No band ever expects gifts heading into tour, but if you feel like showing your appreciation for your faves, why not be a little extra? We reached out to band members, photographers, merch slingers and tour managers to see what touring crews really need on the road. Check out the list below for something you can bring along next time you head to a show—and don’t forget to bring extra for all the crew who keeps your favorite band going!
This was by far the most resounding answer to the question, “What do you really need on tour?” Moving around all the time means that bands leave a trail of phone chargers behind in every hotel room, gas station and Starbucks. Bring them a spare when you see them and they’ll thank you forever.
Coffee gift cards
Whether it’s Starbucks or Dunkin’, Peet’s or Caribou, Coffee Bean or Gloria Jean’s—bands need their coffee. Find their specialty spot and gift them their next cup.
Long drives get boring real quick, and something to break up the stretch between Idaho and Iowa really brightens the mood. Even something simple will provide a few hours of entertainment (and loads of Instagram Story content). You could go more modern with tiny finger gloves and fidget spinners, or kick it old school with Yo-yos, Bop It’s and Chinese finger traps.
Hygiene and laundry items
We’re not asking you to buy bands’ new deodorant (like, actually…don’t do that), but small hygiene items run out quick on tour. Especially easy things like dry shampoo, laundry pods or socks might refresh the van and make everyone’s travels nicer.
As much as bands love traveling the world, early load-in/soundcheck sometimes means they can’t explore as much as they would like. Bring them the local delicacy, whether it be Georgetown Cupcake or Voodoo Doughnut, and show them your favorite part of your city—no leaving the venue required!
Road trip essentials
Think about it: Have you been in a car for more than six hours? What did you need? Smaller bands in particular are traveling around in vans and need every road trip item imaginable. A good place to start are packs of bottled water, gum, air fresheners (see earlier with hygiene) and anything else that would make a cramped car feel more like home.