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Tips and tricks for surviving an Ibiza clubbing holiday!

All the practical information you need for your first Ibiza clubbing holiday, including drug laws, club tickets, island transport and lots more.

Have you already read our page for Ibiza virgins?

So, you have saved your pennies, booked the flights, bought some amazing outfits; you even have another week's holiday at home after you come back, just to recuperate. Everything is perfect.

But are you REALLY prepared for this clubbing experience of a lifetime? Read this page before touchdown on the White Isle, just to make sure. It won't take long, plus it will save you time, money, and it will help you avoid any unwanted hassle. Bonus.

Please note, you must be 18 years old to enter the clubs in Ibiza, and you will be asked for ID on the door.

When to go | Where to go | Avoiding the queue | Drink & drugs | Prices | Practicalities | How to get here | Island transport | Disco bus | Health and safety


When to go? Read this bit carefully!

The typical Ibiza tourist season runs from the beginning of May until the end of October. During this time, the majority of bars, restaurants and clubs are open, so it is the ideal time to visit.

Historically, the clubbing season starts at the end of May and continues until the middle of October, although each year, the season gets longer and longer, with venues staying open for longer than ever.

The clubbing season kicks off with the International Music Summit (IMS) that takes place between Playa d'en Bossa and Ibiza Town at the end of May. Several superclubs will have open even earlier, such as Amnesia, Pacha and Sankeys each with its summer opening, while the rest of the big clubs - Ushuaïa, Privilege, DC10 and Hï Ibiza - will all open their doors at the end of May, too. If you already have a favourite party, then keep your eyes peeled for their separate opening party dates - without stating the obvious, they will take place after the big opening of the club itself.

See our party calendar for more info.

When the summer starts drawing to a close, the club nights begin to shut one by one with their closing parties, starting from the middle of September and continuing until around the second week of October. After that, it's just the smaller venues, plus Pacha and Sankeys that remain open.

While summer is always the busiest, there are excellent parties all throughout the year. Book yourselves a cheap flight and head over for New Year's Eve, Easter or at the beginning of May and end of October. While most of the big clubs may be shut, they open for special occasions. Plus there will be a lot going on at one of the island's many bars and restaurants, so you will get to see a different side to the island. Check our news pages for up-to-date information on what's happening on the island during these months.

As a side note, bear in mind that if you choose to come in August, this is the island's busiest month, so prices for drinks and club entrance tickets are at their highest. It can also be extremely hot and more difficult to find a taxi or a renatal car. Plus, the competition for space on the beaches is fierce. However, if rampaging some of the world's best club nights is what you're looking for, this is the month when you're sure to find it. Just don't expect to be the only person on the dancefloor.

Not here in high summer? Check the forum devoted to cool season partying.


Where to go?

Everyone has a first time here on the island, and with so much choice, it can be a little overhwhelming to figure out where to go. But not to worry, we've got you all covered. In our clubbing guide you will find descriptions of all the big (and smaller) clubs, the most famous bars and all the parties of the island. Aside from that, the points below should help out, too.

Before you book anything, check out our guides to all the major resorts: Ibiza Town, San Antonio, Playa den Bossa, Santa Eulalia, that way you'll be able to get a better idea of where you would like to base yourself.

You can also check out our clubbing forums, which are full of tips and information from fellow Ibiza lovers. Don't be afraid to ask any question you like - there are many regular visitors who will be happy to help.

When planning nights out, you'll be bombarded with options, so make the most of asking the experts. Talk to people staying in the same place, listen to the PRs' advice, look for posters advertising forthcoming nights and, of course, keep an eye on our party calendar - your go-to guide for everything that's happening at every club, every night of the week. You can search our website for party nights and DJs, so if you already have a favourite, it's easy to locate exactly when and where they're playing. Try to be a little organised because chances are, once you get here, you'll be pretty pre-occupied soaking up all that Balearic sun.


Where to stay

If you're basing where you stay on its proximity to big clubs, then it is worth remembering that Pacha is in Ibiza Town, near the harbour; Sankeys, Ushuaïa and Hï Ibiza (the club that replaced Space) are all in Playa d'en Bossa, DC10 nearby on the road to Las Salinas beach; Es Paradis and Eden are in San Antonio, and Amnesia and Privilege are situated on the main road between Ibiza Town and San Antonio, near San Rafael.

Have a look at our clubbing guides to each major resort to find out which is the best fit for you.

Remember that Ibiza is a popular family destination too, so if you are coming just for the clubbing, find out in advance what your hotel is like and where it is situated. Not all families are going to enjoy chilling in the pool with you and your 10 newfound best mates at 09:00 in the morning with techno blaring out the speakers!

It's also worth knowing that it's illegal to sleep on the beach. So if you head down to the beach to catch an early sunrise post-clubbing, try your best not to fall asleep. The police patrol regularly, and they're not kindly disposed to backpackers kipping on the sand...you have been warned.

On Ibiza you can find a wide choice of hotel and apartments suiting really every taste and budget, from cosy hostels in San Antonio to luxury 5 star hotels directly on the beach of Playa d'en Bossa. If you want to party all day and night, have a look at our hotels and apartments for clubbers.

Or get a group of friends together and live the dream with your own private holiday villa on Ibiza - you will be surprised how affordable it is.


Entrance tickets

You can buy your club entrance tickets online through us, so there will be no last minute panic about where and when to buy them, and it makes it easier to budget for your overall holiday. All Spotlight online tickets also give you guaranteed entry, which is vital for the popular parties.

