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Amid the stampede of festival announcements that occured over the past three months, we’ve now reached the part of the year where it’s time to actually pack some bags and coordinate a plan (take it from personal experience — you should never head out to a fest without a plan). One of the first major music festivals of the year is coming up fast, too: hip-hop fest Rolling Loud Miami.
The 2021 fest is Rolling Loud’s first in two years, after postponing the 2020 event due to Covid-19. With stir-crazy fans scrambling to secure tickets after a year quarantine, it was hard to see it then get pushed back yet again from May of this year to July.
But Rolling Loud is rolling ahead, and though we’ve shared our tips before for what to pack for your first post-vaxx concert (especially if you’re a little rusty with this whole “festival crammed with thousands of hot, sweaty people” thing), we’ve got some specific info to make your festival comeback at Rolling Loud as memorable (and easy) as possible.
How to Buy Tickets for Rolling Loud Miami 2021
Before you can even start figuring out parking, how many bottles of sunscreen is too many, and what a “festival-approved bag” means, you’re going to need the tickets in hand (or more likely these days, on your phone).
While limited tickets for Rolling Loud went on sale in April on its official site, don’t panic and go to a sketchy website or hit up your cousin who totally “knows a guy” for tickets. Vivid Seats is the place to buy Rolling Loud Miami tickets online, with everything available from three-day passes, single-day tickets, VIP tickets, and even festival parking passes.
What if you have tickets from 2020 that’ve been gathering virtual dust for a year? The good news is that Rolling Loud will honor all passes for Miami 2020 tickets and will grant refunds to ticket holders no longer able to attend.
Rolling Loud Miami 2021 Lineup and Basic Info
So now that you’ve got your passes secure, here’s the low-down on the 2021 festival. First off, the event will be taking place over three days, from July 23rd to 25th at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, Florida. One silver lining to the rescheduled event: Many performers who were originally booked to perform at last year’s installment are set to perform at the 2021 festival.
A$AP Rocky, Travis Scott, and Post Malone will headline, with the fest also featuring Megan Thee Stallion, Rick Ross, Lil Baby, 21 Savage, Young Thug, DaBaby, Lil Uzi Vert, Playboi Carti, and “special guest” Bobby Shmurda.
Gucci Mane, T-Pain, Kodak Black, Tyga, Gunna, Swae Lee, Roddy Ricch, Jack Harlow, City Girls, Rod Wave, Don Toliver, Lil Durk, Nav, Polo G, Sheck Wes, Bfb Da Packman, Ski Mask the Slump God, Curren$y, Fetty Wap, Chief Keef, Wale, Lil Tjay, Lil Yachty, Young Dolph, and Rico Nasty also round out the expansive, 130-artist lineup. As of right now, there’s unfortunately no site map or set times up on the site, but those will be released soon.
Unlike other festivals, such as Lollapalooza, you won’t have to require proof of vaccination or a negative Covid-19 test to attend Rolling Loud Miami. In accordance with local and state laws, face masks are also not mandatory at the festival, however to decrease the risk of spreading Covid-19, masks are encouraged for everyone (as is getting fully vaccinated before you go).
What to Bring to Rolling Loud Miami 2021
Even with concert venues and live-music festivals across the country are slowly returning, safety measures and venue layout switch-ups may mean a few changes to what you can bring. But we’ve got you covered from bags to earplugs and everything beyond — here’s what we recommend you pack for Rolling Loud Miami, all festival-approved in accordance with their 2021 guidelines.
1. Clear Festival Crossbody Bag
Festival rules about bags oftentimes widely vary from venue to venue, so it’s best to check beforehand so you don’t show up at the gates and get any confiscated.
Rolling Loud Miami requires that bags be made from clear plastic, vinyl, or PVC and don’t exceed 12″ x 6″ x 12.” While you can bring in small clutch bags, we like this Adidas crossbody bag because it’s made specifically with festivals in mind. It’s compact enough to keep all your essentials like keys, phone, and extra cash secure with two zip pockets and an adjustable strap. It’s also lightweight and stylish enough that you’ll want to wear it even after the stage lights go down.
