Vans Warped Tour 101

First time heading to the Vans Warped Tour? Don’t worry, I’m an old pro. I went to Warped for my first time when I was 13 years old! Not to date myself… but that was a while ago! When I was a teenager, it was the highlight of my summer. My friends and I counted down until our date every year and it was definitely one of the highlights of our year. To this day, it still makes me nostalgic & I love the fact that you can go and see a ton of your favorite and new bands all in one place – for the price of one ticket!

Maybe it’s your first year going, or maybe you’re just looking for some tips to make it the best day ever. Here are some of my tips to help get you ready & get you through Warped! Just remember, be safe, have fun & don’t forget to ROCK OUT!

Where to get tickets

First off… you need tickets. Hopefully you’ve saved a little cash. If you’re saving up or looking for tips to save, check out my DIY Concert Piggy Bank. General Admission tickets cost about $48, which seems like a lot of money, but think about all of the bands you get to see in one day! If you buy your tickets in advance, they’re even cheaper. Be careful of scams on Craigslist — aka ticket scalpers & be sure to shop around before buying. Some sites are cheaper than others & some have limited time discounts. A few of my favorite sites for finding concert tickets:

Ticketnetwork.com

Ticketmaster.com

PurchaseTix.com

Tickets.cheap

What to do before

Next up, it’s time to make a game plan. A few things you need to do:

  • Who are you going with? Figure out a friend or a few friends who are going. If you don’t have any friends that are going, come join my private Facebook group. There are tons of people from around the world who are always looking for new concert buddies: The Revenge Posse.
  • Figure out how you’re getting there. Who’s driving? Do you have someone who could drop you off an pick you up? If you’re driving, is there parking nearby and how much does it cost? You can also download the Uber AppΒ and use my code “erin320” for a $10 credit!
  • How much money do you need to bring? Plan to bring a little extra money for water and food if you’re not going to pack it. Also, if you plan on buying merch, take into consideration how much it could cost.
  • If you bought your tickets online, be sure to print them out and keep them in a safe place.

What to do the NIGHT before

  • Download the Vans Warped Tour App & figure out which bands you might want to check out!
  • Make a list of the bands you want to see. You won’t be able to find out the set times until the day of, but at least you’ll have your priorities set.
  • Pack your bag up (scroll down to “what to bring”).
  • Check the weather – that way you’ll know what to wear & if you need to bring any extra supplies.
  • Also, don’t forget to check out my post about Surviving a General Admission Concert!

What to wear

Have you checked out my blog post about What to Wear to a Concert? Here are the important things to consider:

  • Wear comfortable shoes. I wouldn’t recommend breaking in your new pair of sneakers or wearing heels/open toed shoes.
  • If it’s going to be hot out, wear layers. Shorts and a t-shirt or tank top. Maybe a casual dress. Bring a jacket and throw it into your bag.
  • If you’re like me and don’t like getting sunburnt, wear/bring a hat. You’re going to be under the sun for a long time, a hat will save your face.
  • A comfortable cross body bag or small backpack. You don’t want to bring a bag that’s a hassle or hard to carry. But it’s important to have something that you can keep your supplies and potential souvenirs in.
  • Sunglasses – don’t forget these!

Leopard Print Shoes – Steve Madden

Studded Backpack – Target

Pink Linen Shorts – H&M

Copper Sunglasses – Quay

Denim Hat – B.P.

Crop Top – H&MΒ 

What to bring

  • If you’re packing a bag, I recommend bringing water & a snack (or lunch) to save money. Make sure the water bottle is sealed though!
  • Sunscreen
  • Chapstick
  • Your camera
  • A sharpie (just in case you run into someone and want an autograph) and for writing down set times.
  • Cell Phone
  • External Battery/Charger for your phone (like this one from Ban.do)
  • Cash $$$
  • Your ID & a debit card for backup
  • If it’s going to be raining, consider a jacket or a poncho, maybe even an umbrella.
  • Earplugs (optional)
  • Hair ties
  • Write down important cell phone numbers on a piece of paper or card and keep it in your wallet, just in case your phone dies.

