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Not trying to shoot you down or anything similar, but 5 miles isn't that bad really... ? :( No... I guess I'm just odd lol :x

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The thing is, people reserve rooms now before knowing full plans for Otakon. What happens is, 2 weeks out from the con, they realize they can't go. They drop their reservations, but it is too late to salvage the room block - so you guys are stuck with paying premium rates since the block is closed. This in turn makes Otakon look bad, as people aren't using the room blocks that were originally contracted.

So you folks reserve responsibly. Have fun, enjoy.

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I don't think that's fair or entirely accurate. Maybe some people camp room reservations, but I'm certain that a lot of cancellations are people who have had something come up, and there's nothing wrong with that. There's also nothing wrong with reserving a room for a group of friends and then being forced to cancel that reservation if your roommates are unable to attend. Things happen outside of Otakon--cars break down, surprise bills show up, accidents happen, etc.--and if a group reserves a room in October only to find out in July that this or that friend had a major, valid reason to back out, the person who bit the bullet and reserved the room might not be able to afford a sudden hike in price. I don't think someone should be punished because of others' situations--it's perfectly acceptable to me that if Joe Schmoe is coming to Otakon with five friends and reserves a room for $200/night in October but finds out in mid-July that three of the people in the room are unable to make it due to a car accident or something, he and the other two ought to be allowed to bail on their room and find someplace that's within their budget, because a $100 price increase might be a little hard to make up in only two or three weeks, especially if some of the roommates are younger.

tl;dr version: It sucks when people camp room reservations because it ruins it for everyone else, but not everyone's in it for the cheapest option out there, and sometimes room reservations are canceled for legitimate reasons, so it seems really unfair to punish those who have a real problem.

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My personal opinion is: Otakon should never announce their next dates until they have at least the con rates set at most of the near-by hotels.

Also, they should also add that people have to reserve a room for at least 2 nights minimum, to qualify for the con rate, and will get penalized (pay an equivalent of one night), for canceling their reservations two weeks before the con date.

First, I'm sorry that the hotels situation is the factor that might drive you away from attending Otakon in the future. We did have a fairly low rate at the Holiday Inn Express at the Stadiums, and it even offered a free shuttle to and from the BCC. But very few people actually used it. To the point where it is not worth contracting blocks at that hotel this year.

As for the hotels before announcement, that was the plan. You have two factors here: 1) Hotels have varying policies about when to open reservations. 2) The contracts are in place (although unsigned), the rooms blocked out until they could be imported into the system. Every hotel sales rep I spoke to at the end of July told me they weren't going to start booking Aug 2008 rooms until August 2007 at the earliest.

The Sheraton Inner Harbor already utilizes a 2 night minimum to qualify for the convention rate. Once upon a time, the hotels charged a nominal deposit for each reservation. I think they got slapped and decided it wasn't worth doing anymore - so now everyone can reserve rooms without consequence.

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Hmm, maybe info shouldn't be listed for all of those places yet...

I just called Holiday Inn and they WILL NOT accept reservations for Otakon until next week. (even their website says you can't make reservations until 50 weeks in advance, which is next week, lookit that.) They're still entering it into their system, blah blah, and it wont be finalized until after the weekend (they suppose). This is right from speaking to their manager, Michael. So. there you go.

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Dittos on the Sheraton Inner Harbor...I just spoke with someone in group sales (reservations directed me there) and she initially said that the contract hadn't been signed, then said that it was signed but not loaded into the system, and to try calling back next week.

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Dittos on the Sheraton Inner Harbor...I just spoke with someone in group sales (reservations directed me there) and she initially said that the contract hadn't been signed, then said that it was signed but not loaded into the system, and to try calling back next week.
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Yea the Hyatt basically told me they have the Otakon group in their system but no rates, so booking is impossible.

The lady I spoke too said it might be 2-3 weeks before rates are up. I appreciate trying to get us info asap, but I'm starting to get tired of calling and getting nowhere.

