March 30, 2023

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The festival and carnival are expensive, but we'll just party

The festival and carnival are expensive, but we’ll just party

The closer the carnival gets, the greater the topic of conversation at the D’Haone Eindhoven Carnival Association: the price of beer. “On the market this year it costs about 3.50 euros. For a small cup. That’s very little,” says the association’s president, Tim De Sieux.

“Imagine you want to get a tour for a group of ten people. You’re 35 euros poorer,” says Tim. “Maybe it makes sense and there are still some places where it’s a little cheaper. But it’s a pity.”

High beer prices are a thorn in the flesh for carnival-goers. However, Tim expects to drink a few beers less. “The real carnival is going to be there. Maybe people will try to drink more of their own cans during the parade or outside the pub, or they’ll come up with something else.”

What applies to Carnival, applies at least as much as it applies to the festivals of the coming summer. Yesterday, the Lowlands Festival announced that a weekend ticket would cost around €300 this year. An increase of 45 euros over last year’s price.

Misunderstanding and rejection

There is a lot of misunderstanding and disapproval in the reactions on social media. Many people claim they no longer go because it would have been too expensive. “Outrageous”, “Boycott” and “Shame on You” are written to the festival audience, shocked by the prices.

Lowlands Festival director Eric van Eerdenburg can’t escape the price hike. The festival podcast mentions the price hike A hard cookie to swallow. But “it couldn’t be any other way.” Festival-goers promise they will get something good in return. For example, the famous singer Billie Eilish will come to the festival.

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Not only is Lowlands getting more expensive. from an overview From It turns out that almost every festival has raised its prices. Increase percentages by a maximum of 50 percent. One exception is the Awakening Festival in Hilvarenbeek, where the price remains the same compared to last year: 220 euros for the weekend.

However, most of the festivals that have become more expensive will be sold out again, predicts Joss Clerks, a specialist in the hospitality and entertainment sector at Rabobank.

Just sold out

“Ultimately, consumers are looking for ways to fill their spare time,” says Klerx. “It’s possible in every way, of course. But going to the pub with the carnival or later in the summer for a festival remains an option loved by many. Some of the festivals are already sold out or almost sold out now.”

Furthermore, Clerks argues, corona years also influence people’s behavior. “We’re still seeing more growth in this industry. It’s in people’s memory that they couldn’t do anything for two years, and now they can. In the end, the consumer just wants an experience, an interpretation of their free time. Festivals offer that option.”

It’s not surprising, Clerks says, that most festivals are becoming more expensive. “They can’t do anything else. Equipment, fuel, everything is getting more expensive. All prices just go up. It’s always the consumer who pays.”

just swallow

25-year-old Marit is one of the people who, despite the high prices, can’t wait to go to the Lowlands this summer. “When I heard the prices, it was a bit of a shock. But I’ve wanted to go there for a long time, so I’m talking about it.”

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“I’ve already heard many stories from friends who are reluctant to go, in part because of the price,” says Marit. “I would like to give it a try knowing that every festival this summer is going to be expensive.”

Last year, many festivals went on for the first time in years. See below how it happened in Pinkpop:

“At the same time, I also know from some friends in my class that they simply can’t stand it,” says Marit. “Because everything is really expensive right now.”

For Marit, the price takes away part of the fun. “For a weekend in the Lowlands, you can also pay a good chunk of your rent. That of course makes it less attractive. But despite the absurdly high amount, I just go!”