Last year, I took a long train journey up to Scotland with my dear friend Rob, and experienced my first ever Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Life has not been the same since.
What ensued was not-quite-a-week’s-worth of mayhem, fun, inspiration and madness. Sadly, I am not returning this year, but I’ve got my eyes on booking a trip for 2018 already. Plenty of time to plan my return!
Honestly, I still think about it every day.
Meanwhile, The Edinburgh Fringe 2017 is just beginning.
Maybe, like me, you’re heading up there for the first time. Perhaps you’re a little nervous, and not sure what to expect.
If it’s all a little daunting for you, I hope I can help! Here’s a little list of tips and tricks to remember when you head up to Scotland’s wonderful capital. Some of these are from me, and some of these are from a couple of close friends who are Fringe Veterans themselves (thank you Rob and Robin!)
Twelve tips to help you get the most out of your first Edinburgh Fringe Festival experience
- Plan ahead a little, and get a schedule in your phone. It’s exciting to have a timetable together and anticipate your next show! However…
- …leave space for spontaneity. Head up the Royal Mile and see what’s going on. Turn up to a box office and ask for a ticket to see whatever’s on next. You never know what you’ll stumble upon!
- See what’s on when you get to the venue. Popular acts will sell out, but there may be some last-minute tickets released just before the show – so it’s worth asking!
- It may be August, but this is Scotland we’re talking about. Pack shorts and a waterproof.
- Make sure you take time to stop, eat, and refuel. Try and grab some fresh food, and SLEEP. Self care is important, and you can easily burn out.
- There’s a half-price hut for on-the-day bargains. Go there.
- This is the one time it’s ok to talk to as many strangers as possible. You might hear about a fun show, or event, or meet some new friends! You might just make their day, too.
- It’s ok to take time out. It can be an overwhelming experience; take time to explore the city, sleep in, climb Arthur’s Seat, or just have coffee and people watch. Contrary to popular belief, you do not need to see a show every minute of every day.
- Take time to check out the Free Fringe. There are some true gems.
- You will probably see something crap. There’s always a bit of a risk, so don’t be disheartened if you end up watching something you don’t enjoy. That’s all part of it. The good stuff more than makes up for it, anyway.
- Ask friends for advice and recommendations. If they have the same tastes as you, it’s the best way to find a good show.
- Keep your ticket stubs, and make a list of everything you see. You’ll want to remember everything.