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Hrm, it seems the Holiday Inn's regular rate is the same as their "con" rate. At $200 a night, I don't think that's still such a bad deal.

Though I do suspect they'll have lower con rates next year -- that is, in 2009. The new Hilton is contractually obligated to provide a lot of rooms (think several hundred, maybe as many as 600) at a very reasonable price. That price is not excessively cheap, but it is supposed to be around $160 or so. Given all the benefits of the new hotel, the other hotels are going to have to lower prices to compete.

Well, maybe. Even if all 720 rooms are filled with five people, that's still less than 4000 people. Everybody else will still be clamoring for the cheapest, closest place, and that's still the Days Inn.

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Yea the Hyatt basically told me they have the Otakon group in their system but no rates, so booking is impossible.

The lady I spoke too said it might be 2-3 weeks before rates are up. I appreciate trying to get us info asap, but I'm starting to get tired of calling and getting nowhere.

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real simple reason for the increase in hotel costs....having crowds of kids like in that youtube video over at the old Wyndham crowding 20-30 folks into their room and overflowing into the hallway..standing on the skywalk and yelling..thinking it was hilarious to shove the complimentary phone tables into the elevators. If I was a hotel and had to deal with hordes of unruly kids like that, I'd up the cost of the hotel rooms too.

It's always the small handful of rotten apples that end up making it harder for the other 22,970 folks to get good deals......

though it could also just be common greed/inflation?

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I created a troubleshooting guide for hotels here:

/viewtopic.php?t=13115" target="_blank">http://board.otakon.com/viewtopic.php?t=13115

This is coupled with updated hotel info here:

/viewtopic.php?t=13110" target="_blank">http://board.otakon.com/viewtopic.php?t=13110

I'll continue to field questions via pm or on these threads as much as possible, and port major questions over to the troubles guide.

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Now after actually seeing all the prices... I won't be staying the harbor again. I'm still going to do my group, but I think we're bringing two cars anyway, so making sure people get back and forth from the hotels won't be a big deal, plus I'd have to park in town anyway. I've stayed 20 minutes outside of the area the last four years, and I think I'm gonna have to do it again. ^^; (*sigh* The life of a cheap college student.)

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I don't see any need for people to be booking rooms this early.

Whatever happened to calmly waiting until Otakon is sorted out everything with the hotels and the hotels have everything in their systems? Hell, can’t people wait until Otakon even opens pre reg?

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The thing is, people reserve rooms now before knowing full plans for Otakon. What happens is, 2 weeks out from the con, they realize they can't go. They drop their reservations, but it is too late to salvage the room block - so you guys are stuck with paying premium rates since the block is closed. This in turn makes Otakon look bad, as people aren't using the room blocks that were originally contracted.

So you folks reserve responsibly. Have fun, enjoy.

I'm sorry if this comes out sounding bitter, but: Do you think people give a damn about making Otakon look bad?

I know there are others like myself who will kindly wait until you guys have the whole hotel rooms situation straighten out. But there are just too many others out there who's just interested in only wherehousing these rooms, reguardless of the rates, because they're so sure of themselves that they're going to have more than a half-dozen room-mates to split the cost.

Then suddenly, as the con's date draws closer, some of those room-mates that they were so depending on, decides that they can't come to the con, afterall, or decides to bunk with others. Then, these room holders suddenly have these room reservations that they can no longer afford, so out of despairation, they come to these forums practically begging for room-mates. If they can't get enough people together, they cancel their reservations, and in turn, start looking to become room-mates for others who still have their rooms.

My personal opinion is: Otakon should never announce their next dates until they have at least the con rates set at most of the near-by hotels.

Also, they should also add that people have to reserve a room for at least 2 nights minimum, to qualify for the con rate, and will get penalized (pay an equivalent of one night), for canceling their reservations two weeks before the con date.

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We've known about the list for quite some time now.

I don't see any need for people to be booking rooms this early.

