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Neversea Festival, 2022 edition

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Last weekend we participated in the fourth edition (July 7-10) of the Neversea festival on the Black Sea coast. So, here are my impressions of this year’s festival.

Transport and parking

We came by personal car from Bucharest, so the transport consisted of refueling with diesel. One evening we went to the festival with Uber. There are both Uber and Bolt in Constanta. Prices fluctuated between 20 - 70 lei (4 - 14 euros) for a 7 km long ride depending on how busy it was at that time. We left at 8:30 PM and returned around 3 AM, and Uber cost us 100 lei (20 euros) round trip. On the other evenings, we went there by personal car and parked 700 meters from the stairs leading to the Neversea beach, in parking zone 1. The parking cost 7.5 lei/3 hours (1.55 euros/3 hours), to which are added 3 more lei (0.6 euros) for each additional hour.

Accommodation

Fortunately, we had the accommodation provided and did not have to pay for the 4 nights of Neversea. This is why I cannot give much information about accommodation in Constanta.

Tickets

We purchased 4-day passes, with general access, in February, at the price of 150 euros/person. I noticed that the price fluctuated, it was more expensive, then it became cheaper again just before the festival, but the differences were not very substantial.

Food and drinks

Inside the festival, there were many stalls where you could buy water, juices, beer, and other alcoholic beverages. At all stalls, the prices were the same. A bottle of half a liter of water or juice cost 10 lei (approx. 2 euros). A beer or a shot cost 15 lei (approx. 3 euros).

There were also quite a few food options consisting of food trucks that sold mainly burgers, French fries, pizza, pancakes, tacos, sandwiches, and even sushi (although there weren’t many people that wanted sushi at the festival). To give you an idea, at the Cartofisserie stand a large portion of French fries cost 27.5 lei (5.5 euros) while in the mall you can find the same potatoes from the same Cartofisserie at 16.5 lei (3.35 euros). If you also wanted sauce with your potatoes, you had to add another 5.5 lei (1.1 euros) while in the mall the same sauce costs 4.4 lei (0.9 euros). The burger from Circus Pub cost 39 lei (7.9 euros) versus 31 lei (6.3 euros) the price in the restaurant, and the fries 15 lei versus 8 lei. I don’t want to sound dissatisfied or discontented, because it seems normal that the prices will be higher at the festival than they normally are, especially since employees worked late into the night going the extra mile, the queues being quite long at most food trucks. Pancakes with various toppings cost around 22-28 lei, a small pizza cost between 30-50 lei, and tacos were about the same price.

Instagram

Neversea’s Instagram page was updated daily with valuable information as the start date approached, but also during the 4 days of the festival. I used it whenever I needed to find out something fast, such as how long the Black Eyed Peas were going to be late (they were half an hour late). I liked that in the vast majority the announced schedule for each scene/artist was followed.

Online check-in, top-up, and refund

We chose to make the check-in online as well as the top-up of the bracelets with the desired amount of money. You cannot use cash or card at the festival. To buy drinks, food, clothes, and other things you use the bracelet on which you previously added money. It seemed easier and faster for us to do this online, otherwise, we could have stayed in long queues on the spot. You could get the money left on the bracelet back, online, by requesting a refund.

The bracelet

We picked up our bracelets on Wednesday, July 6th, to avoid standing in line. It was very good that they offered the option of picking up the bracelets before the actual start of the festival.

Once the bracelet is put tight at your hand, it can no longer be taken down. Which can be pretty annoying, but I understand that if it weren’t so, many people would have come to say that they lost their bracelet and that they want to enter without one. There is another possibility to give the bracelet from one to another, but I don’t think that’s a real reason because it’s very simple to make an app that displays the face associated with the bracelet when it is scanned.

Security check

On their website, they posted information about the size of the bag/backpack you were allowed to enter with, as well as its allowed contents. We only had the mobile phones, a small video camera, a disinfectant, IDs, and keys with us. So, we quickly went through security. From what I noticed, they checked you quite well, it was obvious that you cannot enter the festival with drinks, knives, and other crazy things. One girl was upset that they wouldn’t let her in with the perfume bottle. :-)

Drugs

I saw on the news that some people were caught with drugs at the festival. I smelled weed when I went near the seashore, where it was dark. Inside the festival, we saw police dogs trained for drug detection, as well as police checks on the streets nearby.