Besides bags for your valuables, Rolling Loud will also allow one-gallon clear plastic bags (like Ziploc) for all your snackage needs, and a clear plastic hydration pack (empty upon entry). The latter is honestly a little hard to find, so you can always get a hydration reservoir (or “bladder”) and put it in a see-through approved bag.
2. KN95 Face Mask
Even as major music festivals in the U.S. request or suggest that you still wear a mask, that doesn’t mean your fellow attendees will always follow social distancing and mask protocols. It’s true that Rolling Loud takes place in an open-air arena, but you should still attempt to maintain a reasonable distance from your fellow concertgoers (save the crowd surfing for another time). Even if you’re vaccinated, that doesn’t mean there’s zero risk, so we still suggest you pick up a good, rugged face covering that can hold up to standing outdoors in the hot and humid Florida air for hours.
One of our favorite protective face masks is this KN95 mask from BlueBear. It stands out from other disposable masks because it has four fluid-resistant layers that filter 95 percent of particles for up to 12 hours. The mask itself is lightweight and breathable, making it super gentle if you’re going to be showing up for the entire weekend-long event (although, if you want something more sustainable, Blue Bear also has great reusable masks).
3. GoPro Action Camera
Nowadays, venues get pretty particular with what kind of cameras they’ll let you take in, even if the tech on your phone lets you get some pretty good shots. Rolling Loud Miami’s rules say nothing “professional,” but what does that mean? Normally that refers to a camera with a removable lens, or with a standard lens longer than two inches. But if you don’t want to risk the memory of a lifetime getting ruined by an unintentionally grainy, blurred-out zoom picture from your phone, a point-and-shoot or action camera is your best bet.
We’re going to recommend the HERO9 here, which is GoPro’s best action camera to date — if you need a portable way to capture your festival experience with the least amount of effort, this is the one you should get. The HERO9 shoots in crystal-clear 5K at 30 fps (frames per second), and with HyperSmooth 3.0, the newest version of GoPro’s image-stabilization technology, you’ll get actual usable footage when you’re being jostled around by a raging crowd.
The camera also has SuperPhoto, which allows for more accurate colors and for lighting to look as accurate as possible, and Hindsight, which constantly records the past 30 seconds of whatever you’re doing, so you won’t miss any important parts of the set you’re recording.
4. Hand Sanitizer
There’s no guarantee that you’re going to have easy access to running water and soap on-hand, and hand-sanitizing stations might be scattered around too far for you to reach in a pinch. To keep germs and viruses at bay, Rolling Loud will allow you to bring along some bottles of hand sanitizer: This spray-on Hand and Surface Cleaning mist by Purophy kills some of the most common germs without the extra goopy mess.
Suitable for both your hands and to disinfect surfaces, the mist is made with 70 percent alcohol to exceed CDC recommendations by 10 percent. It also contains all-natural aloe vera to help soothe sun-kissed skin. Stock up before you go with their six-pack, which includes three spray bottles and three mini refill bottles. If you’re worried about looking suspicious trying to bring in a bunch of mini-bottles of a clear liquid, a pack of disinfecting baby wipes will also do the trick (and are perfectly acceptable to bring).
5. Phone Juice Pack
Rolling Loud will actually have portable battery packs that you can preorder on their website and pick up when you get to the festival. But if you don’t want to keep making runs back to the Electric Standard booth every time your battery runs out of energy, having a juice pack, or one of our top portable chargers, is a great way to ensure you won’t run out of life while in the middle of taking concert photos or trying to call your friends.
Mophie’s battery charging cases are conveniently attached to your phone at all times, so you’ll never set it down and forget it, or have to exchange it for another battery. They’re some of the most reliable out there, since they can extend your phone’s battery life by up to 35 percent all day, and prevent the panic moment of forgetting your charging cable at home.