Whatever happened to calmly waiting until Otakon is sorted out everything with the hotels and the hotels have everything in their systems? Hell, can’t people wait until Otakon even opens pre reg?

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You know some times people get a room and try and fill it because they arn't sure they will get a room for Otakon and arn't a part of a big group. I actually got a room for Otakon two years ago and tried to fill it because I wan't sure I would find people to room with the next year. Plus while I do enjoy staying with people. I have been in rooms where the rooms holder is a nazi about rules. I had one that wanted everyone back in the room by 11pm. I had to back out because I don't want a mother to sit and tell me what to do.
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We took on extra people at the last minute this year, and I'm never doing that again. x_o While it wasn't in my room, the other room I was running had some serious problems with one of the unknowns brought in.

I had never had problems before this year, but I guess it only takes once to burn that bridge.

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Though I do suspect they'll have lower con rates next year -- that is, in 2009. The new Hilton is contractually obligated to provide a lot of rooms (think several hundred, maybe as many as 600) at a very reasonable price. That price is not excessively cheap, but it is supposed to be around $160 or so. Given all the benefits of the new hotel, the other hotels are going to have to lower prices to compete.

*Drool* Sign me up. For now, off to see if the Radisson has any rooms left, or if I stick to the original reservation.

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I had my room at the Days reserved on the 15th at $169/night.

I still find it rather strange that the con rate is MORE expensive..

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You know some times people get a room and try and fill it because they arn't sure they will get a room for Otakon and arn't a part of a big group. I actually got a room for Otakon two years ago and tried to fill it because I wan't sure I would find people to room with the next year. Plus while I do enjoy staying with people. I have been in rooms where the rooms holder is a nazi about rules. I had one that wanted everyone back in the room by 11pm. I had to back out because I don't want a mother to sit and tell me what to do.
I have been to 17 conventions so far. All but 4 have required me getting accommodation somewhere. For 5 conventions, I have had pre arranged accommodation, either though a group booking that the convention ran themselves (similar to the Otakon staff block booking) or because someone I was going with booking the room.

For those other 8 conventions, I have ‘attached’ myself to a group that were looking for someone to fill a space in their room. I have never once had a problem getting a room. I sorted out my Otakon 06 room a week before I left on my trip that year. 3 weeks before Otakon. I’m fairly sure that if I needed to, I’d be able to find a room, at the Otakon rate, 2 days before Otakon 08.

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Bear in mind however that if it's with a group then it's based generosity alone, not including the helpfull split in board, just the jesture to open up space you might have planned to keep it just you and your friend(s). I may be the crazy one here, it just burns me up when these type of things are expected.

It's not safe and blah blah blah but when I was in the Air Force I picked up several hitch hikers/homeless/whatever and got them a few hundred mile in the direction they were going before I had to take a different direction, and most of them were gratefull, not that I was expecting praise, it's just the indignence that would get to me. One guy, not 5 minutes after I picked him up on the road, he told me (word for word) "yah when I wanna go see my folks up there I can always count on a free ride from people like you on highways like these"... I kind shook my head and querveshly said "ahh heh yup", but whatever, we all have different looks on things, tomato toma(h)to, etc, etc

The point is I think you've been very fortunate to have the stars allign for you all this time, but I think it makes perfect sense to plan well ahead of time unless you've an ace or 2 up your sleeve... just no need to point out that you feel you're above the people who prepare way ahead of time, not saying you specificly stated you're above them of course, just for arguments sake of making a point... no point pun there btw...

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Bear in mind however that if it's with a group then it's based generosity alone, not including the helpfull split in board, just the jesture to open up space you might have planned to keep it just you and your friend(s). I may be the crazy one here, it just burns me up when these type of things are expected.

