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The Survival Guide To Festival Toilets

The Survival Guide To Festival Toilets

Festival toilets are the bane of every music fan's life - campsite portaloos are notoriously dirty, smelly, unhygienic, and all-round unpleasant. We show you how to survive horrible music event facilities, use your wet wipes wisely and keep hold of your toilet roll!

Step 1: You will need

  • 1 Toilet roll
  • 1 Packet of wetwipes
  • 1 Antibacterial hand gel
  • 1 Packet of anti-diarrheal medicine
  • 1 Bottled water
  • 1 Small torch
  • 2 Sturdy thighs

Step 2: Pack your toilet roll.

The most golden of all festival rules is to always bring your own toilet paper. Never, ever, let it out of your sight because all's fair in love and loo roll... If you forget it or lose it then steal the first unguarded roll you come across. You'll feel guilty for about ten minutes, then congratulate yourself for the rest of the festival.

Step 3: Know your toilet options

Thousands of happy campers peeing in the dark doesn't make for a fragrant atmosphere, so use the toilets at the perimeter of the site if you're passing or use the ones in the music arenas – they're often nicer. Look out for disabled toilets too – but check you're allowed to use them before you do – and if you manage to blag your way backstage then go while you have the chance! Not only are they cleaner, but you'll have shared a seat with some famous cheeks...

Along with the plastic portaloos, you may be blessed urinals, Use them if you find them. Most blokes opt for the hedges (or someone else's tent), but most festivals boast open air urinals a-plenty. Use them to protect the health of the wildlife on site, and your fellow campers.

Step 4: Keep an eye out for the sewage vans.

These trucks empty the portaloos and slurry pits on a daily basis – take a note of when they come, and make sure you use them soon after. The stench will be far less overpowering.

Step 5: Learn to hover.

If you can't face the thought of a thousand bare bums on one seat then get ready to master the art of hovering:

The Famous Festival Squat: this works for toilets set into platforms – place one foot on either side of the bowl and squat away, using your hands to brace yourself against the walls either side. You may have to get creative.... but whatever you do, don't slip.

Step 6: Take a torch.

A lot of festival facilities aren't lit – if you're braving the toilets at night, take a torch, wear boots to protect you from the inevitable sludge, and watch you don't slip on anything unpleasant.

Step 7: Wash your hands.

Unless you fancy a nasty bout of diarrhea, always wash your hands after using the loos, because you'll be eating throughout the day. There may not be soap so carry a small packet of wetwipes or no-water-needed antibacterial hand gel on you at all times – they both kill off germs, and wetwipes can also be used to wipe down the toilet seat if you want to sit down.

Step 8: Avoid an upset stomach.

Festival food and drink is like playing Russian roulette with your insides – your bowels can and will wreak their revenge. Choose wisely, drink plenty of water to avoid hangovers and dehydration, and take a stash of anti-diarrheal tablets for use at the first sign of stomach trouble – but pay close attention to the stated dosage instructions and don't overdo it.

Step 9: Hold your nose.

Sometimes there's nothing else for it – take a deep breath, hold your nose, and get in and out as fast as you can! After all, it's all part of the festival experience...