A few DO’s

  • Be considerate of the people around you.
  • Make new friends.
  • Keep an eye out for signing times.
  • Give blood! You can sign up with Music Saves LivesΒ – the first 100 fans that redeem their voucher for giving blood get a backstage wristband!
  • Bring 3 canned food goods, a $5 donation or a used cell phone – donations are made to Feed Out Children Now — you can get in early with an Express Entry wristband.
  • Bring a parent! They get in free!
  • Check out some new bands you’ve never heard.
  • Check out all of the different merch booths and vendors.
  • Take lots of pictures!
  • Have fun!

A few DONT’s

  • Leave alcohol, chains, fancy cameras, illegal substances, recording devices, weapons and valuables at home.
  • Be aggressive & shove past people to get up front. If you want to get up close, be patient or wait until the time is right.
  • Make fun of people: whether it’s the way they look, they way they’re dress or the music they’re listening to, be nice.
  • Get upset if someone pushes you/runs into you in the crowd.
  • Drink Alcohol – especially if you’re under age. No sneaky sneaks.
  • Leave your friends behind.
  • Forget to eat, drink water & reapply sunscreen!
  • Let a negative experience or interaction ruin your day!

Want to win a FREE ticket to Warped Tour!? Comment your favorite band below in the comments & why you want to win. Bonus entries: head over to my InstagramΒ to enter again. EXTRA bonus entry: sign up for my newsletter to stay up to date! EXTRA EXTRA bonus entry: join the Revenge Posse & enter in the dedicated thread!

Shop my concert essentials:


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48 Comments

  • Reply
    Arlene (:
    June 16, 2017 at 2:16 pm

    My favorite band is pierce the veil. The reason I want to win the warped ticket is because New Year’s Day is playing warped this year again and I really wanna see them so badly. In 2015 they played warped as well but I didn’t get to see them because New Year’s Day and PTV played at the same time and well it’d be an honor to see New Year’s Day.

  • Reply
    Isis Castrejon
    June 16, 2017 at 2:17 pm

    I have four favorite bands, Pierce The Veil, Black Veil Brides, New Years Day, & Twenty One Pilots. A reason I should win would have to be I’m a big music lover. I’ve only been to Warped tour once & it was honestly the best day I’ve ever had minus not being able to see PTV, but like you said I didn’t let one bad experience ruin my day. Money is an issue for me, so to have an opportunity like this is everything for me.

  • Reply
    Ren/Rainie Averett
    June 16, 2017 at 2:25 pm

    My favorite band is Knocked Loose, an undergeound hardcore band from Oldham County, Kentucky or Lighter Burns, a very small garage punk band from San Diego! I personally would love to win because I would like to make it to see those two bands at Warped! I love music and just can’t afford the ticket currently. πŸ™‚ I am already subscribed to the newsletter!!!

    • Reply
      Erin
      June 16, 2017 at 2:28 pm

      Love Knocked Loose!

    • Reply
      Erin
      June 16, 2017 at 2:28 pm

      Also thanks for subscribing!

  • Reply
    Ren/Rainie Averett
    June 16, 2017 at 2:26 pm

    underground* aha I’m clearly terrible at typing.

  • Reply
    Maddi Greene
    June 16, 2017 at 2:32 pm

    I listen to a handful of really good bands so I don’t know which is my favorite. Probably All Time Low. I want to win a ticket to Warped this year to meet my best friend for the first time.

    • Reply
      Maddi Greene
      June 16, 2017 at 2:33 pm

      Also I am already subscribed and I love reading your blog posts. πŸ™‚

  • Reply
    Raylene
    June 16, 2017 at 2:39 pm

    My favorite band is pierce the veil, of course. I would like to win the free warped tour ticket because I want to start listening to new bands. I could listen to new bands on Spotify but what if their live shows totally suck.

  • Reply
    Taylor young
    June 16, 2017 at 2:40 pm

    My favorite band is Pierce the Veil, but since they won’t be at Warped Tour this year I really want to see I Prevail! I Prevail is another one of my favorite bands. Both bands and music in general have saved my life. Literally. It would mean a lot to me if I won the ticket.

  • Reply
    Blanca
    June 16, 2017 at 2:40 pm

    My favorite band(s) is Pierce the veil and sleeping with sirens. The reason I want to win the Warped Tour ticket is because it will be my first time going to warped tour and i also can’t afford a ticket at the moment. I really want to go see I prevail, Andy , New years Day, and many more bands, I would love to make new friends too

  • Reply
    Pamela McEvers
    June 16, 2017 at 2:46 pm

    Hi. my favorite bands are pierce the veil and Pearl jam and neck deep. I would love to win the warped tour ticket because I have tried to go for 2 years but never was able to go because some things had happened. But yes I would love to go.