6. UV-Blocking Sunglasses
No more squinting to see the stage with the afternoon sun beating down on you. While you can pick up sunglasses from any corner store on your way there, if you’re going to spend a lot of time in the sun, you’ll want lenses that can protect your eyes the same way a good sunblock would for your skin. Wearing sunglasses are also an easy way to get you to stop rubbing your eyes, something that can spread germs to your face.
These Garrett Leight Navarre Sunglasses recently made our top Summer Essentials guide, thanks to their anti-reflective, UV-blocking lenses and built-in nose pads for long-wearing style. With three different color ways and a gently rounded design, these glasses will go along with any festival-ready outfit that we know you’ve been planning weeks in advance.
7. Water Bottle
Hydration is a must, full-stop, no questions asked. Lucky for you, Rolling Loud Miami is letting you bring in one empty, plastic reusable water bottle per person. While unfortunately you won’t get the day-long, icy-cold crisp water you’d get from, say, a Hydro Flask, you’re allowed a (up to) 32-ounce bottle, which is a hearty amount to keep you well-hydrated.
This BPA-free plastic bottle from CamelBak is a worthy contender, with a straw cap with 25 percent more flow per sip that will make it easier for you to drink water while walking the festival grounds instead of having to unscrew a cap every time you get parched. But it’s still spill-proof when open, and leakproof while closed. Bonus: Reviews also say it actually feels lighter to carry around than the coveted Hydro Flask while full.
If you want to vibe out to Rolling Loud’s lineup without suffering from that ringing in your ears for days afterward, protecting your hearing is as important as packing the best sunscreen.
Consider springing for these high-fidelity earplugs from Vibes, which are designed with live music in mind. These earplugs reduce damaging decibel levels in noisy areas without hurting sound quality, so you won’t have to sit through a muffled version of your favorite songs. Made of form-fitting silicone, these are also more comfortable (and less bulky) than typical earplugs.
What not to bring: Rolling Loud has an extensive list of what’s banned from the fest on their website, but some notable exclusions are canned sunblocks, blankets, beach towels, chairs, coolers, glass or metal containers, steel water bottles, outside food or beverages, tents, tarps, and umbrellas.
How to Stay Safe at Rolling Loud Miami
You might be anxious getting back to being sweaty around thousands of strangers for the first time, and your concern would not be unfounded. According to CovidActNow, though Miami-Dade County currently has a 68.9 percent vaccination rate (of at least one dose), the Covid-19 risk level is classified as being “very high” right now. That being said, if you’re currently vaccinated, you have a much higher protection level than someone unvaccinated. Travel is explicitly discouraged unless you are vaccinated.
Harm reduction is the name of the game here, and there are steps you can take to make sure that you lower your risk. First thing’s first, you should make sure it’s been two weeks since your second dose of the Pfizer, Moderna, or Johnson & Johnson vaccine before traveling to Rolling Loud. Continue masking up if you’re going to be tightly packed in next to others for a long time, like an artist’s full set. Try to maintain your distance while you’re walking the grounds, since the rate of infection is lower when you’re outside and moving around.
But Covid-19 isn’t the only health concern with going to a big festival, since you might have to contend with the usual incidents that come along, like sunburns, heat exhaustion, cuts, burns, food poisoning, etc. Rolling Loud Miami will have several first-aid locations with professional medical staff throughout the venue; find out where on the mobile app or map. If you do get sick, you’re just a few miles away from some regional hospitals, including Memorial Regional Hospital, Kindred Hospital South Florida, and Jackson North Medical Center.
One way to give yourself some reassurance is with a little travel insurance: AXA Assistance USA is a service we like that provides coverage so you can prepare for the unexpected. Their insurance plans, depending on the tier, can include benefits such as trip cancellation, emergency medical expenses, accidental injuries and illness coverage, and baggage delays to help give you peace of mind before and during your festival excursion. You can get a quote or file a claim on their website here.
No matter how you pack and prepare yourself, the most important thing to remember is to get out there and make some memories: Rolling Loud Miami only comes once a year, after all.