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  • My first Jazz Fest

    I've been wanting to visit New Orleans for years and hope to finally make the trip for 2011 Jazz Fest. Here's the thing, I live in Melbourne Australia and have no idea what I need to arrange before time. I was hoping to pre-book tix to tie-in with my flight and then look at accommodation but already the hotels, hostels and B&Bs are filling up.
    Any suggestions?

  • #2
    Ozzie! Paging Ozzie!!

    Now that I got that out of the way...

    How long are you planning to stay in New Orleans? Since the fest covers two weekends, not everyone stays for both weekends (and I'm jealous of those that can!).

    You won't be able to find a package that include fest tickets, I don't think. It would probably be easier to find a package that includes hotel and airfare and then plan from there. Daily tickets are available, and there are other options, such as the WWOZ Brass Pass. Daily tickets never sell out. Higher-tier tickets sometimes do (Big chief, Grand Marshall, etc).

    The bored here is a wealth of information about good and bad areas/hotels, so please feel free to ask about specific hotels prior to booking. Some people book their accomodations for next year almost as soon as they get home from Fest. Others wait until almost the last minute, hoping for (and usually getting) better deals. It is a gamble.

    Good luck, and please let us know more specifics so that we can be of help

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Aussie_Natasha View Post
      I've been wanting to visit New Orleans for years and hope to finally make the trip for 2011 Jazz Fest. Here's the thing, I live in Melbourne Australia and have no idea what I need to arrange before time. I was hoping to pre-book tix to tie-in with my flight and then look at accommodation but already the hotels, hostels and B&Bs are filling up.
      Any suggestions?
      I'm sure more information will come along. If you have not been to the Swagland site, you need to. It is expert advice given by one of our longtime posters. It is http://jazzfest.swagland.com . Also, in spite of the name of this particular forum, the Jazzfest forum is much better attended by those who have been making the trek for many years. Lots of craziness there, but also great advice. We have a number of Aussies who have been coming for years who post. So, back to Main Category and then pick the first forum - Jazz Fest Forum.

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      • #4
        The festival tickets are the easy part. General admission never sells out, VIP tickets sometimes do but typically not until April. Some hotels may package fest tickets with the room, but the savings are minimal if any.

        First determine the dates you want to come (the lineup should be out before the end of the month, if that affects your decision). Then book hotel & airfare.

        I recommend against a rental car. No need to pre-book airport transportation, just hop in a cab or shuttle when you arrive. Likewise for festival transportation.

        Many folks get by without restaurant reservations, there's a ton of great places to eat if you have the patience to wait a while for a table. If you do want restaurant reservations at a specific place, check with them 2 prior out when they start accepting them for those dates.
        Visit my Jazzfest advice site: http://jazzfest.swagland.com/

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Aussie_Natasha View Post
          I've been wanting to visit New Orleans for years and hope to finally make the trip for 2011 Jazz Fest. Here's the thing, I live in Melbourne Australia and have no idea what I need to arrange before time. I was hoping to pre-book tix to tie-in with my flight and then look at accommodation but already the hotels, hostels and B&Bs are filling up.
          Any suggestions?
          Natasha, there is a friend of ours, Bryce, who has been flying over to Jazzfest from Melbourne for the past several years---He posts here under his nickname Gards, and I would bet he would be happy to get together with you and answer any questions that you might have in person.

          There are people flying in from all over the world to be a part of musical history at Jazzfest---Europe, South America, New Zealand, Canada; Jazzfest in New Orleans is a MUST for anyone who really loves live music!!!

          Good Luck---Matthew
          Last edited by MormonMatthew; 01-07-2011, 11:52 AM.

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          • #6
            Cheers Natasha.... very excited for you! Indeed Gards is prolly your best aussie contact as he is close by and his wealth of information can be bought for just a couple of cold ones!

            Feel free to email me at tanyounger at bigpond dot com or call me on my very fancy new phone.... 0408 992627

            Visit here often.... especially after the line-up is announced things will be jumping and you will learn about things you couldn't have imagined even existed. Swag's website is an absolute must.