  • Reply
    Kellyn
    June 16, 2017 at 3:14 pm

    My all time favorite band is ptv. I want to go to warped this year for a few reasons… i’ve gone twice before and it was so much fun and this year there are a lot of bands that i’ve recently got into and haven’t seen live before that i really want to (trophy eyes, bad omens, too close to touch) also i want to do some networking since i want to be a graphic designer for the music industry πŸ™‚

    • Reply
      Kellyn
      June 16, 2017 at 3:22 pm

      oh crap i sent it twice i thought it didn’t go through the first time sorry!!!!!

  • Reply
    Kellyn
    June 16, 2017 at 3:21 pm

    My favorite band is ptv. I would like to go to warped this year because there are a lot of bands in the lineup that i’ve recently gotten into but haven’t seen live yet (examples: trophy eyes, bad omens, too close to touch) and i’m hoping to find even more new bands to love πŸ™‚ I would also like to do some networking because i want to be a graphic designer for the music industry but i’ve been having trouble getting myself out there job-wise. I’ve gone two years in the past and i had so much fun and i would really like to go again πŸ™‚

  • Reply
    Adgre Anna
    June 16, 2017 at 3:23 pm

    My favorite bands are Beartooth, Neck Deep, and Hawthorne Heights. I’ve been fortunate enough to be able to go for the past two years in a row. It’d be an amazing opportunity to win a ticket for one of my best friends who has never been to warped tour before. She really wants to see Hawthorne Heights and I’d love to make that happen. I also subscribed to your newsletter!

  • Reply
    Carlyn Begay
    June 16, 2017 at 3:25 pm

    My Favorite Band Is I The Mighty. I Have A Lot More Favorite Bands But This Is My Top One. I Would Wanna Win Warped Tour Tickets Because I A Huge Music Lover. Mostly Rock. From Metallica To Pierce The Veil To Movements. But Many Of My Favorite Bands Have Been A Big Inspiration On Me To Start Playing Music. I’m A Self-Taught Learner. (Piano, Guitar) And Last I’ve Never Been To Warped Tour Before So It Would Be Amazing To Be Able To Go To One An Experience It.

  • Reply
    Jennifer
    June 16, 2017 at 3:27 pm

    Haven’t been to Warped Tour in a long time but this year a lot of good bands I listen to are going. One being my all time favorite, good old Dance Gavin Dance.

  • Reply
    Nora
    June 16, 2017 at 3:46 pm

    My favorite band is Pierce the veil. I really want this ticket because first of all I’m broke , and I really want to see some of those bands, especially beartooth, Attila, Andy Black, Memphis May fire ect, the list goes on haha

  • Reply
    Adriana
    June 16, 2017 at 3:46 pm

    My favorite band is Simple Plan, been a fan since the beginning and will be one til the end!!

  • Reply
    Gracelyn
    June 16, 2017 at 5:06 pm

    My favorite band literally is pierce the veil and I know that’s so annoying but it’s so true I love this band so much and I love so many other bands but pierce the veil has been and will always be my favorite band. I want to win first of all just because the small communication between me and you will be enough to make me pee myself in excitement and well, I love the warped tour and the people there are so UNBELIEVABLY NICE. I cried when I left last year because I met so many kind people and I didn’t get any of there names or contact info lol!

  • Reply
    Kayla
    June 16, 2017 at 10:46 pm

    My favorite band would either be Waterparks or All Time Low. I wanted to go to warp this year because it would be my first time and I really wanted to see Andy Black performing.

  • Reply
    Evelyne
    June 16, 2017 at 11:12 pm

    My all time favorite bands are Pierce the Veil, Green Day, Sleeping With Sirens, and All Time Low. I would love to win because I have never gone! I think it would be so fun to go and meet new people and bands and socialize! my parents are always telling me that I need to socialize because lets be honest, i never leave my room. I listen to the same 5 bands and I would love to get into some new music! I also have heard so many positive things about Warped and would just overall think ill have agood
    time. πŸ™‚

  • Reply
    Margie
    June 17, 2017 at 12:11 am

    Great tips!!! I would like to share that I guess it just depends on the venue but the one I attended they took our bottle caps to our water bottles one year. So the following year I took an empty water bottle, like a sports water bottle and just filled it up inside at the free water station. Another thing they weren’t letting people bring in sharpies, I hid mine but I would suggest to bring a pen just in case.