It's not safe and blah blah blah but when I was in the Air Force I picked up several hitch hikers/homeless/whatever and got them a few hundred mile in the direction they were going before I had to take a different direction, and most of them were gratefull, not that I was expecting praise, it's just the indignence that would get to me. One guy, not 5 minutes after I picked him up on the road, he told me (word for word) "yah when I wanna go see my folks up there I can always count on a free ride from people like you on highways like these"... I kind shook my head and querveshly said "ahh heh yup", but whatever, we all have different looks on things, tomato toma(h)to, etc, etc

The point is I think you've been very fortunate to have the stars allign for you all this time, but I think it makes perfect sense to plan well ahead of time unless you've an ace or 2 up your sleeve... just no need to point out that you feel you're above the people who prepare way ahead of time, not saying you specificly stated you're above them of course, just for arguments sake of making a point... no point pun there btw...

o.O I think you misunderstood what I said. :?
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I had my room at the Days reserved on the 15th at $169/night.

I still find it rather strange that the con rate is MORE expensive..

How did you ever slip past the reservation nazis :?:

Must have been sitting there looking over the atomic clock to hit the website while C-Rack rates were still available. Too bad our contract likely reads "at prevailing rates when signed."

Before returning the fall-back room to the wild, are there any plans of having a contract with Hampton-Camden, preferably for about $40-60 below rates?

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I had my room at the Days reserved on the 15th at $169/night.

I still find it rather strange that the con rate is MORE expensive..

Did you use an AAA discount? I know some people got cheaper rates from that. Otherwise, their normal rates are $179 for two people, $189 for three, or $199 for four. If you reserved under a 2 person rate just to be cheaper, you run the risk of getting a smaller room at check-in.

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I do wanna ask something, I can understand wanting to be near the center and all without the use of running gas, but with the prices of the rooms so high, does it ever bother you guys that so much is spent on just one room, even for those of a group of three or four? I hope I am not being rude about this, just wondering. Techincally the highest we have spent on a room for coventions was $139 a night for ACEN.

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What I pay for a hotel close to the con would equal out what I would pay for a cheaper hotel farther away, plus the cost of transportation. The convenience alone of walking across the street to refresh in my hotel is worth any amount of money.

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It is nice to be able to walk across the street if you need to get back to your room for anything. Not to mention parking can be a pain if you are trying to drive in every day.

It is, if it was only use going to the convention. If it was just me and my sister then yeah we would stay near the convention. The only reason we are not near the convention because our mother comes with us and she doesnt attend the con. So staying in the area of Downtown there is kind of pointless cause where my mom goes is not near the con. To be honest if and when we go out to Otakon on our own, we most likely will be staying near the convention or when they finish the hotel connected to the center then we will stay there.

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It is nice to be able to walk across the street if you need to get back to your room for anything. Not to mention parking can be a pain if you are trying to drive in every day.

It is, if it was only use going to the convention. If it was just me and my sister then yeah we would stay near the convention. The only reason we are not near the convention because our mother comes with us and she doesnt attend the con. So staying in the area of Downtown there is kind of pointless cause where my mom goes is not near the con. To be honest if and when we go out to Otakon on our own, we most likely will be staying near the convention or when they finish the hotel connected to the center then we will stay there.

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It is nice to be able to walk across the street if you need to get back to your room for anything. Not to mention parking can be a pain if you are trying to drive in every day.

It is, if it was only use going to the convention. If it was just me and my sister then yeah we would stay near the convention. The only reason we are not near the convention because our mother comes with us and she doesnt attend the con. So staying in the area of Downtown there is kind of pointless cause where my mom goes is not near the con. To be honest if and when we go out to Otakon on our own, we most likely will be staying near the convention or when they finish the hotel connected to the center then we will stay there.

If I had a free ride to and from the BCC every day, I'd probably save the money on the hotel as well.

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It would be nice to put another person or two in my room to split down the cost a bit, but seeing as my girlfriend wants to go, I doubt that'll happen.

And it's a very good point that you can just walk right across the street to the BCC. Now we don't have to get up so early to walk and still get to all the different panels on time (The OCRemix panel was at 9AM and we missed it... T.T) and if we forget anything at the room, it's no problem.

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