Overcrowding

I saw on the news that 60,000 people a day would participate, even 70,000 people on Saturday.

It was a little too crowded for my taste. The festival gates opened at 2 PM. By 9 PM it was still airy, then the number of people coming was growing. I think that the crowd can raise the atmosphere of a concert or bring it down, and I think that when there are a lot of people and everyone sings, applauds, dances, and interacts with the artists on stage, it’s really wonderful. But for me, it was a bit too crowded because without exaggeration I think 80% of people were smokers. Staying 20-30 cm away from a few smokers, when you are not used to cigarette smoke, even outdoors, was terrible. At one point I felt like I was suffocating, my eyes and nose were burning from the smoke, and I had no place to retire so I could still enjoy the concert. It may sound silly to some, but cigarette smoke was the main reason I left pretty early every night. I stayed until 3 AM only on Friday because I wanted to see Netsky, but I was about to give up several times along the way. I was wondering how someone would feel if I put a smoke flare in his or her face, only because this makes me feel good, would he/she have liked it? That’s how I felt among so many smokers. And they also threw their cigarette butts in the sand, as if the beach were their ashtray. I realize this depends on education, respect, and empathy and that some people lack these qualities.

Also, about this subject, I have another mention. On the path between the Main Stage and The Ark stage, there was super crowded, some came, others left, others stood in queues, some burned others with cigarettes, and others took selfies in the middle of the path. I think it would have been a good idea to make two paths with distinct directions of walking. Or that the single path should have the directions of walking drawn on it in order to reduce the risk of being trampled on or pushed by those coming from the opposite direction.

The artists

At first, I was not attracted by the names in the lineup. In February when I bought the tickets, I didn’t know who will perform, and then I was a little disappointed with the final lineup. I knew I wanted to see Parov Stelar and Netsky. Well, I have to say I was pleasantly surprised. I liked the music on the smaller stages as well. On Sunday night I felt very good at Albwho on the Oasis stage, for example. Among the Romanian artists, I went to Carla’s Dreams and Delia. I also really loved Parov Stelar. The most pleasant surprise was The Black Eyed Peas who, although they were late, did a super show, and made it worth the wait.

Organization

I liked how the festival was organized, from the entrance gate to the exit.
I felt safe throughout the festival due to the number of guards.
There were many places where you could buy water and food, we didn’t wait in line for a long time.
The toilets were clean.
I liked the diversity of the stages, the music, and the atmosphere. And I think that was the most important thing.

In conclusion, at the Neversea festival, 2022 edition, we felt good, we liked it, we enjoyed it and if we have the opportunity we will definitely participate in the next editions as well.

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Weekendul ce tocmai a trecut am participat la ce-a de-a patra editie (7-10 iulie) a festivalului Neversea de pe tarmul Marii Negre. Voi scrie asadar cateva impresii la cald despre cum mi s-a parut.

Transport si parcare

Noi am venit cu masina personala din Bucuresti asadar transportul a constat in alimentarea cu motorina. Intr-una din seri am fost la festival cu Uber. Exista in Constanta atat Uber, cat si Bolt. Preturile fluctuau in intervalul 20 - 70 lei pentru un drum de 7 km in functie de gradul de ocupare de la momentul respectiv. Noi am plecat la 8:30 PM si ne-am intors in jurul orei 3 AM, iar Uberul ne-a costat 100 lei dus-intors. In restul serilor am plecat cu masina personala si am parcat la 700 de metri de scarile care conduc catre plaja Neversea, in zona 1, iar parcarea a costat 7.5 lei/3 ore, la care se adauga inca 3 lei pentru fiecare ora suplimentara.

Cazare

Din fericire, am avut cazarea asigurata si nu a trebuit sa platim pentru cele 4 nopti de Neversea. Asadar nu pot oferi informatii cu privire la cazarile din Constanta.

Bilete

Am achizitionat abonamentele pe toate cele 4 zile de festival, cu acces general, in luna februarie, la pretul de 150 euro/persoana. Am observat ca pretul abonamentului a fluctuat, a fost mai scump, apoi s-a ieftinit din nou chiar inainte de festival, dar diferentele de bani nu au fost foarte mari.

