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Governors Ball Essentials: Everything You Need to Bring

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Article Summary

  • A list of things that will make your time at Governors Ball more enjoyable
  • Be prepared for all types of weather, your phone dying and a lot of walking
  • Options for sitting and resting between shows

Anyone who has gone to Governors Ball before knows there are some key things you need to bring with you. You can survive without these, but most of them are simple, cheap investments you can make that will really enhance your time at the festival. The point of this article is to go over all the things you should buy, or at least seriously consider, buying before you head off to Governors Ball.

Governors Ball Essential #1 – Camelbak

Event Track Recommends: WACOOL Hydration Pack or CamelBak Hydration Pack
This is a lifesaver at Governors Ball. First, it can be really hot on Randall's Island with everyone packed in for Governors Ball. If it is a hot weekend, hydration will be key to you enjoying all three days without hitting dehydration levels which can make you sick and intensify any hangover you may be subject to. However, even if the weekend of Governors Ball isn't particularly hot, having a Camelbak allows you to carry more water and reduce your trips to the free water refill stations. Capacity my friends which means more time at the Governors Ball stages, and less time running to get water. Plus the Camelbak is not only great for Governors Ball, but for any other music festivals you plan to attend as most allow hydration packs and prefer the option to plastic water bottles.

Governors Ball Essential #2 – Pedialyte

Event Track Recommends: Pedialyte Variety Powder Pack, 24 Count
Even if you are drinking a lot of water, it's still possible to get dehydrated if you're in the sun all day and/or enjoying beverages throughout the weekend. Drinking pedialyte when you get home in the evening and when you wake up is an easy solution that will assist in preventing dehydration and replacing electorlytes and fluids. The powder pack of pedialyte is the easiest option to pack and the least expensive as a single pack can be mixed with up to 12 cups of water, more than enough for everyone in your group. 


Governors Ball Essential #3 – Cheap Sunglasses

Event Track Recommends: Edge I-Wear Neon Party Sunglasses
Some people bring their nice shades to Governors Ball, and a lot of those people drunkenly lose or break them. Leave your $300 designer shades at home and grab this cheap pack of sunglasses that includes a variety of colors and wont cause you a panic attack if you suddenly realize you set them down and forgot about them. Plus having a few extra pairs gives you the opportunity to be the hero when someone in your Governors Ball group loses or forgets their shades. 

Governors Ball Essential #4 – Sunscreen

Event Track Recommends: Neutrogena Sunscreen, SPF 30
The weather has been unpredictable for past Governors Ball weekends, which makes it hard to know in advance if there will be clear sunny skies or overcast weather and possible showers. Regardless of what the weather reports say when you're packing you should bring some sunscreen so you're prepared for any weather. Plus even if it ends up being an overcast weekend in New York, sun rays still come through the clouds making it easy for a sunburn to sneak up on you since the majority of your time at Governors Ball will be spent outside without much shade or coverage.

Governors Ball Essential #5 – Something to keep you dry

Event Track Recommends: Totes Poncho, Compact Umbrella or Umbrella Hat
On the other side of the unpredictable New York weather is the fact that rain is always a possibility at Governors Ball. A poncho is always an easy option, but if you prefer not to wear it, umbrellas are a good backup plan. Only personal sized umbrellas are allowed into Governors Ball, so don't bring anything too big. We selected inexpensive options, since like sunglasses they're easy to set down and forget about when not needed. The compact umbrella may only last a few weeks according to the reviews, but it's only $6.50 and will get the job done when it comes to keeping you dry at Governors Ball for the weekend. Now the question is are you going to go with the regular umbrella or the umbrella hat?

Governors Ball Essential #6 – Earplugs

Event Track Recommends: Eargasm High Fidelity Earplugs
Want to protect your hearing without losing any of the sound quality? These earplugs are your best bet, you'll still hear everything, but at a noise level that's safe for your ears. Not only do these earplugs have 4.4 stars on Amazon, but the reviews include musicians, who can't cut corners on sound quality when it comes to playing live, so you can trust you're getting a great product for a really good price.

