A Local’s Guide To Surviving ACL Music Festival

Whether you’re an ACL old-timer or testing the waters for the first time, there are many ways that festival-goers can maximize their experience. Here are a few of our tried and true tips to make sure you have the best time at Austin City Limits Music Festival this year.


Portable charger

ACL is a good time, but it is also a long time- at least a lot longer than your phone’s battery can last after a day full of taking photos and videos. Most portable chargers are reasonably small and can last for multiple uses, meaning you and your group can share. The credit card sized device will be your best friend when you realize you just crowd surfed your way to the front row without your friends and a dead phone.


It’s Texas, ya’ll, which means it is still H-O-T and sunny in October. Don’t let the chilly mornings or cloudy skies fool you, you need to wear sunscreen all weekend. And don’t forget to re-apply.

Reusable water bottle

Save yourself the hassle of waiting in line to purchase a bottle of water and BYOB. You are allowed to bring an empty reusable water bottle upon entry which can be refilled for free at any of the water stations around the festival grounds.

Comfortable shoes

Austin is a city full of people who take risks with fashion, and ACL is no exception. Although you may want to look great in your next Instagram post, you won’t be very comfortable after hours of standing and walking. Wear sneakers or sandals that will let you enjoy your time rather than looking for somewhere to sit.

ACL Cashless

With your ACL wristband, you no longer need to carry around cash or credit cards. Simply upload your information to the wristband before you arrive and you can pay for anything with the tap of your wrist. This is great for ensuring you don’t lose anything valuable, but make sure you remember to bring your ID if you plan on purchasing alcohol.

Know your way home

Beat the crowds by mapping out your route home ahead of time. This might include choosing the best ride sharing pick-up location, knowing where your bus route stops, or remembering where you parked your car or bike.



Arriving prepared is the best way to ensure you enjoy every second of Austin City Limits Music Festival. Check out the line up and festival map here.