    • Reply
      Erin
      June 17, 2017 at 9:06 am

      Good tip!

  • Reply
    Heaven
    June 17, 2017 at 2:02 am

    My favorite band is Sylar! They are from NY and I love their music. Another favorite is Beartooth or Knocked Loose.
    I would love to win because I have never been to Warped Tour yet. It would be a fun experience to make new friends and see some of my favorite and new bands. πŸ™‚

  • Reply
    Morgan Reynolds
    June 17, 2017 at 9:12 am

    My favorite band is definitely Pierce the Veil (I’m sorry if you’ve gotten a lot of comments like this, but they just mean the world to me). Behind them, my fav is All Time Low. I would love to win because I’ve never been to Warped Tour, but I know some people that love the experience. Plus, my third favorite band, IPrevail is playing this year, and I haven’t seen them since the Made to Destroy Tou. I’m not old enough to drive yet, and my parents don’t really like IPrevail’s music, so Warped might be the only time I could see them anytime soon! πŸ™‚

  • Reply
    Carter
    June 17, 2017 at 9:14 am

    My favorite band is Of Mice & Men. I’ve been listening to them for the longest and they’ve practically saved my life. The reason why I want to go to Warped is every time I try to go, something happens to me (ex. I get sick, I don’t have enough money/I don’t have a ride) I’ve been trying to go to Warped for the past few years now and i’ve always failed.

  • Reply
    Carter
    June 17, 2017 at 9:14 am

    My favorite band is Of Mice & Men. I’ve been listening to them for the longest and they’ve practically saved my life. The reason why I want to go to Warped is every time I try to go, something happens to me (ex. I get sick, I don’t have enough money/I don’t have a ride) I’ve been trying to go to Warped for the past few years now and i’ve always failed.

    • Reply
      Carter
      June 17, 2017 at 9:15 am

      i accidentally sent it twice, i thought it didn’t go through. my bad!!

  • Reply
    Kiara
    June 17, 2017 at 9:53 am

    Hands down favorite band is Pierce the Veil. They’ve helped me through so much. Also I’d want to win because it’s always been something I’ve wanted to go to, and my family can’t afford it at the moment. It’s always “not this year,” or “it’s not in the budget,” so winning a free ticket would be amazing

  • Reply
    Gianna Sumi
    June 17, 2017 at 10:05 am

    My favorite bands are Pierce the veil, avenged sevenfold,bad religion, NOFX,simple plan and Metallica. The reason I want to win is because every time there is a concert I want to go to my parents don’t have enough money and the first concert I was supposed to go to my stepdad gave the tickets I bought to my cousin

  • Reply
    Megan
    June 17, 2017 at 10:07 am

    My favorite band is either Waterparks or Pierce The Veil. The reason why I want to win is because one of my other favorite bands, Neck Deep is going to be there and I love them so much and also Warped 2016 was one of the best times of my life and I would love to go again

  • Reply
    Maggie
    June 17, 2017 at 10:28 am

    My favorite band is Pierce The Veil, so sad that they are not playing this year. I have never seen them live before. The reason I want to win the warped ticket is that I’m broke and I really want to see Andy Black, New Year’s Day, and Memphis May fire. Thanks for your time.

  • Reply
    Ashley
    June 17, 2017 at 10:49 am

    Well who is my favorite band ever? Pierce The Veil! They’re pretty darn cool, but sadly not playing Warped this year, but no worries!

    The reason I think I deserve a lovely ticket is because to me Music is life. Sounds cliche right? No matter what type or what sound, im interested in it. Also I would like to finally meet a few great artists, because last time I went to warped, I had a really bad fever so I only stayed for Ptv and had to leave since i was so sick (aaand Tony wasn’t even there *cries)

    ALSO PLEASE STAY HYDRATED YOU GUYS. THE HEAT WILL DEFINITELY GET TO YOU AFTER ALL THOSE HOURS IN THE SUN. STAY SAFE!

  • Reply
    Maggie
    June 17, 2017 at 10:51 am

    My favorite band is Pierce The Veil. So sad that they are not playing this year, I have never seen them live before. The reason why I want to win is because I’m broke and I want to hear new bands live, cause that’s what I’m good at I love concerts. I’d rather chose a concert than a party anytime. Concerts are the way why them make me feel comfortable. I really want to see new bands like New Year’s Day, Memphis May fire, and Andy black!! Thanks for your time!!

