Scored tickets to Miami’s hottest music festival and need to know what to bring to Ultra this year? I’m definitely excited for you, because Bayfront Park is gonna be lit!
I won’t be there, but as a grizzled music festival veteran — Coachella 3x, Snowglobe 4x, Outside Lands 5x, plus Hard Summer and Lollapalooza Berlin — I’ve developed a go-to checklist of stuff I never go without.
Of course, while I think this list will serve you well, it still is just MHO. You may need things that aren’t on this list, or want to leave some of these things behind. Up to you.
But if I was going, here’s what I’d say you need for the Ultra music festival:
At a glance:
- What to Bring to Ultra music festival:
- Here’s What NOT to Bring to Ultra music festival
1. HELO Plus Caffeine Diffusers
Want to enjoy every minute of your time at Ultra? I know from experience that if you want to be able to keep going … and going … and going … MELO’s line of HELO caffeine diffusers would top my list of what to bring.
HELO Plus diffusers are the fastest way to get a quick caffeine boost in a convenient, tasty form. They work just like regular vapes, but here nicotine is replaced with caffeine for a much healthier energy boost.
There’s a reason we call HELO Plus “Zeus’s oxygen.” It’s because every one of our caffeine diffusers packs more than just a jolt of energy … they also deliver a jolt of alertness and mental clarity, making them a great caffeine gum alternative and a perfect way to help keep the fun going hour after hour.
Each one is packed with 800 inhales of natural caffeine in one of six proprietary, mouth-watering flavors, like caramel coffee, aloe grape and tropic slush (perfect for the tropical Florida weather!)
They can help you party without worry, because HELO Plus is a caffeine vape guaranteed to contain all the stuff you want — natural caffeine, organic vegetable glycerin, and natural flavors — and nothing you don’t, like diacetyl (associated with popcorn lung), vitamin E acetate (known to cause lung injury), propylene glycol (a petroleum derivative), or nicotine.
2. MELO Sips
Here’s the flip side of #1: it’s one thing to go full tilt all day, and even well into the night. But at some point, you’re going to want to wind down.
MELO Sips are a conveniently packaged beverage mix that makes for a perfect bedtime aid. With melatonin plus a blend of vitamins and herbs that can help your body rest and recover, MELO Sips have everything you need to bounce back after a long day of high energy and high stimulation.
Unlike other sleep aids that contain chemicals, each pack comes with 10 sachets of our own proprietary “dream powder” mix of all-natural ingredients. Melatonin, valerian and chamomile can help support restful sleep, and ingredients like zinc, B vitamins, potassium and L-theanine can boost muscle recovery and support your brain and nervous system. (Learn why melatonin is superior to alternatives like Zzzquill here.)
Just mix with water, stir, sip and enjoy.
Your ticket isn’t the only thing you need to have on hand when it comes to “paperwork.” You’re also going to need a valid and current ID.
For starters, Ultra is an over-18 event. So you’ll need to prove you meet the age requirements to get in. And, of course, you’ll need ID if you plan to purchase alcohol.
A driver’s license, passport, military ID or other government issued photo ID are acceptable. Things like school IDs, voter cards or birth certificates are not.
4. Comfortable Walking Shoes
Did you know that most festival-goers walk 7-10 miles per day? That’s a lot of ground to cover in stilettos.
Bottom line — you’re going to be on your feet a lot. And you’re going to be doing a lot of walking as you move between stages, head to concessions, or trek the bathroom, etc.
Having your most comfortable shoes just makes life a lot easier. And helps you avoid missing out on the fun due to nasty blisters or worse.
5. Wet Wipes/Baby Wipes/Toilet Paper
There are a few reasons behind this recommendation. First, festivals can get dusty. Really dusty. If you’ve ever seen cars driving back from Burning Man, you’d think they drove off the set of Mad Max. Having some wipes on hand helps you get rid of all that grime.
Along those same lines, there will be thousands upon thousands of people using porta-potties. At the very least, that means they’re going to get a bit grotty. At worst, they’re going to run low on TP at times, or run out altogether. So be prepared by keeping some of your own around (of course, wipes work here, too).
6. Clear Bags/Fanny Packs/Clutches
Any bag you bring into the venue has to be made of clear plastic, clear vinyl or clear PVC, and can’t be any larger than 13” x 17”.
You can also bring clear zip-top bags (up to 1 gallon), fanny packs and “small clutch bags approximately the size of a hand,” according to the festival’s official security announcement.
Pro tip: ziploc bags come in handy for protecting your phone (and other electronics) from things like rain showers or spilled drinks.
7. Hydration Pack
While you can’t bring outside food or drinks into Ultra, you can bring certain types of hydration packs, as long as they’re empty when you enter.
The official security bulletin says hydration packs “that are not backpacks” are allowed. What’s that mean exactly? The pack can’t have any other large compartments (anything that could fit a paperback book is the rule of thumb) besides the one that holds the hydration pouch.
8. Sun Protection
If you didn’t already know, Florida is kinda sunny. Not only will sunburn ruin your day, but beating sun during hot Florida afternoons will contribute to dehydration. That means things like sunscreen, lip balm, sunglasses and hats or head scarves are Ultra necessities.
9. Ear Plugs
It might seem weird to suggest bringing ear plugs to a music festival, but you should. You never know when they might come in handy. Good ear plugs let you enjoy every second of the music while still protecting your ear drums.
10. Portable Phone Charger
Your phone has to work harder to get and maintain service when there are thousands of phones all clustered around a few overloaded cell towers. Your phone will also get a workout as you capture the best parts of the festival and share them on social media, and that means your battery is likely to drain faster than normal.
To make sure you’re charged up throughout the day, consider bringing a power bank. In fact, bring one that gives you twice as much power as you think you’ll need. You’ll thank me later.
You can’t pay for everything in life with a credit or debit card. Play it safe and have cash on hand for those times when you can’t, or don’t want to, use a card.
12. Cheap Rain Jacket or Poncho
You never know when the skies might open up. And getting stuck with no protection when they do is definitely no fun.
You can grab cheap plastic ponchos for around $1 at places like Walmart or Amazon. Some drug stores or convenience stores probably have them as well.
They may not be the most stylish things, but they’ll keep you dry. Plus, they fold up so they take up almost zero space inside your bag. And if you don’t need it, no problem. Save it for next time.
Here’s What NOT to Bring to Ultra music festival
While the list of what to bring is more exciting, the list of what not to bring is just as important. Most of what’s on this list is pretty obvious, but some prohibited items may be unique to Ultra.
You can’t bring:
- Drugs or illicit substances
- Weapons, including pocket knives and self-defense sprays
- Flammable items
- Outside food or beverages
- Opened over-the-counter medication, cigarettes or tampons (closed is okay)
- Stuffed animals (or real animals)
- Pacifiers, glow sticks, balloons, balls, inflatable balls or frisbees
- Large chains, chained wallets or spiked jewelry
- Laser pens or laser pointers
- Water guns, spray bottles or misters
- Musical instruments, noisemakers or air horns
- Professional cameras or audio recording equipment
- Confetti, streamers or loose glitter
Of course, if you’re unsure if something you want to bring is allowed, just check Ultra’s security policies.
There’s no way to prepare for everything a festival might bring — that’s part of the fun — but this list should help you handle most of what you may encounter. Have a blast out there!
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