Festivals and alcohol go hand in hand like chemo patients and bandanas, and unfortunately, those in charge of setting the bar prices are fully aware of this and often abuse their power to leave us splashing out €5+ for a third of a pint of beer so watery it wouldn’t topple a toddler. The result of this extortionate money grabbing is a tradition as old as time itself: sneaking booze into festivals. Indeed, the first recorded incident of this was at the Last Supper where Paul snuck in a hip flask of Jäger cos Jesus was being stingy and making them all share one cup of wine. I mean, come on, the dude can turn water into wine and still can’t sort out a bottle?? So ever since then, this right of passage has been tried by everyone from popes to peasants, with varied results. We at Stoke have done more than our fair share so here’s some of our top tips and tricks for defeating security in this never-ending battle for our right to reasonably priced drinks.
If you’ve heard of it, chances are the security team has too. We’re well past emptying out Sprite bottles and refilling them with our favourite tipple, everybody knows that trick. It’s even getting to the stage where emptying Pringles cans or hollowing out a loaf of bread only yield about 30% positive results, generally leaving you stumbling for a poorly thought out excuse involving extreme over cooking and “extra thick crusts” to justify why your loaf of bread weighs three times more than it should. Nowadays, you’ll have to step your game up a bit to enjoy that sweet taste of success cut with tequila.
Backpacks over Suitcases:
Sure it’s convenient to be able to trundle around with your little wheeled case, and to be able to flip it open and have easy access to all your undies is great, but it’s that same easy access that will hamstring you when you’ve substituted undies for vodka bottles. A large backpack however, will almost never get searched as that would involve taking literally everything out to get to the bottom. Instead security just generally pat down the sides for any bottle shaped objects so as long as it’s buried deep and wrapped in socks, you should be as happy as Larry. Sidenote, who the fuck is Larry, and why is he always so happy? The only Larry I knew was my high school principal and he was a miserable bastard. With a name like Larry, what’s to be happy about? It should be changed to happy as Barry, I’ve never met a sad Barry. Good ol’ Bazza, always down for a good time.
The benefit of capitalism is that where demand exists, eventually someone will supply. There are now wide variety of items available specifically for the booze sneaking professional, ranging from umbrellas, to hair brushes, to binoculars. However, for the money it costs to acquire one of these items, you might as well just fork out the extra cash for festival drinks. Drones work well too, but are expensive, high risk, and can’t carry that much booze. In terms of cost effective, versatile, booze smuggling technology, there is one thing that is invaluable: ziplock bags. Decant your bevvies into these and stick them literally anywhere you can think of; under your hat, in your bra, or in your sleeping bag. There is a definite spillage risk however, so like a $10 hooker, double bagging is recommended.
Yea you could get your Jack Sparrow on and go to the festival site three weeks in advance and bury a heap of rum to dig up once the festival has started, but ain’t nobody got time for that! Realistically, your options are chucking stuff over the fence (two-person operation) or if you’re lucky enough to be camping by a body of water, swimming stuff in. Now, swimming across a lake with 10 litres of home brew wine sounds harder than it actually is but there are still several potential hazards. Firstly, generally speaking the bottles you have your booze in will float which makes swimming easier, but someone dragging a raft of bottles behind them does raise the eyebrows of security. If you can get your prize underneath you like some sort of liver liquidating lilo then not only is it hidden from those who may wish you harm, but you also have some added buoyancy! If you are going to attempt this, start small. While the phrase “He died trying to swim his bros a 50L cask of bourbon across a 1km lake” is one of the coolest things you could have written on your gravestone, you wouldn’t be around to brag about it so kinda not worth it…
Stuff of Legends:
When it comes to booze smuggling, go big or go home is a very valid phrase. Every security guard has their eyes peeled like potatoes for that lonely bottle of vodka in a handbag, but if you rock up to the trade entrance with 15 kegs and a clipboard, look like you’re in a rush and ask “Where does Stacey want these??”, I guarantee the only problem you will have is trying to drink 15 kegs in 3 days. This is by no means the only way to go big either. Air drops, reverse Ocean’s 11, and underground tunnel systems are all valid options, tried and true. Borrowing a few ostriches and sending them stampeding towards the main gate could work out, for those of you doubting this, it’s already been done as shown here. In fact, any large distraction near the entrance will help everyone out, whether it’s Justin Bieber, a controlled explosion, or just a couple of strippers, smuggling booze is a bit like magic: misdirection is the key.
If there is a takeaway point from all this, it would be something along the lines of be original! Smuggling booze is an art form and Da Vinci didn’t get famous for copying stuff he found on Google… which kind of defeats the whole point of this article but you get what I mean. Alternatively, the more intelligent option would be to go with Stoke Travel’s unlimited beer and sangria for 10 euros a day! Saves you from the hassle of smuggling and the risk of losing your hard earned booze, all without breaking the bank.