How to Spend All Your Money at Festivals

 Photo Credit: flatworldsedge via Compfight cc
Photo Credit: flatworldsedge via Compfight cc

It’s summertime and there are festivals every weekend. Oof…I did something I shouldn’t have done and went to two festivals this weekend alone. One was on Saturday and one was on Sunday. I blew a lot of money at both of these events and there are lots of things I wish I didn’t do or did before I went. I stuffed myself with all sorts of food and am now detoxing this week with some light “diet” food. My purse definitely got slimmer after this weekend was over. This is what loving food can do to you! It’s hard for me to say no to food.

Saturday night I went to the 626 Night Market. Los Angeles’ own Asian night market! It’s the thing to do when you’re in Asia, but the United States has never really had many. Last year this night market started up small and was entirely overwhelmed by the amount of people that came. They had only set up on a small side street with about 20 booths placed across from each other. Another small area had some food booths. Since night markets are famous for people of all ages, everyone went. Grandmas, grandpas, toddlers, teens, and all ages in between showed up! It was truly like being in Asia with how packed it became. Since then it’s gotten much bigger and much more organized. I went with a group of 6 and we ended up eating nonstop for 5 hours. We eventually had steamed fried buns, chicken skewers, takoyaki, okonomiyaki, squid, stinky tofu, egg waffles, fluff ice, fried chicken, sausage sandwiches, rice balls, and donuts! That night alone we spent $55 for the two of us.

Sunday it was off to the Long beach crawfish festival! Another festival full of food! This was definitely the pricier one where we ended up spending $86 for two people. Tickets were $28 for admission and a 2 pound crawfish feast. We had some other Southern staples like alligator, frog legs, and beignets too! I also got a nice sunburn too…for free!

We definitely spent a lot of money this weekend…looking back I see ways we could’ve saved some money. Read on so you don’t do what I did!

Space out the festivals
We made the big mistake of going to two festivals in one weekend! We should’ve tried to space them out so that we didn’t end up spending so much in one weekend. We enjoyed going to both, but we wouldn’t have been left with such a heavy feeling after everything. Festivals are always pricey and you can spend a lot of money even if you’re trying not to.

Check for local deals before buying tickets
When we arrived to the crawfish festival we found out that there had been an Amazon local deal. Too bad we bought the tickets online. For a bigger festival that costs admission to get in you should check to see if any deal sites are offering discount admission.

Buy tickets online and ahead of time
We bought our tickets online and saved a few dollars off the Sunday festival. Many festivals do have online deals or coupons you can present in person. Every little bit helps!

Set a limit for yourself
We didn’t do this, but I wish we did! If we had just set aside a certain amount of money for each festival then we could’ve controlled ourselves a bit better. We didn’t set any limits going on so spent freely. Very much the opposite of what we usually do every day! We got caught up in the festival atmosphere and our money went bye bye.

Check out every booth before spending money
There are a few items I wish I had stopped to look at the quality of food coming out. Some booths are manned by untrained workers that are only there for the night. Others overcharge you and give you old food. Next time I’ll take more time to check out every booth to make the best decision possible. The alligator and frog legs I bought on Sunday were overpriced and weren’t great. Later on I found a booth selling other items with lower prices and freshly made food. There was no food lying out already made and you could see them making everything fresh. It was also a mom and pop booth! Literally! An older married husband and wife were the only two running the booth. That’s the one I should’ve spent my money on!

Resist the temptation to buy just because you’re at a festival
I did well on this one. Festivals always have retail booth with cute t’s and other items. Many booths don’t have a storefront and only have an online store. It makes people feel like they need to buy things right then and there. There were some pretty cute t’s, but I resisted on this at least.

Bring your own water
Your bag will get checked usually when you go through the entrance, but usually they allow you to bring your own reusable bottle. Bottled water is not allowed generally because they sell it inside. It helps save a bit of money since you don’t have to buy super overpriced water.


Festivals are a lot of fun, but definitely suck up your money! Have fun if you go, but as for me I’ll try not to spend as much next time around.

What summer festivals have you been going to?

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