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One Thing You Need to Pack for the Sundance Film Festival According to the Institute Team

The snow is falling in the Wasatch mountains, and we’re gearing up for the 2024 Sundance Film Festival. Whether you’re heading to the Festival for the first time or you’re joining us again in Utah, there’s a chance you might be missing some essential items on your packing list — things that will help you stay warm, hydrated, and looking your best for the Fest.

We asked some of our colleagues who will be heading to the mountain to share their go-to lifesaver they’re packing for the Festival, and we’ve compiled the list below. Use this as a resource when you’re getting ready to head to Park City or Salt Lake City, and add these gems to your packing list. 

The Sundance staffers below won’t be leaving home without these items, and neither should you. Explore this list, come prepared, and watch all the films on your schedule with peace of mind. And make sure to visit our How to Fest page for tips to stay healthy so you can thrive during the Festival.        

Aquaphor/Vaseline + gloves

“Use these items to deep-moisturize your hands at night when they’re starting to dry out too much in the cold (leaving the gloves on for 10-15 mins does wonders).”  — Sylvy Fernandez, Junior Publicist 

Nasal Gel 

“If you’re prone to dry nasal cavities, get Ayr. I also use this on planes!”

— Isabella Kanjanapangka, Assistant Director, Digital Marketing, Sundance Collab

Electrolyte Packets 

“Warm socks and electrolyte packets. I’ve been told that hydration is key to prevent altitude sickness.” — Jason Nichols, Creative Director  

A Favorite Book 

“We’ll see if I can focus, but I’m going to bring a book I’m currently reading. I think it’ll be nice to try to decompress at the end of each day with something that isn’t my phone.” — Alan Vazquez, Festival Coordinator, Theater Operations 

Handheld Steamer 

Every time I’m going to an event, I LOVE to bring a handheld steamer because it is so nice to have your clothes wrinkle-free, and you never know if someone else needs one!” — Diana Verde, Marketing Coordinator

Hydration Helpers 

“I’m definitely a sea-level girl, and altitude messes me up! So, saline nasal spray, Palmer’s cocoa butter, Vaseline or Aquaphor, and ALL THE WATER.” — Rachel Brethauer, Content Marketing Manager, Sundance Collab

Packable Snacks and Winter Accessories 

“The snow in Utah can get really deep and very icy. You don’t want to fall while in a mad dash to get to a theater, so warm waterproof boots with good traction are a must. Never underestimate how much the small accessories can help you stay warm! Handwarmers and a knit hat can really help keep the cold out. I remember attending my first festival — I was always running around so much, I would forget to eat. I would end up at the grocery store late at night trying to find a good meal. Bringing some good snacks can help you focus on what you really want to do during the festival: spend all day at the movies, not at the store.”  — Anna Kaser, Web Developer and Designer 

Portable Humidifier and Moisturizing Balms 

“[The humidifier] is very much needed. It’s so dry in Utah that you don’t even sweat. Also, pack very super moisturizing balms.” — Isabella Kanjanapangka, Assistant Director, Digital Marketing Collab

Protein Bars 

“RX bars or any kind of nutrient-dense bar to snack on between screenings!” — Ana Verde, Manager, Artist Accelerator 

Sheet Masks

“One for every night of the Fest to fall asleep in and wake up with rested-looking skin.” — Sylvy Fernandez, Junior Publicist

Touchscreen Gloves or “Texting Gloves” 

“Between navigating the Sundance app, keeping up on social media, and managing digital tickets, chances are we’re going to be using our phones a lot. And going without gloves is not an option. Save the hassle of constantly removing your gloves, and pack some touchscreen ones!” — Stephanie Ornelas, Brand and Editorial Writer 

Wellness Vitamins

“I highly recommend the Source Natural Wellness pills! Take them prophylactically throughout the day on each day of the Festival. It’s saved me every year! — Kate Benay, Head of Marketing