What Bags to Bring (& What to Pack In Them) For Every Music Festival

Katie Decker-Jacoby
What Bags to Bring (& What to Pack In Them) For Every Music Festival
Photo: Wild Fable; Urban Outfitters; Fjällräven; Forever 21. Design: Sasha Purdy/StyleCaster.

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Arguably the trickiest part about picking your festival OOTD is the bag. You can wear whatever shirt, dress or shoes you want, but the same can’t be said of your bag. Each festival has different policies, whether it’s clear bags only or super tiny purses that can hardly fit the essentials.

Luckily, you don’t have to compromise on style, since there are actually tons of bags that’ll look great with any outfit, fit your festival necessities and comply with bag policies.

Here’s a quick breakdown for each major music festival this summer: 

  • Coachella: handbags, backpacks, fanny packs, purses and totes can be no bigger than 20” x 15” x 9”
  • Governors Ball: clear bags can be no bigger than 12” x 6” x 12” and small clutch-type bags can be no bigger than 4.5” x 6.5” 
  • Lollapalooza: small clutch purses and fanny packs that aren’t clear can be no bigger than 4.5” x 5.5”, but can only have one pocket; bags any bigger must be clear and made of clear plastic, vinyl or PVC and can’t be bigger than 12” x 12” x 6”; backpacks and bags with multiple pockets aren’t allowed
  • Outside Lands: backpacks and bags bigger than 6” x 8” x 3” must be made of clear plastic, clear vinyl or PVC; small bags, fanny packs and purses that aren’t clear can be no bigger than 6” x 8” x 3”

First, here are three items you should pack for the best festival experience possible.

Supergoop! Unseen Sunscreen

Photo: Supergoop!

SPF is an absolute must every single day, but especially when you’re baking under the sun at a music festival. Be sure to reapply throughout the day to avoid getting a nasty sunburn. Unseen Sunscreen by Supergoop! is a great option, since it’s lightweight and offers broad-spectrum SPF 40 protection. On top of shielding your skin from harmful UV rays, it also grips your makeup as a primer. If Lady Gaga approves, it must be good enough to wear to a festival.

Miady Portable Chargers Amazon

Photo: Miady.

The desert doesn’t have outlets, but we know you’re going to want to post to your Instagram stories non-stop. In comes your new best friend, a portable charger. Slip this compact power bank into your bag along with a charging cable. It comes in a two-pack, so you can even give one to your travel buddy.

Evolvetogether Black KN95 Masks

Photo: Evolvetogether.

Unfortunately, due to large crowds, there are so many germs floating around at music festivals. To avoid getting sick at an event that’s supposed to be good vibes only, be sure to pack a face mask. This set of five is perfect because everyone could use a backup or two.

Now, for the fun part, find 12 bag options for the four major music festivals so that you can enjoy your experience without worrying about getting stopped at security or packing the wrong bags.

RELATED: 10 Festival Fashion Trends That Deserve A Headlining Spot In Your Coachella Lineup


Dagne Dover Mara Phone Sling

Photo: Dagne Dover.

Dagne Dover Mara Phone Sling

To our surprise, Coachella actually has the laxest bag policy of the bunch. Because you have the most freedom in bag choices for this festival, go for the Mara Phone Sling from Dagne Dover. You can fit all of the basics, like your phone, cards, lip balm and sunscreen. 

Fjällräven High Coast Pocket Pack Sling Bag Urban Outfitters

Photo: Fjällräven.

Fjällräven High Coast Pocket Pack Sling Bag

Is this not the cutest little bag ever? Slip your essentials into this tiny pouch and don’t forget to fill the handy front pocket!

Free People Movement Mini Hiker Pack

Photo: Free People Movement.

Free People Movement Mini Hiker Pack

If you’re not a huge fanny pack wearer, go for this mini backpack. It’s teeny-tiny, but still fits all of your necessities. The cherry on top? This pack has adjustable straps! Thank goodness because comfort is key at any festival.

Governors Ball 

Wild Fable Value Crossbody Bag Target

Photo: Wild Fable.

Wild Fable Value Crossbody Bag 

Crossbody lovers should opt for this simple yet chic option from Target. Pick from five great colorways, though we’d suggest going with a pop of color. 

Bex Crochet Crossbody Pouch Urban Outfitters

Photo: Urban Outfitters.

Bex Crochet Crossbody Pouch

You can’t go wrong with a dainty crochet bag and this crossbody pouch is adorable. If you’re only packing your phone, cards and keys, your decision is easy.  

Doughnut Macaroon Tiny Gamescape Series Crossbody Bag

Photo: Doughnut.

Doughnut Macaroon Tiny Gamescape Series Crossbody Bag

Calling all e-boys and e-girls, we found your perfect festival bag. It features an internal padded phone compartment and a detachable and adjustable crossbody strap.


Covax Clear Crossbody Bag Amazon

Photo: Covax.

Covax Clear Crossbody Bag

Lollapalooza, by far, has the strictest rules for bags that aren’t clear. It’s hard to find even a belt bag that could adhere to the festival’s policy. When in doubt, grab a classic clear crossbody like this one. 

Forever 21 Transparent Crossbody Bag

Photo: Forever 21.

Forever 21 Transparent Crossbody Bag 

Throw this clear crossbody bag over your shoulder at your next music festival. It has a flap top and a buckled closure that’s timeless. 

Outside Lands 

Wild Fable Fanny Pack Target

Photo: Wild Fable.

Wild Fable Fanny Pack

This no-frills fanny pack checks off all our boxes. It’s simple, adjustable and the perfect size. Plus, since it’s a fanny pack, you can wear it slung over your shoulder or around your waist. Many say it’s an amazing dupe for Lululemon’s Everywhere Belt Bag.

Everlane The Cactus Leather Mini Sling Bag

Photo: Everlane.

Everlane The Cactus Leather Mini Sling Bag

For a more dressed-up option, try Everlane’s vegan leather sling bag. Its slip pockets will fit your phone and cards perfectly, and the adjustable strap will make sure you have a comfy, secure fit.

Adidas Originals Festival Crossbody Bag Amazon

Photo: Adidas.

Adidas Originals Festival Crossbody Bag 

If your festival aesthetic this year is more street style-inspired, this Adidas crossbody bag will complete your ’fits.

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