            My early planning tip (not shared by Gards who is a much more seasoned traveller) is that if you do the long flight with Qantas, then book the US domestic flights with American Airlines as they partner with Qantas and you can check your bags from Melbourne all the way to New Orleans and you arrive and leave from the same vicinity if not the same terminal.... LAX can be a trip!

            Have fun planning!

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Aussie_Natasha View Post
              I've been wanting to visit New Orleans for years and hope to finally make the trip for 2011 Jazz Fest. Here's the thing, I live in Melbourne Australia and have no idea what I need to arrange before time. I was hoping to pre-book tix to tie-in with my flight and then look at accommodation but already the hotels, hostels and B&Bs are filling up.
              Any suggestions?
              Hi Natasha
              Gards here,I will be quick as I have just surfaced on this hot morning and need to go for a swim to ease the hangover.
              Feel free to give me a call on 041 777 3454 when you feel like it,and I would be happy to help out in any way.If I make it this year it will be number 6 for me.
              Jazzfest is a great festival and New Orleans is fine town,very different in many ways from most of the USA,and you will love it.
              You have picked a good year to travel with the Aussie Dollar the way it is,so I would say go for it.There will probaly be a substantial crew from Melbourne this year,Brian Wise will be leading his OFF The Record Tour again,which I believe is full,and there is also another bunch of guys going,that I catch up with at Byron Bluesfest every year,some went last year some will be new,they will probably head up to Memphis and elsewhere after the Fest.
              My own plans are slightly up in the air as I work in the sport/entertainment biz and a forthcoming visit to Australia by a much loved Music Icon,may stuff my plans,but I have accomm already sorted for Fest.
              Anway I look forward to hearing from you if you want any further information,and you will find that the others that post here are full of all sorts of helpfull hints and other stuff as well.
              Cheers

              Gards

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Gards View Post
                If I make it this year it will be number 6 for me.

                Cheers

                Gards
                Hey, number 6 for me too! Hmmnn.... when do I lose my newbie status?

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by ozzie View Post
                  Hey, number 6 for me too! Hmmnn.... when do I lose my newbie status?
                  I think it may be something like Ronnie Wood being considered the new guitarist in the Stones,after 35 years or so.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Gards View Post
                    My own plans are slightly up in the air as I work in the sport/entertainment biz and a forthcoming visit to Australia by a much loved Music Icon may stuff my plans,but I have accomm already sorted for Fest.
                    I see that the alcohol has finally taken it's toll......

                    Sad.

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                    • #11
                      Thanks everyone!! I'll definitely call the Aussies over the next week for extra tips, and have been looking at the links sent too. Gards, I'm off to the beach shortly too- my house is brick and I'm sweltering!

                      I'm actually heading to North Carolina prior to New Orleans to check out a university there. I'll be driving down with a friend, so transport wont be a problem. Now that you all say festival tickets wont be a hassle it seems accommodation is the only thing I need to figure out and I was hoping to put that off until after I hear the line-up (I can only come for one week). Any recommendations? Cheers!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Aussie_Natasha View Post
                        Thanks everyone!! I'll definitely call the Aussies over the next week for extra tips, and have been looking at the links sent too. Gards, I'm off to the beach shortly too- my house is brick and I'm sweltering!

                        I'm actually heading to North Carolina prior to New Orleans to check out a university there. I'll be driving down with a friend, so transport wont be a problem. Now that you all say festival tickets wont be a hassle it seems accommodation is the only thing I need to figure out and I was hoping to put that off until after I hear the line-up (I can only come for one week). Any recommendations? Cheers!
                        just remember to factor in the cost of parking the car at the hotel. $15-35 per night when staying in the FQ/CBD/WD.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Packages to New Orleans

                          Hi Natasha, I run a music festival travel company and have a vacancy in our group tour this year. Our group tours leave from Melbourne and are all inclusive. If you're interested visit www.mezraytours.com or contact me at [email protected]. Looking forward to hearing from you. Regards Merryn

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