Summer’s officially on its way, which means that festival season is here! New York City is a metropolis that’s constantly bumpin’ with new events and things to do, and this year is no exception. From the iconic Governors Ball in the heart of the city, to Elements Arts & Music Festival being just a few hours’ drive away, there’s a festival near NYC for every kind of music lover. Whether you’re into electronic music or prefer light rock, the best way to get to your music festival is by NYC shuttle bus.
Follow this guide for everything you need to know about this year’s NYC Festival Season.
Things to organize before the festival
We know you’re excited to get the party going, but you’ve got a few things to take care of before festival kickoff. Keep these things in mind pre-festival so that you can enjoy your experience to the fullest.
Get your group together
Round up the crew! Make sure that you know who you’ll be traveling to the festival with, and who you’ll be partying with throughout the festival weekend. The buddy system exists for a reason, and will help to keep everyone safe, happy, and having a great time from the time you board your bus to your bus trip back home.
Finalize your gear & outfits
Whether you’re into neon raves or indie festivals, it’s imperative for every fashionable festival goer to plan out their looks ahead of time. You never know, you could just make it to the front row of one of the festival headliners – you have to be able to make an impression if you’re front and center on a band’s Insta story!
No matter your personal style, we highly encourage you to bring a small backpack or add a fanny pack to your ensemble. This way, you’ll keep all of your essentials together (cash, phone, keys, ID) without having to do that awkward self-pat down every five minutes making sure you’ve still got all of your stuff.
Pro Tip: Invest in a Tile. This handy little gadget keeps tabs on your items via GPS, so just in case you do happen to misplace your wallet or keys, you’ll be able to track them down stress-free.
Book your shuttle bus seat
Right – getting there. The further in advance you book your shuttle bus seat to your festival, the better. Why? Mainly because it’s one more thing checked off of your to-do list, and also guarantees your peace of mind instead of scrambling to find a last-minute ride to the site. Once your shuttle bus seat is booked, be sure to spread the word to your other festival friends so that you can all ride together on the same bus!
Is a shuttle bus the best way to get to a music festival?
In a short explanation: absolutely. There is no simpler way to get to a remote, unfamiliar location than with a shuttle bus, and let’s face it: many music festivals aren’t exactly convenient to get to. With a shuttle bus, not only do you not have to do any of the driving, but any possibility of taking the wrong highway exit and getting lost is eliminated thanks to Bus.com’s experienced and reliable bus drivers. They’re used to navigating foreign terrain, so you’ll be able to get to your festival in a jiffy. Oh, and you don’t have to worry about parking. Bonus!
All shuttle coach buses come equipped with A/C (perfect for beating the heat and keeping your glittery face paint from clumping) and enough undercarriage storage to stow away all of your festival gear – tents and camping accessories included. Sure, you’ll likely have your own crew of friends on the bus with you, but one of the best parts about snagging a rideshare seat is that you get to meet new people. Everyone on your rideshare shuttle bus is headed to the same festival as you, so chances are you’ll have plenty in common. You might even make some concert buds during the experience!
A sprinter van rental is also a great way to get your group from point A to point B, especially if your crew is under 15 people. Bus.com offers luxury sprinter van rentals in the Greater New York Area that can even be driven by a member of your group.
Pick a festival (or two, or three…)
Now comes the fun part: choosing which festivals you’re going to pencil into your wild summer schedule. Here are the top music festival picks around NYC for 2019.
Include dates, music genre, headliners, defining features of the festival, how long it takes to get to the festival from downtown NYC.
The Governors Ball Music Festival
Even if you’re not New York born-and-bred, you’ve definitely heard about Governors Ball through the grapevine. Taking place May 31 to June 2 at Randall’s Island Park, grab your ticket to see internationally-renowned acts like Florence and the Machine, Lil Wayne, Major Lazer, The 1975, The Strokes, Kaytranada… I can go on and on.
Elements Music & Arts Festival
Who’s up for a road trip?! Trust us, Elements Music & Arts Festival is well worth the drive. Happening in Lakewood, PA from May 24–27, hop on a downtown NYC shuttle bus and travel with your buds stress-free to Elements for an unforgettable weekend. Headliners this year include Disclosure, Damian Lazarus, Sofi Tukker, and more. This festival has a summer camp kind of vibe, with tons of activities to keep you busy during the day before partying all through the night.
Electric Zoo 2019
If you’re into EDM, this is the festival you have to check out. Happening August 30–September 1, get ready for a jam-packed weekend with performances by Armin Van Buren, Benny Benassi, Diplo, Zedd, and tons more. Electric Zoo takes place at Randall’s Island (just like The Governors Ball), so it’s just a quick bus ride away.
Billboard Hot 100 Music Festival
Billboard needs no introduction, so let me get right to it: this festival will be bringing together some of the hottest chart-toppers to Long Island from August 18–19. This year’s headliners include Halsey, DJ Snake, Future, French Montana, and more.
Taking place at the ever-popular Randall’s Island in NYC, Panorama presents some of the biggest names in popular music with this year’s lineup, including the Weeknd, Migos, The XX, The Killers, and more. While Bus.com isn’t official transportation partners with Panorama Festival this year, check back with us for next year’s event!
Excited yet? Check out our Guide to Festival Going for the complete guide on how to prep for your upcoming music festivals!