Mancare si bauturi

In interiorul festivalului au fost amplasate foarte multe standuri de unde iti puteai cumpara apa, sucuri, bere si alte bauturi alcoolice. La toate chioscurile preturile erau aceleasi. O sticla de jumatate de litru de apa sau suc costa 10 lei. O doza de bere sau un shot costa 15 lei.

Erau de asemenea destul de multe optiuni de mancare constand in rulote care vindeau in principiu burgeri, cartofi prajiti, pizza, clatite, tacos, sandvisuri, chiar si sushi (desi la sushi nu prea se inghesuia lumea). Ca sa va faceti o idee, la standul Cartofisserie o portie large de cartofi prajiti costa 27.5 lei in timp ce in mall gasim aceeasi cartofi de la aceeasi Cartofisserie la 16.5 lei. Daca doreai si sos la cartofi, mai adaugai 5.5 lei in timp ce in mall acelasi sos costa 4.4 lei. Burgerul de la Circus Pub costa 39 lei versus 31 lei pretul din restaurant, iar portia de cartofi prajiti 15 lei versus 8 lei. Nu vreau sa sune a nemultumire, mi se pare normal ca preturile sa fie mai mari la festival decat sunt in mod normal, mai ales ca oamenii munceau pana tarziu in noapte la foc continuu, cozile fiind destul de mari la mai toate rulotele. Clatitele cu diverse topping-uri costau in jur de 22-28 lei, o pizza costa intre 30-50 lei, la tacos erau cam aceleasi preturi.

Instagram

Pagina de Instagram a Neversea-ului a fost actualizata zilnic cu informatii pretioase pe masura ce se apropia data inceperii, dar si pe parcursul celor 4 zile de festival. Eu chiar am folosit-o de cate ori cand am avut nevoia sa aflu ceva rapid, cum ar fi cat mai au de gand sa intarzie cei de la The Black Eyed Peas (au intarziat jumatate de ora). Mi-a placut ca in marea majoritate a fost respectat programul anuntat pentru fiecare scena/artist.

Checkin, top-up si refund online

Am ales sa facem checkin-ul online. La fel si top-up-ul bratarilor cu suma dorita. Nu poti folosi bani cash sau card la festival. Pentru a cumpara bauturi, mancare, haine si alte lucruri iti folosesti bratara pe care ai adaugat bani anterior. Noua ni s-a parut mai simplu si mai rapid sa facem asta online. La fata locului se creau niste cozi destul de mari. Puteai de asemenea sa obtii banii ramasi pe bratara inapoi, tot online.

Bratara

Bratarile le-am ridicat de miercuri, 6 iulie, ca sa evitam statul la coada. A fost foarte bine ca au oferit optiunea ridicarii bratarilor anterior inceperii efective a festivalului. Bratara odata pusa la mana, daca este stransa cu simt de raspundere, nu mai poate fi data jos. Ceea ce poate fi destul de enervant, dar inteleg ca daca nu era asa probabil ar fi venit multi oameni sa spuna ca si-au pierdut bratara si ca vor sa intre fara bratara. Mai exista posibilitatea sa se dea bratara de la unul la altul, dar nu cred ca asta e un motiv real deoarece este foarte simplu sa faci o aplicatie care sa-ti arate fata asociata bratarii la scanare.

Control de securitate

Pe site-ul lor au afisat informatii referitoare la dimensiunea gentii/rucsacului cu care aveai voie sa intri, precum si la continutul permis al acestuia. Noi am avut la noi doar telefoanele mobile, o camera video mica, un dezinfectant, actele de identitate si cheile. Asa ca am trecut rapid de controlul de securitate deoarece nu prea au avut ce sa controleze. Din ce am observat, te controlau destul de bine, era evident ca nu poti intra cu bautura, cutite si alte nebunii la festival. O fata era suparata ca nu au lasat-o sa intre cu sticla de parfum. :-)

Droguri

Am vazut la stiri ca au fost prinsi cativa oameni cu droguri la festival. Am simtit miros de iarba cand m-am retras aproape de malul marii, unde era intuneric. Dar am vazut in incinta festivalului caini politisti antrenati pentru detectia drogurilor, precum si verificari ale politiei pe strada.