  • Reply
    Tori
    June 17, 2017 at 11:03 am

    Trying to come up with a favorite band was very difficult since I listen to way too many! if i had to pick one of the bands playing warped tour that i’ve been dying to see, that would most definitely be Sylar. Hands down one of my favorite bands & sadly one I have not seen live yet! I would love to win a ticket to the San Diego date for my best friend because she has never been to Warped Tour before and I would love to surprise her to make it one of the best days ever! She’s been nothing but a good friend to me since day one and I want to do something nice for her!

  • Reply
    Gloria
    June 17, 2017 at 11:29 am

    My favorite band is Borns and I want to win because I want to have new experiences and it’s good to start early I’m fourteen and I just want to have the best summer ever and I want to do crazy stuff so that is why I want a warped tour ticket and its fine if I don’t win but it wouldn’t hurt to try

  • Reply
    Sol
    June 17, 2017 at 12:29 pm

    My favorite band is PTV! The reason I’d like to win is because I currently don’t have enough money since I’m moving and my friends and I are trying to find a way to get my ticket for warped and go as a “goodbye party” thing for me. Good luck to all who entered xx I also am subscribed (:

  • Reply
    Bella Arrants
    June 17, 2017 at 2:07 pm

    Pierce The Veil and Ice Nine Kills are my favorite bands. My boyfriend introduced me to PTV and a close friend to INK. I would love to go to Warped Tour because it would be my first time going to a concert type thing in general and it seems amazing. I want to see Andy Black perform and several bands. I just feel going to Warped would really make my summer a lot better!

  • Reply
    Yajahira Garcia
    June 17, 2017 at 2:28 pm

    My favorite bands a Pierce The Veil, Sleeping With Sirens,All Time Low, this would be the first time i ever gone , i would really like to have an opportunity to go and meet my favorite bands it’s like a dream come true to me

  • Reply
    Priscilla E.
    June 17, 2017 at 5:55 pm

    my favorite band is waterparks and i would really like to win the ticket to warped because I’ve missed lots of opportunities lately to see the bands on this years warped and it’s all just because I couldn’t afford !! so this would give me a chance to take a good opportunity and be able to go this year because me and my sister wanna go and we can only afford one ticket !! thank you ❀️

  • Reply
    Alissa encarnacion
    June 17, 2017 at 6:09 pm

    my all time favorite band is bayside! i would love to win a ticket because there are a lot of bands i would love to see this yr that i missed on tour! it would be my very first time going, and i haven’t bought a ticket bc i couldn’t afford two me and my sister want to go together so if i win this i would only have to buy one ticket which we could afford so this is an amazing opportunity honestly and i would also get the chance to meet some of my internet bestftiends who are going! also this is a great article!

  • Reply
    Alissa encarnacion
    June 17, 2017 at 6:10 pm

    i hope i didn’t post my reply multiple times i clicked on it like 3 times bc it wouldn’t load so im sorry if i did!

  • Reply
    Erica Santos
    June 17, 2017 at 7:01 pm

    My favorite band is Sleeping With Sirens , Bring Me The Horizon, and Pierce The Veil because those were the first bands that got me into this type of music and they’ve helped through so much as well. Along with so many other bands. The reason I want to win is because I can’t afford to buy my own ticket and I would love to see one of my idols Andy Black.

  • Reply
    Maya
    June 17, 2017 at 10:05 pm

    I genuinely love almost every band I listen to. My favorite band currently is probably Boston Manor. They are so amazing and you should check them out ! Going to warped this year will give me the opportunity to meet new people, have fun, and see new upcoming bands I’ve never seen before. Since I’ve never been to warped, I’m really hoping to go this year, and if i win this i might be able to! Thank you ! πŸ™‚

  • Reply
    gloria Loeza
    June 18, 2017 at 9:07 am

    My favorite band is borns and I would like to win the ticket because I want to try new thing and going to warped tour is wanna the cool things I want to do this summer but I don’t have the mind and it’s fine if I don’t win but it wouldn’t hurt to try

  • Reply
    Esmeralda
    June 18, 2017 at 9:40 pm

    My favorite band (at the moment) is Underoath. Going to warped tour, it would be Hawthrone Heights and CKY. πŸ™‚

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