than others and why. How you ended up discovering a certain album and why it matters to you more than others. It’s all part of the fun game. Not everyone goes to festivals, when you have this in common you can easily take it outside the music festival grounds if you end up with a long term relationship.

A couple I know, ended up together and even got married! After the initial craziness of the festival weekend, they caught up for a few lunches, a coffee here, a birthday dinner there, and eventually realized that they were pretty perfect for each other beyond their love for the music.

But as you might expect, not every case is that easy. You might meet and click with someone who’s in a totally different country, a different continent even! The reality is that music festivals are filled with people from everywhere. The hookup might last only a few days which adds to the excitement of the “festival romance”. Knowing that this is a fleeting moment of sexual attraction or connection with someone and that it might not last makes the whole thing even more enticing and attractive and adds another layer to the freedom festival goers seek during the weekend-long events.

How to Meet Someone?

By now you understand that it’s quite easy to meet people at music festivals. It just takes the courage to go out there and talk.

• You might want to start talking with the group camping next to you. Usually those will become your friends during the festival weekend as you are spending a lot of time with each other.

• You can ask for a flashlight, lighter, water bottle…you name it. Start with that and strike a conversation from there. Anything can be the initial connection and depending on the moment, you’ll know where to take things after that.

• Waiting in line for food, locker area…etc can be a good time to start some small-talk.

• Make sure to swap phone numbers or add each other on social media if you are keen to take it outside the festival gates.

After the initial meeting, you can find more situations to keep things going. It all depends on whether you’d like to take it further. There’s always a way to progress in the flow of things, you always have music playing and artists on stage which can help progress things unto the dance floor and after some dancing you never know where it might lead (your tent maybe?).

The Key Part

The key part is to show everyone, from friends to people you’re interested in, that you’re having fun. And if you get prolonged eye contact from a girl, smile (like you always should), if she smiles back, it’s a go. You need to make a move right then and there and not hesitate. It’s all about being positive, feeling good in your own skin, and projecting a sense of confidence and happiness that attracts others towards you. If you’re genuinely having a good time, people around you will start taking notice. Now if you’ve been to a festival or rave before, you’ll know that a lot of people are on something during the event and it makes it extremely easy (although personally we recommend just enjoying the music and a few drinks).

How to Get it Going?

It all starts with having fun with your group of friends. You’re there with them and they deserve your attention. Once you’ve shared a few drinks, did a few rounds around the festival grounds, you’ll be ready to cast your net.

The important ingredient is having fun: decent, consensual fun. Whether you’re looking for a girl, guy or both, it all comes down to making eye contact, smiling to people, connecting with others on the dance floor and outside.

Once you make eye contact, smile and aim to get the smile back. Be positive, decent and natural with your approach. You want the others to feel like they can have a nice conversation with you regardless of where it would lead. You want everyone to feel welcome around you and not feel like you’re some sick person looking for a body to enjoy. That’s just too creepy and the people with this mindset are very easy to spot.

Once you’ve connected with someone, and had a few words with them, maybe spent a few more minutes around them, based on their body language and interaction with you, you can reach your hand out and if they takes your hand, just spin her/him towards you and start dancing and having fun like you were with your group of friends. Using this technique will make them feel like you are pulling them into your world and giving value, and that value is fun. If you give off any other vibe, it’s usually game over and the technique fails. Make sure it’s consensual, we cannot stress this enough.

After you start dancing (eventually), you need to keep escalating. Dancing is fun for a bit but it gets boring if you don’t escalate and change it up and have fun. Be playful, be interesting and keep some sort of mystery as well. You don’t need to grind, push your body against them or make them feel uncomfortable. Once the playfulness is there, give them some control and follow their lead. You might be surprised as they open up to you. On the other hand, they might do the opposite and back off for some reason. That shouldn’t be a problem. Don’t force it, it’s fine. There are a lot of people around.

The simple truth is: People just want to have a good time and if you show that you are genuinely having a good time, they will want to be pulled into your world, your frame. You paid for the event ticket and made your way there. The least you can do is be in the moment and have fun regardless of the outcome with whoever you meet.

Here are a few tips to keep in mind once things have progressed way beyond the initial meeting point:

• Don’t forget to check in with the other person to make sure they’re still into it. CONSENT changes in a split second, checking in is sexy and boosts your perceived value in the other person’s eyes.

• Don’t do it in a shared tent: you don’t want your friends walking in on you while you’re in the middle of your pleasure session

• Make sure you’ve packed some condoms, lube…etc you know…the essentials.

• Didn’t end up in your tent? No problem, if you’re a guy, keep a cond0m on you. It will come in handy.

• Be aware of the people around you. Sometimes the tent is not a good idea, a private less crowded secluded place can be a good option to consider.

How About Using The Apps?

Honestly, at EDM festivals, you shouldn’t really need it. Most people are not on their apps all the time and it does you better to go out there and be more present in the moment and meet people in the flesh. If you’re a bit shy, these can help but I personally don’t recommend it. You want to look confident, happy and a great person to be with. The app might not show that well especially in a sensory experience like a festival. It could take the magic out of just being open and accepting and non-judgmental, and going with the flow of the event.

The main thing to remember: Whichever type of hookup you’re having, be realistic about it. App or no app, at a festival, you’re in a good zone and if you meet someone who you find cute and you get a kiss, then I think you have those good memories attached to it. Whatever happens, you’ll have these positive memories tied to it. But don’t beat yourself up about having a romantic weekend that leads to the life of your dreams with that partner or to just have a quick fling and move on with your life. Sometimes, people mention that at the end of the night you’ll be too tired to have sex after a full day of dancing and drinking. Maybe the fact that you can’t have sex (for whatever reason) makes you feel like you’re desperately in love. We recommend being realistic, and not thinking too much about it.

You’re there, you’re having fun and meeting like-minded people. You’ve made new friends and found common ground.

That’s some much needed group therapy.

2 thoughts on “A Guide To Hooking Up At Music Festivals: The Do’s & Don’ts”

  1. I think the last paragraph alone is worth the price of admission. I’m going to a festival for the very first time in my life, and I’m going alone. The thought has crossed my mind, but knowing “my generation” (the 80s) if I bet on nothing or disappointment, the odds are good I will win the wager.

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