This article was published on August 23rd, 2016
Where we first had tea dances, we now have circuit parties. Huge events, usually with plenty of publicity and events lasting several days. Circuit parties are loud, carnal events full of hot men, hot sex and hot parties. They are the places people go to get crazy and wild, for many, they are the highlight of the gay year and are attended by people travelling from all over the country to enjoy the debauchery and freedom of circuit parties. With these events, however, lie certain risks, if you are planning on circuiting, consider the following safety tips to ensure you take away nothing but happy memories.
Use protection: Surrounded by so much wildness and fun, it is hardly surprising that circuit parties have become synonymous with casual encounters and one time hook ups. A survey of circuit party attendees revealed that 28% reported having had unprotected sex at least once during the weekend. While we encourage you to relax, let your hair down and explore your deepest darkest desires, we also encourage you to do so safely. PrEP is a good strategy and an additional layer of protection for these types of scenarios. Use a condom; don’t walk away with an STI, that’s not the kind of souvenir you want.
Drugs: Circuit parties are notoriously full of drugs, perhaps its the higher income, professional attendees that they tend to attract but a recent survey shows over 85% of circuit party guests use at least on recreational drug, with the average user consuming four different drugs over the whole event. The ideal situation would obviously be to avoid drugs completely as there are many risks involved in consuming illicit substances, namely that you don’t have any guarantee as to the contents. But if you must partake, try to consume just one at a time so you can control your consumption more easily.
Leave your valuables at home: A huge group of hyped up, intoxicated, relaxed and comfortable men unfortunately makes for prime pickings for those seeking to relieve you of your valuables. Make sure you don’t take anything with you that you wouldn’t be willing to part with. Just take the cash that you need (plus a bit extra for emergencies), your ID and your phone. If your phone is an important lifeline to you, move your sim into a cheap phone and take that with you instead. Also remember to back-up your phone before you go, in case you loose it or have to replace it.
Buddy system: Flashback to your school days! Of course you don’t need to stick with your buddy all night long, what we mean by this is simply make sure you know where your friends are and they know where you are. At least that way, if something does happen to one of you, it won’t take to long for someone to realise. Make sure you stay in touch, don’t wander off on your own, and if you are going to go off and have a little private fun, let someone know.
Circuit parties are some of the greatest events in the gay calendar and can make for some of the wildest, most fun and most memorable experiences of your life. Make sure that all you take away is new friends and great memories by sticking to our tips on how to circuit safely.