Last Thursday at 9 in the morning, tickets for Electric Picnic went on general sale and at around 9.05 they were sold out. Instead of moaning and scrambling around trying to source an overpriced ticket for what is an underwhelming line-up this year, here are 3 affordable festivals in Europe that you should check out instead. All of these festivals promise better weather, better music and go on for longer so spending a bit of extra cash is well worth it.
Festival Internacional de Benicássim – Cost of ticket & travel: €358
First up is Benicássim in Spain. Starting in the middle of July, the weather is guaranteed to be better than in Laois in September and it also runs for longer. Party-goers can arrive and camp from the 10th, although the listed act don’t start until Thursday the 13th, running until the 16th. A 9-day camping ticket will only set you back €149 (http://www.fiberfib.com/en/entradas.php) while a return flight leaving on the 10th and returning on the 19th will cost €209 with Ryanair. The festival this year will be lit up by the Red Hot Chilli Peppers, The Weeknd, Kasabian and Foals amongst others. Vámanos muchachos!
Exit Festival – Cost of ticket & travel: €430
Considering its standing in the industry, Exit Festival is not particularly well known in Ireland. It was officially proclaimed as the ‘Best Major European festival’ at the EU Festival Awards, which were held in Groningen in January 2014. The EU Festival Award is considered as one of the most prestigious festival awards in the world. Located in the stunning Petrovaradin Fortress in Serbia, less than 30 kilometres from Belgrade, Exit runs from July 5th to July 9th and this year boasts The Killers, Liam Gallagher, Paul Kalkbrenner, Years and Years, Jamie Jones, Duke Dumont, Hardwell and Faithless as their headline acts. A 5-day camping ticket is currently €138 (http://exit-festival.eventgenius.co.uk/events/Exit-Festival-2017/index.html) and flights leaving Dublin on the 4th and coming home on the 10th are around €287 on Skyscanner, but be warned, they aren’t direct so expect a hungover stopover on the way home.
Open’er Festival – Cost of ticket & travel: €356
Last but not least we have another recipient of an EU Festival Award, Open’er Festival in Poland. Open’er won Best Major Festival consecutively in 2009 and 2010. Taking place in Gdynia-Kosakowo Airport in the very north of Poland, Open’er is running from the 28th of June until the 1st of July and promises not to disappoint this year with a line-up featuring Radiohead, Foo Fighters, The Weeknd, The xx, Mac Miller and Moderat. Tickets are a scarcely believable €150 (http://opener.pl/en/TICKETS2) while flights over the day before and leaving the day after are just over €200 with Ryanair. A 25-minute train from Gdansk to Gdynia and one free shuttle bus later and you’re there.