Ultra: Fyre Festival 2.0
ABOVE: Photo taken from Global News- stranded fans walking across the Rickenbacker Causeway.
Anyone within a 10 mile radius of Miami’s Virginia Key would be overwhelmed with the extravagant lights, and indescribably loud pounding of edm music from the infamous Ultra music festival. This year, the festival took place from March 27th to the 29th. Whether you love it or hate it, this year, Ultra was undeniably a disaster. In addition to causing the expected fist-clenching traffic, a staggering 50,000 edm enthusiasts were left stranded for hours after the festival ended, around 2:30 am. Getting to Virginia Key, a small island just south of Miami was already a nightmare, so one can imagine, so was getting out. Many people attending Ultra planned to take busses provided by Ultra back into Miami beach that night. However, as the night progressed several busses passed the exhausted, eager passengers, leaving them stranded due to errors in scheduling as well as logistics flaws. Lines to get on the busses that inconsistently picked people up reportedly ranged anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours. There were no concessions or water, let alone waiting or sitting areas for the tired, and most likely intoxicated festival goers. After hours of waiting, some of the exhausted, frustrated fans accepted that the shuttles were not going to take them home, or back to their hotel – at least not any time soon, and decided the only way out was to walk. The Rickenbacker Causeway, which connects Virginia Key to Miami is over two and a half miles long, and about an hour and a half walk. Most festival attendees did not get some shut eye until around 3 am! The following Saturday and Sunday were not much better: There were still shuttle delays, but nothing as extreme. However, there was a general consensus that ULTRA had a serious lack of sufficient customer service and exhibited maltreatment. What was intended to be the festival of a lifetime turned out like the infamous Fyre festival. Attendees have not reported any refunds or reimbursements yet, and it is unclear what Ultra’s next steps will be.