Bumbershoot

How much does Bumbershoot cost?

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Article Summary

  • We break down the total costs of attending Bumbershoot including wristbands, hotel, food, booze, getting to Bumbershoot daily, and more
  • Final estimate are $850 if you choose a cheap hotel and about $1,050 if you do a more expensive hotel
  • Hotel prices vary a lot in Seattle, you can be towards the lower end of the estimate by booking a budget hotel

Bumbershoot is a really cool festival.  It has a good range of music and has absolutely fantastic location right in downtown Seattle.  Anyone who is going to Bumbershoot knows there’s a lot of planning to do – flights, hotels, tickets, getting to Bumbershoot, etc.  Of course, all of this adds up and can do some serious damage to the wallet.  Often when people think of the music festivals they only consider the price of the tickets, but anyone who has attended knows there are a lot more costs than just tickets.  The point of this article is to go over what you can realistically expect to pay if you attend Bumbershoot.  Obviously this will vary a lot depending on you – what you want to do besides Bumbershoot in Seattle, where you want to go, where you eat, if you have to fly into Seattle, etc – but this is a good approximation for what you can expect.  After this article you should have a starting point for how much you need to attend for Bumbershoot.

Bumbershoot Tickets Cost - $249 GA

Bumbershoot offers a couple of different ticket levels.  The general admission passes for Bumbershoot are $249 as of Bumbershoot 2017.  They also offer upgraded passes in two levels.  VIP passes for Bumbershoot are $450 and VIP is $750.  Let’s be conservative with our Bumbershoot price estimations and say you get the basic general admission passes.  This will cost you about $275 after taxes and fees.  If you are playing along at home and want VIP passes then just adjust my final approximation accordingly. 

Bumbershoot Price by Distance

Bumbershoot Hotel – $250 for Budget Hotel, $450 for 4-Star Hotel

If you’ve travelled to Seattle before you know it can be an expensive city to visit.  Your intuitions are correct! In 2015 Seattle was the 6th most expensive city in the United States to visit.  You can expect a weekend like Bumbershoot then to be fairly costly given the large crowds and the fact that it is over a holiday weekend.  The graph above shows how much you can expect to pay based on how far from Bumbershoot your hotel is.  For example, if you stay within 2 miles of Bumbershoot the average hotel price is nearly $300.  Clearly to stay within 2 or even 5 miles is far more expensive than if you are willing to stay further away.  This is typical of most music festivals and Bumbershoot is no exception.

When approximating hotel costs for music festivals I prefer to give an upper and lower bound for hotel prices.  Thus I will approximate Bumbershoot hotel costs with a lower end hotel and a good,  4-star hotel.  Yes, if you stay in a hostel it will be cheaper.  Yes, if you stay at the Four Seasons it will be more expensive.  These approximations are meant for the majority of people to give you an estimate of how much Bumbershoot is going to cost you potentially.  It should also be noted that these prices are as of the day I am posting this article, prices are sure to go up as we get closer to Bumbershoot.

Cheap Hotel Option
First I will go over the budget hotel route.  Hotel Seattle appears to he the best deal currently available for a decent hotel.  It’s only a 2-star hotel but it does have 4 stars on Yelp and is only 1.6 miles away from Bumbershoot.  It’s also in the heart of Seattle and right by Pike’s Place market.  At $140 a night it will cost you about $525 for your Bumbershoot weekend after taxes and fees.  This will be $263 if you split the hotel.  Not bad for a hotel in the downtown area of an expensive city during the music festival.

More Expensive Hotel Option
On the other end of the cost spectrum, let’s assume you too want a hotel in Seattle, but at least 4-stars.  Currently the best deal is the Crown Plaza in downtown Seattle at $293 a night.  The hotel is again right by Pike’s Place market, so there is a lot going on around it (99 Walk Score) and it has solid reviews.  This hotel will cost you about $1000 for your Bumbershoot weekend, or $500 a person.