Governors Ball Essential #7 – Portable Phone Charger

Event Track Recommends: Anker Astro Ultra Compact Portable Charger
If you have ever been anywhere with a huge crowd, like Governors Ball, you will know your cell phone service is going to struggle. As your iPhone struggles to find that one precious bar at Governors Ball, the battery is getting drained quickly. Bring a portable phone charger to Governors Ball so you have a way to re-charge at night when your phone is dying. Having an operating phone is critical, especially if you need to call an Uber to get home or meet back up with friends at the end of the night. Save yourself from a precarious situation by investing in a reasonably priced phone charger.

Governors Ball Essential #8 – Battery Case

Event Track Recommends: iPhone 7 Battery CaseiPhone 6 Battery Case
Same logic as the portable phone charger, just a different approach to the same Governors Ball problem. The nice part with the case is you can easily use it without having to carry something extra with you.

Governors Ball Essential #9 – Hand Sanitizer

Event Track Recommends: PURELL Advanced Instant Hand Sanitizer
Have you ever been to a Governors Ball bathroom in the evening hours? If you haven’t, just know that what has been seen cannot be unseen. Even as a male who is not easily grossed out, I can unequivocally tell you they can be filthy. Furthermore, there is about an 87% chance the soap dispenser ran out of soap 3 hours ago so you'll have no way to properly clean your hands. Do you really want to eat those late night munchies with gross bathroom germs on your hands? Bring some small bottles of hand sanitizer with you to Governors Ball. They won’t solve your Governors Ball bathroom woes completely, but at least your hands wont be disgusting when you use them to eat!

Governors Ball Essential #10 – Tissue Paper Products

Event Track Recommends: Kleenex Facial Tissues, 10 ct, 3 Pack
Speaking of bathrooms, this is primarily a female essential from what my fiance tells me. As she tells it, the bathrooms will run out of toilet paper and if you're a female you'll will want to bring some form of backup with you. These small packs of kleenex are easy to grab and will fit into most any size bag. 

Governors Ball Essential #11 – Comfy Shoes

I don't have a specific recommendation as this is far too personal, but I cannot stress the importance of having comfortable shoes for Governors Ball enough. Governors Ball days are tough, even for someone who unequivocally loves Governors Ball. It's hot, you’re on your feet all day, you walk 11.7 miles running between stages, you'll want to do all of this in comfortable shoes. Do not go to Governors Ball in a new pair of shoes unless you are a fan of blisters. If that is the case, by all means wear your new shoes. I would also note there is a solid chance your shoes come back in rough shape after Governors Ball, so be ok with whatever you wear being ruined.

Governors Ball Essential #12 – Blanket

Event Track Recommends: Cosy Meadow Outdoor Festival Blanket
When you want a good spot for a specific show or you're seeing back-to-back artists for the same set, you'll have downtime while you wait where you are just standing/sitting around. For these times, the ground is always a free and accessible option, but if you want a cleaner option, we recommend bringing a blanket with you. This blanket is a lower priced, lightweight option that can withstand the rain and will be easy to carry around with you. 

Governors Ball Essential #13 – Drawstring Backpack

Event Track Recommends: Drawstring Backpack
LiveNation will be implementing their "small" bags and backpacks policy, so standard size backpacks will not be allowed into Governors Ball. The rule isn't very specific and they're currently not providing specific dimensions, but in general they approve of drawstring backpacks below standard backpack size. Our recommended drawstring backpack is cheap, big enough to hold your small essentials (sunglasses, umbrella, portable charger, etc) and most importantly complies with the rules, which means you'll be able to bring it in to Governors Ball.

Governors Ball Essential #14 – Cash

Pretty much every vendor takes card at Governors Ball and there's always the cashless wristband option, but it’s still nice to have cash in some situations. Cash is quicker, which can be important when you are trying to rush to get back to the stage for a show. It’s also just nice to have a few bucks to buy the a cheap bottle of water quickly versus having to wait for the card to go through. I always recommend bringing at least around $40 to Governors Ball for small purchases here and there.


There you have it, all the things you need to bring with you to Governors Ball to enhance your experience. I know it’s a lot of stuff, but most of it is really cheap and completely worth the cost. Have you discovered other essentials in your Governors Ball travels? I’d legitimately love to hear them! Let me know by contacting me at

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