These are not really rules but just nuggets of wisdom accumulated from 22+ conventions and 8 years of cosplaying:
-IF YOU DID NOT PREORDER A TICKET (or if you are picking up a pre-order on the day of the actual convention) , ARRIVE EARLY. I cannot stress this enough. There are times where arriving at 10:00 means you wait in line for two hours and miss out on the con until 12 pm! The earlier you get there, the earlier you get in! Also bring a pen in case they hand out registration forms in the lineup.
-Be aware of your surroundings at all times and keep personal belongings close so they do not hit people or get stolen. The dealer's room and other indoor part of the con are extremely packed and the con grounds are going to be crowded. Try to avoid stepping into pictures, bumping into people or tripping.
-Go to con aid if you need help. They're around for a reason! Try to not bother security with inquiries because they have other things to do.
-When getting your picture taken, put your bag where you can see it. You can keep an eye on it, especially if there's a lot of people who want your picture at that moment.
-BE PATIENT. There's a lot of people at the con besides you and everyone is trying to have a good time. There may be a long line or an hour long wait for something, but just remember that everyone in that line has to wait too.
-Take advantage of the convention's shuttle. It loops all day long between the three buildings if you have a pass to ride it. You can get on at the front of the double tree, the sheraton or by the lineups for tickets at the congress centre.
-Read the schedule and plan your days before you go. The con releases a PDF of the schedule two weeks before, so map it out. Ask friends what they're doing and schedule in time for food and breaks. Mark places on your maps and make sure you're prompt.
-Plan a meeting spot. If you have friends all over the con but you all want to hang out at a certain time, or if you are in the dealer's room and a wave of people separates you from your best friend and the wifi in the convention will not let a text go through or your phone dies, a meeting spot is a great place to meet back up. Some good meeting spots are: the flag poles, the south building entrance, by the outdoor stage on the opposite side of foot traffic, the low wall in front of the double tree or at either side of the big bridge.
- PLAN YOUR SPENDING. A great way to do this is to total your money the days before you go and divide it up. Friday has the most selection, Saturday has the biggest crowd and Sunday has the most sales. Put the money into three envelopes marked with their days and put them in a safe place. Put extra money in an envelope called food and make sure it covers all three days. Do NOT use Sunday's money as extra for Friday. (You can do the reverse though, if you have leftover money!)
-If you are in a room you may want to consider a potluck with your room mates. Everyone brings one meal and one snack to share with everyone in the room. This can eliminate the need for food money at all as long as everyone chips in. (Make sure you learn allergies and plan who is bringing what beforehand though. If its your only source of food you want to be sure you'll be able to eat it. It would be bad luck to be starving on the saturday night with all your money spent and all the restaurants full only to discover you're having Surströmming sandwhiches.)
-BROWSE BEFORE YOU BUY. Someone may have what you want for cheaper a few booths down. Someone might have a shirt you like better than that one just on the other side of the dealer's room. Yes, that my little pony plushy is home made but its $200. What's to say there's something else you won't like better in 15 minutes. (After one lap of the dealer's room if you can remember exactly what you wanted it might be worth your money!)
-If what you want is in high demand or is a one-of-a-kind item (like that my little pony plushy I mentioned above) ask the vendor to reserve it for you. Tell them you will be back after a lap of the dealer's room and then decide if you want it or not when you get out.
-If you are an IMPULSE BUYER than a con can be tough. Have a friend chaperone you in the dealer's room and make them hold onto your money so they can help you get over the urges to spend and keep you moving along from booth to booth, as well as keep track of what you really liked. They can also help you put things down when you get grabby. (Impulse buying is an expensive bad habit where you see something and you have to have it then and there and nothing will change your mind until you buy it, walk away, see something else you want and then have to have it. It is a really good way to blow your money. This buddy system requires trust and previous knowledge so don't just pick a random person.)
-Do not try to cross the grassy area infront of the TCC by going through the ditch. Its a bayou and it eats children and shoes.
-Wear sunscreen, even if the sun isn't shining. It peeks out sometimes or the weather can change and a burn is the last thing you want.
-Try to sleep. Try to get at least 6 hours each night. Or, try to sleep a full 9-12 hours the day before the con, at least 6 hours on the friday night, 4 hours on the saturday night and another 9-12 when you go home on sunday.
-There is a pre-reg pickup on thursday. Try to get there early so you don't need to wait longer than usual once the door opens. Bring any weapons that need to be checked, too. GROUP LEADERS can pick up for their whole group, or you can bring friends' confirmations and pick their badges up. NOTE: Once the badge has been claimed, it is your job to get it to whom it needs to go to. Con will not replace lost or unclaimed badges.
Note: the weapon's wielder should be the one to get their weapon checked. there is a face photo that is documented with the weapon.
-Speaking of badges, make sure its visible. If its messing up your cosplay, find a pocket you can tuck it into when a picture's being taken. Also make sure its ready and face up when passing into the dealer's room or artist's alley as it keeps the line moving.
-Arrive early to all panels and events you want to go to. Some places, half an hour early will do. Others may require longer. Its all about room size and availability.
-Bring a seperate bag for art. Lots of art vendors do not supply bags. A plastic bag with cardboard in it, or a manilla envelope will work well.
-Make sure you have enough hands to carry your things. Drop bags off in your car or hotel room as you go.
-Take breaks. Rushing all day isn't good for longevity at conventions. You'll exhaust yourself. Sit down on the grass and talk, go to your hotel room for a twenty minute nap or a mid-day shower or sit down at a food place or a panel for a spell.
-If you're planning to eat out at a restaurant for dinner (Montana's, etc.), make sure to arrive early. Many eateries don't allow reservations on con weekend, so its really luck and chance.
-Bring energizing snacks! Granola bars, fruit, and nuts (indulge in the hotel room for both), are rather hard to procure. It'll save you a lot of money/time to bring your own snacks, plus it gives you a boost that potato chips won't!
-Beware of over indulgence with new treats. Some japanese or imported candy/ food may taste delicious, but it can be a bit of a shock to the stomach if you've never eaten it before. Try it and eat it sparingly to avoid unwanted side effects.
Some places to eat
There are a lot more than just this, but some popular ones are:
-Grand's Chinese Cuisine
If you have a car, drive from the convention. You are much more likely to get a table and eat quickly.
Last edited by Rei-Azalia : 05-05-2014 at 08:46 AM.