Again, there will always be variation in the hotel price you end up paying.  You can go cheaper or more expensive, but I tried to give a reasonable approximation.  If you go with a budget hotel option for Bumbershoot, and stay in Seattle, you are looking at about $260+ a person.  If you stay at a nicer hotel, but not The Ritz you can expect about $500 a person.  The earlier you book the more likely it will be you can find a deal, especially given Bumbershoot occurs over a holiday weekend. My main advice is to find a way to stay in the downtown area, even if you need to stay at a lower star accommodation. Seattle is a great city and staying near downtown will give you easy access to Bumbershoot.

Food & Booze - $125 a day

Seattle has a lot of great food, and you should try to experience it while you are at Bumbershoot.  You could save some money by eating McDonald’s everyday, but you’d really be missing out.  Seattle is one of my favorite cities I have ever visited for food.  Go to Pike’s Market and try some of their famous seafood or whatever tickles your fancy.  If you have a sweet tooth the Daily Dozen Donut Company make phenomenal little sugar donuts, definitely check them out if you are at Pike's. Let’s be conservative and say you do your fair share of eating and boozing at Bumbershoot and throughout Seattle so you rack up about $125 a day in sustenance expenditures.  This will cost you then $375 for the entire Bumbershoot weekend.

Getting to Bumbershoot - $30 for the weekend

Bumbershoot has excellent location, right by the Space Needle in Seattle.  If you are staying downtown you should be able to walk there, which would obviously be nice and free. If you aren’t the walking type, or you have females in heels with you, you could take the bus.  The D-Line, 3 and 4 buses of Seattle all go there from downtown Seattle and will only cost you $2.50.  If you hate both walking and public transportation you could get an Uber, which shouldn’t be too expensive.  If you are staying outside of Seattle you should look into your options of taking the light rail.  Labor Day weekend in Seattle is quite busy so if you can avoid driving or parking fees you should.  We will say you mostly walk to Bumbershoot, and maybe take 1 or 2 Uber’s back to your downtown hotel so this adds up to $30 for the weekend – pretty reasonable!

Airfare to Seattle – Varies

Obviously this is going to be a big part of your Bumbershoot expenses, but I can’t estimate this without knowing where you are from.  Southwest and Alaska typically have really good rates for getting to Seattle, especially if you are coming from the west coast.  Keep in mind that Bumbershoot occurs over Labor Day weekend, which is a really busy weekend in Seattle.  Like with most things with travel I would just suggest not waiting too long to book this – Bumbershoot is a busy weekend and flights rarely go down for such holiday weekends.

Travelling from the Airport to Seattle - $2.50 Each Way

The Seattle light rail is super easy for getting from the airport to your Bumbershoot hotel.  It’s about a 40 minute trip and only costs $2.50 each way, or $5 round trip.  It drops off right downtown and you can catch it right by baggage claim at the airport.  The train runs quite frequently so you shouldn’t have to wait long going either direction.  You could Uber but this is a great, inexpensive option so I suggest you go this route. 

Bumbershoot Train

Total Bumbershoot Costs

Item

Cost

Tickets

$275

Hotel

$263 - 500

Food & Booze

$375

Getting to Bumbershoot

$30

Airfare to Bumbershoot

Varies

Travelling to/from Airport

$5

Total

$948 - 1175+

So for your Bumbershoot trip you are looking at $850 at least.  Again, I know you can do everything cheaper or more luxuriously, but this is a pretty good starting point for approximation of the costs for Bumbershoot.  Like I said at the beginning, just because you got your tickets doesn’t mean you’ve paid for your entire Bumbershoot experience.  My biggest tip for reducing these costs is to book everything Bumbershoot early, especially the hotel.  Labor Day will get expensive in Seattle.  Also, once the lineup for Bumbershoot is released and the general ticket sale begins you can expect these prices to go up.  As is often the case with life, the early bird gets the worm.

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