DocWatson (docwatson42) wrote,

Fan convention survival

Here are some resources on how to survive at a fan convention:

Arisia Survival Guide and Packing List—a collaborative manual for/from the Boston SF con

Science Fiction Convention Survival Kit for Neofans/Newbies—written before cell phones became common, this is still a great resource

Anime Convention Articles and Guides at—various useful how-to guides

Five Things They Never Tell You About Attending Conventions

Rostler's Rules [of Costuming] (The "No Peanut Butter" Rule)—the do's and don't's

• A post by SciFiGrl47 in the Anime Boston forums thread "how much money should a first time anime boston timer bring?" (30 November 2011):

I don't think there's an "answer" to this question. There's only some criteria to consider:

1. What do you plan to do?

Are you at con just to go to panels and events? Are you not interested in the dealer's room or AA? Are you determined to win something at the charity auction? Will you bring your own food or eat out, and if so, where? Have you promised to bring back something for anyone else, or planning on finding a gift for a friend? How are you getting to AB? Where are you parking? Remember to factor in things like gas, tolls, tips, and a few dollars in case you desperately need that Dunkies run first thing in the morning.

2. What can you afford?

If any con, or any trip, is important to you, consider opening a savings account at your bank, or at a different bank. If you're the sort that spends freely, or impulsively, then it's sometimes helpful to have an account that you can't access at an ATM or online. If you start saving now, you could have a nest egg in place by the time the New England con season kicks off. If you don't, you need to balance what you WANT with what you can AFFORD. If you don't have the money, and don't have any way to pay for it, don't do it. Really.

3. In a worst case scenario, how are you getting home/eating/staying safe?

Please, PLEASE consider this. If you're a Boston resident, make sure you've got T fare, or cab fare, and keep it away from your spending money. If you're from outside of the area, don't assume that someone else will be able to get you home. There is nothing worse than realizing that everyone in the car has no money, and there's no gas in the car. Don't be that person. Keep twenty bucks as emergency funds, and as tempting as it is, don't spend it unless you've got no choice. Even though you plan on bringing your own food, have some cash in case your snacks are lost, tossed, or inadequate. You know what's not fun? Trying to do a full day of con with an empty belly. Stress, excitement and lack of food lead to fainting otaku, and nothing's less fun than holding up everyone in your party as you wait for the ambulance. Because we will call the ambulance.

Build a budget using these questions as a guideline. Be realistic, be practical, and study everything we've got available ahead of time. Use the schedule and the forums to plan your trip. For both money and fun, it'll be better the more planning you manage to do ahead of time. 8)


And what not to do/be:

"Retail: The Wrath of Cat Piss Man" by Paul T. Riddell

"Otaku soup" 1 and 2.

"The Rise and Fall of the Giant Boskones" (including the Boskone from Hell)

Last updated 24 January 2017.
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