Buy Ibiza club tickets here.


Dress codes

Within reason, the clubs will not refuse patrons with tickets. The hip, less hip and the sloppy are allowed to mingle without fear of contamination between strata of sophistication. Attract attention with an outfit is not easy, but do feel free to try. We are big fans of those who try to embrace the free-spirited nature of dressing on Ibiza from decades past, where an 'anything goes' policy was the only rule.

Having said that, none of the VIP lounges allow entry with shorts - so if you are hobnobbing it with the jet set, dress up!


Avoiding the queue

Most clubs open at 24:00 and continue through the night until 06:30 (officially). As you can imagine no one wants to be the first to arrive, but everyone wants to be there at the very latest by 03:00. Quite often, there are massive queues to get in the club between 01:30 and 03:00, especially in August.

The easiest way to get into the clubs is to buy advance tickets online, naturally. And all Spotlight online tickets give you guaranteed entry (vital for the popular parties).

Buy your tickets online here.

Sometimes you will find that you will have to queue, but often this cannot be helped - there are certain parties which are so popular that queueing is inevitable. Just come prepared and see it as an opportunity to save up all your energy for the dance-fest later.

What queues are the longest?

All queues in August; popular nights at Amnesia; Pacha is very, very popular in high season. Just make sure you get there early enough and then it shouldn't be a problem.


Drink and drugs

The technical side

The legal age limit to buy alcohol is now 18, tobacco is 16. Officially you have to be 18 to get into the clubs. It is illegal to drink alcohol walking on the streets.

In regards to the possession of drugs, the situation in Spain is a confused one. Although in 1992 a law has strictly regulated the use of drugs in public places (no smoking spliffs on the beach), it is not considered a crime, and therefore there can be no jail sentences. In Spain, personal possession of any drug is not a criminal offence. However, the line between 'personal' and 'dealing' is a very thin one. Be sensible.

Needless to say it is not only very stupid but also ILLEGAL TO DRINK AND DRIVE. And of course, this is the case for driving under the influence of drugs, too. The penalties are severe, and accidents in summer are horrendous.

As a result, traffic controls and searches by the police in larger towns and resorts are becoming increasingly more common, and they test for alcohol as well as drug usage while driving. The legal limit for driving has been reduced to 0.25mg/l of alcohol in your breath, or 0.5g/l in your blood. This is equivalent to two cans of beer or two glasses of wine.

BE SENSIBLE AND BE CAREFUL - if you're going to drive, the safest bet is not to touch alcohol or drugs at all. Without trying to be scaremongers, there are many foreigners in jail in Spain due to drug-related offences. If you are imprisoned, you have the right to contact your Consul, although they will probably not be able to get you out of jail.

Just remember to always consume carefully, and if you have consumed, travel by disco bus (details below) or grab a cab, which is a really cheap way to get around if you are in a group.


Prices

Okay, are you sitting comfortably...tickets for the most famous parties (Cream, Cocoon, FMIF etc.) range from €40 to €80 depending on the party (although the smaller clubs and discos in the town centres cost considerably less). Then again, this is Ibiza, and in all likelihood, you would pay as much at home for a concert ticket. Plus we promise, these are nights you will never forget, so when you put it into perspective, it doesn't seem so expensive after all, eh?

A vodka lemon will cost around €15 in a club or €10 in Ibiza Town or one of the pre-club bars. A beer (or water) will cost you up to €12 in a club and €6-8 elsewhere. As you can see it quickly adds up, so be wise with your drinking and don't go out without a budget.

The Spanish currency is the Euro €. Check on today's exchange rates from oanda.com


Practicalities

Spanish measures are generous to say the least, so it is very easy to underestimate those vodkas. As we have mentioned, drinks can be pricey, so if you're looking to have a drink before you go out, hunt out one of the many bars with happy hours, where drinks are a lot cheaper and you are guaranteed to get good deals. Do not try and smuggle drinks into the clubs because all that will result is that these will be found and you thrown out.

If you have a favourite DJ, remember to use our DJ search to look for their individual listings - you might find that it's cheaper to see them at one venue during your stay than another.


How to get here

Look on the internet for a cheap flight. In the main saison from May till October there are many connections from most European countries.

Ibiza is a globally know clubbing destination, so people are coming from all over the world. There are connecting flights via Barcelona or Madrid and also other European airpors like London, Amsterdam or Paris.

Read more: Ibiza flights


Island transport

You will find all you need to know in our holiday tips about getting around the island.


Disco bus

The disco bus is your friend. Do yourselves a massive favour and get acquainted with the timetable. It only costs €3 to get from one side of the island to the other, and often it drops you off right outside where you need to be (Pacha, Amnesia, Privilege, Ushuaïa and Hï Ibiza all have bus stops almost directly in front of the club).

In peak season, buses run every half an hour, all night long, and not only will you be delivered to your doorstep, you'll also get an experience thrown in for free. Disco buses are loud and proud (that goes for the people and the music), and many a friend for life has been made on the road between San Antonio and Playa d'en Bossa. It should be an integral part of every Ibiza Virgin's holiday.

Disco bus routes and timetables


Health and safety

See our holiday information section for health and safety tips.

We want you to have the time of your life, but remember to be careful. That way you will enjoy it even more!


Ibiza Spotlight does not condone drug use of any sort, but we do hope to offer practical advice to anyone going to Ibiza.

The above information is correct to the best of our knowledge, but may be subject to change.