As a Chicago native, it is pretty much expected of me to LOVE Lollapalooza and attend every year. Since they have recently switched from a three-day to a four-day festival, the hype around Lollapalooza has only increased, but for me, I avoid the festival at all costs. Not only is it extremely expensive, but after experiencing the festival in 2017, I have no desire to return, and here’s why:
1. Too Expensive
Like I said, Lollapalooza – and almost every other music festival for that matter – is extremely expensive. True, you do get to see a lot of different artists for the price, but the odds of you liking more than four or five of the artists on the lineup is slim, and if you do, they are likely playing on different days, so you either spend more money seeing them or choose your favorite. There really is no winning situation.
The food is also overpriced, too. When I attended Lollapalooza in 2017, I paid an arm and a leg for one slice of deep dish pizza and a water bottle, and I was not satisfied, but I refused to spend money on more food. Each water bottle cost at least $5, and under the August sun, you need to stay hydrated.
2. Too Long
Four days for a music festival is way too long, and so are the hours that the festival runs each day. In 2017, I went to Lollapalooza on Thursday to see Lorde play. She was closing for the day, but the friends I was going with wanted to see other artists playing throughout the day, so we woke up at 8 a.m., got ready, and headed downtown by 10 a.m. I was exhausted, and I definitely was not in the mood to rave at Perry’s by noon that day. While I was there, people actually took naps in the shade and laid there for hours. Basically, they paid for a really crappy 2-hour nap in the dirt.
That was only after one day at the festival – pushing yourself to attend all four days is difficult on your body. Not only will you likely experience dehydration, but because of how expensive the food is, you will likely not eat enough, meaning you will not have enough energy to last the entire day. You are constantly on your feet, running from one stage to another, and standing for hours waiting for artists to play. It takes a toll on your body.
3. Uncomfortable Clothes
When you attend music festivals, it is expected of you to rock the trendiest festival looks. You better have long braids, glitter in your hair, chains, and jewelry, and the cutest bodysuit you have ever seen, or you’re not doing Lollapalooza correctly. Sure, you may look cute, but after spending all day in the sun, your bodysuit will give you weird tan lines, your scalp will itch from the glitter, your makeup will be running down your face from the sweat and heat, and the blisters on your feet will bleed from the uncomfortable shoes you choose to wear for an all-day music festival. Overall, the fashion may look cute, but it is not ideal at all.
Lollapalooza is FILTHY – all music festivals are. When you shove thousands of people into one gated area, you cannot expect the area to stay clean. Garbage lines the curbs of the road and covers the grass wherever you go. Expect to step in an unknown substance, because people drop food all over the ground. The Porta Potties are disgusting after the first day. Either pack your own toilet paper or go without using any, because there won’t be any left after day one.
Lollapalooza seriously is not safe. With people sneaking drugs into the festival and others pick-pocking phones out of backpacks and pockets, it definitely is not the safest area in the city. Two of my friends got their phones stolen during Lollapalooza 2018. One Lollapalooza attendee actually died last year at the festival after being found unresponsive at the festival – Chicago police arrested another 12 attendees and sent 160 others to the hospital.