Heading to Electric Picnic – are you and your car festival-ready?

With Electric Picnic kicking off on Friday we have some tips for safe festival motoring writes Geraldine Herbert


Is your car ready? 

Make sure your car is up to the job so check the following

  • check the oil
  • check the tyre pressure
  • check all fluid levels
  • fill up the tank
  • check your spare tyre

Before you set off

  • Plan your route and journey time before you set off – if you know where you’re going, you’ll avoid the added stress of an unexpected detour on the day.
  • Take a flashing bike light or torch with you. Also ensure to pack a portable charger or two as you’re probably going to be using your phone a lot more than usual.
  • Don’t overload your vehicle. Any bags you need to take with you should be packed securely into the boot to avoid obstructing your view.
  • Take some water and snacks in case you do hit festival traffic hot spots
  • Remember any extra weight will increase fuel consumption – do you really need that extra pair of wellies?
  • Get a good playlist for the journey on the way so it’s probably worth giving a bit of research (but not too much) into the current line-up.


Arriving by Car

M7 Southbound (from Dublin and the North)

Event car traffic should exit the M7 at Ballydavis Interchange Junction 16. Please follow event traffic signage and Garda on duty will direct you to the designated parking areas.
M7 Northbound (Limerick and the South West)

Continue on M7 and exit at Junction 17. Please follow event traffic signage and Garda on duty will direct you to the designated parking areas.

M8 Northbound (Cork and South)
Exit the M8 at Junction 3 for Ballacolla and Abbeyleix. Please follow event traffic signage and Garda on duty will direct you to the designated parking areas.

N80 Carlow & South East
Travel along the N80 and N78 to Simmons Mills and proceed via the Windy Gap into Stradbally. Turn left at Court Square (opposite Dunne’s pub) onto the Timahoe Road and turn left into the designated car park.

N80 West

Proceed via Mountmellick and onto Portlaoise Town. At Fairgreen Roundabout turn right onto the ring road. Continue to Mountrath Road R445 and turn right. Continue to Rockdale Roundabout and turn left onto the Ring Road L26964-0. Turn right at the Roundabout onto the N77 to Meelick Junction where traffic route merges with event traffic from M7 Northbound and Limerick South West, above.


Where to Park?

  • Parking is free. There is a yellow, red and green carpark.
  • The Green Car Park is open from 16.00 on Thursday 1st September for Early Entry ticket holders only. The Red & Yellow Car Parks are open from 09:00 on Friday 2nd September until 13:00 Monday 5th September 2022. The car park is staffed 24 hours a day during this period.
  • Please follow the event signage and directions from the Gardaí when arriving to the festival, not the sat nav! There are different routes into the festival depending on the direction you are coming from and what mode of transport you are using and whether you are being dropped off, a weekend ticket holder, a family ticket holder, bringing campervan/caravans or a day ticket holder.
  • All attendees travelling to the event by car are required to park within the car parks they are directed to by the Gardai and event staff.
  • Parking is free at the festival. These car parks allow access to all general camping areas. No sleeping, camping or fires are allowed in the car parks.
  • Please note that tow-away vehicles are in operation throughout the event and will remove any illegally parked cars. There will also be a local recovery service based onsite on Monday morning.

Don’t forget

  • Lock up your vehicle and put your car keys in a very secure place which you’re not likely to forget about and they won’t fall out of.
  • Don’t leave anything valuable in your car  – including sat navs, car stereos, cameras, CDs or mobile phones
  • Leave your glove compartment empty and open so that thieves can see they have nothing to break in for.
  • Make a note of where you have parked, trying to find a car amongst the thousands parked can be a nightmare.


Setting off for  home

  • Prepare to have your patience tested, as thousands leave the campsites delays are inevitable.
  • Rain, a constant feature of our Irish weather, can quickly turn a field full of cars into a slippery, muddy bog so if this happens try not to spin the wheels so set off  in second gear, not first and  use the accelerator  gently. Get as many people out of the car as you can, and if possible as much other weight. You can also try cardboard placed in front of the driven wheels to help aid traction or car mats can be used as a last resort!. Once you get moving try to maintain momentum and stay moving.
  • Though you may not have had anything to drink that morning, you may still be over the limit from the night before.
  • And you’re likely to be tired, so ensure you grab breakfast and a coffee before hitting the road.


Stay safe and enjoy!


Geraldine Herbert

28th August, 2022


Author: Geraldine Herbert

Motoring Editor and Columnist for the Sunday Independent and editor of wheelsforwomen. Geraldine is also a regular contributor to Good Housekeeping (UK), EuroNews and to RTÉ, Newstalk, TodayFM, BBC Radio and Vigin Media. You can follow Geraldine on Twitter at @GerHerbert1

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