Aglomeratie

Tot de la stiri am aflat ca ar fi participat 60 000 de oameni pe zi, chiar 70 000 de oameni sambata. A fost un pic cam prea aglomerat pentru gustul meu. Portile festivalului se deschideau de la ora 2 PM. Pana pe la ora 9 PM era inca liber, apoi numarul de oameni care veneau era din ce in ce mai mare. Sunt de parere ca publicul poate sa ridice atmosfera din cadrul unui concert sau sa o coboare si cred ca atunci cand sunt multi oameni si toata lumea canta, aplauda, danseaza si interactioneaza cu artistii de pe scena este de-a dreptul minunat. Dar pentru mine a fost un pic prea multa lume deoarece fara sa exagerez cred ca 80% dintre oameni erau fumatori. Sa stai la 20-30 cm distanta de cativa fumatori, tu nefiind obisnuit cu fumul de tigara, chiar si in aer liber, a fost groaznic. La un moment dat simteam ca ma sufoc, ma usturau ochii si nasul de la fum si nu aveam nici un loc unde sa ma pot retrage astfel incat sa ma bucur in continuare de concert. Poate pentru unii suna stupid, dar fumul de tigara a fost principalul motiv pentru care am plecat destul de devreme in fiecare seara. Doar vineri am stat pana la 3 AM deoarece am vrut neaparat sa-l vad pe Netsky, dar am vrut sa renunt de mai multe ori pe parcurs. Imi imaginam cum s-ar simti cineva daca i-as baga o fumigena in fata, doar pentru ca asta ma face pe mine sa ma simt bine, i-ar fi placut? Asa m-am simtit eu printre atatia fumatori. Si isi mai aruncau si chistoacele pe jos, de parca plaja ar fi scrumiera lor. Imi dau seama ca tine de educatia fiecaruia, de respect si de empatie si ca unora le cam lipsesc aceste calitati.

Tot in categoria aglomeratie, as mai avea o mentiune de facut. Pe drumul de acces dintre Main Stage si scena The Ark, se crea o aglomeratie groaznica, unii veneau, altii plecau, altii stateau la cozi, unii te mai ardeau cu tigara, altii isi faceau selfie-uri in mijlocul drumului. Cred ca ar fi fost o idee buna sa faca doua poteci cu cate un sens de mers fiecare bine pus in valoare. Sau ca poteca sa aiba desenate pe ea sensurile de mers ca sa mai reduca din riscul sa fii calcat pe picioare sau imbrancit de cei care vin din sens opus.

Artisti

La inceput nu m-au atras numele de pe afis. In februarie cand am cumparat biletele, nu stiam cine va veni si apoi am fost un pic dezamagita de lineup-ul final. Stiam ca vreau sa-i vad pe Parov Stelar si pe Netsky, iar in rest decideam la fata locului. Ei bine, am fost foarte placut suprinsa. Mi-a placut ce am auzit si pe scenele mai mici. De exemplu, duminica seara m-am simtit foarte bine la Albwho pe scena Oasis. Dintre artistii romani am fost la Carla’s Dreams si la Delia la care mai fusesem la concert si stiam ca-mi va placea. De asemenea mi-a placut mult Parov Stelar. Surpriza cea mai placuta au fost cei de la The Black Eyed Peas care desi au intarziat, au facut un super show si au meritat toata asteptarea.

Organizare

Mi-a placut cum a fost organizat festivalul, de la poarta de acces si pana la iesire.
M-am simtit in siguranta pe tot parcursul festivalului datorita numarului de paznici.
Existau multe locuri de unde sa-ti poti cumpara apa si mancare, nu am stat foarte mult la coada nici macar o data.
La toalete am inteles ca era super curat.
Mi-a placut diversitatea scenelor, muzica, atmosfera. Si cred ca asta a fost cel mai important.

Daca tragem linie la finalul festivalului Neversea, editia 2022, ne-am simtit bine, ne-a placut si daca vom mai avea ocazia cu siguranta vom mai participa si la urmatoarele editii.

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