Jump to content

Things to bring to Otakon


Recommended Posts

Since the board will be gone soon, figured I would start my yearly thread one last time.

 

  • An umbrella for when those wicked thunderstorms come through.
  • Cell phone charger
  • Your medications
  • A wide brim hat to keep the Sun off your face.
  • Sunscreen if you will be stuck outside for extended periods. Remember to reapply when needed and don't skip your ears. (Just saw a mini video from a cancer doctor who said ears are a frequent spot for melanoma)
  • A debit card or credit card. (Convention center is cashless as are some local stores. Cashiers [are they debitiers now?] should be able to swipe chipless prepaid cards on their terminal, but ask before ordering)
  • Electrolytes. (First week of Summer and it is already way too hot)
  • 2 pairs of shoes (let one pair air out between days 🤣)
  • Small water bottle
  • Ear plugs (personal preference based on volume levels these days)
  • A light hoodie and/or pants, if you are prone to getting cold in air conditioning. (Had to don my hat a few times in the convention center when the cold air was coming straight down on my head)

 

  • Thanks 3
Link to post
Share on other sites

Sorry about the test post above.  I'd written the stuff below, then the "Submit Reply" button didn't work.

I hope the board won't be gone soon!  Even though it's not very active, I still really like visiting here!

Excellent tips for bringing things to Otakon, Clutch!

May I add, along with 2 pairs of shoes -- please have shoes that are comfortable.  Lots of walking at Otakon.

Binder clip, for hotel room curtains that don't close all the way and leave a gap.  Just clip the curtains together.

Bandaids and nail clipper (had a nail tear a little once at a show, and it got caught on lots of things).  Some years ago here on the board, I mentioned a nail clipper (since it has a little nail file too), but forgot to say that Bandaids are actually more handy when it first happens, since you can just cover up the entire nail.

Lots of large plastic bags and ziplock bags for trash in hotel rooms, and at Otakon for things you buy.  I've actually given away two bags to people who bought posters, but didn't have a bag or anything to put them in while walking around Otakon.  Actually, a tote bag might be handy too for things bought at Otakon.

In a ziplock bag, I bring some paper towels or napkins, plastic forks, knives and spoons to Otakon -- just in case the food places are out of an item temporarily, or a fork drops while trying to find a table to eat at.  Haven't had to use these except a few times -- but wow was it ever handy to have them!

Printed, back-up information about reservations for your train, plane, hotel, or taxi, phone numbers, confirmation numbers, addresses, directions, etc., just in case your phone doesn't get good reception at a particular area and you can't get to the information temporarily.

Information about hotels in the area (their addresses and phone numbers), just in case your hotel goofs up the reservation, or you can't stand the hotel and want to stay somewhere else.  I've never had to use this list, but thought it'd be handy anyway.

If you have reservations at a hotel that's not your first choice (like, not at a hotel closer to the WEWCC), you might want to call their reservation department each day to see if they have any room cancellations.  If they do, you can reserve that room and be in the hotel you prefer.  (This happened to me once, and it was terrific to switch to the hotel I wanted.)

If you can, have extra room in your luggage for items you find at Otakon that you didn't think you'd buy.  That way you'll have space for extra goodies from Otakon!

 Masks, and covid vaccination card -- none of the few conventions I've been to at the WEWCC throughout the year has required these, but just in case it might be handy to have them.  I still see a few people with masks at the WEWCC, but most people don't wear them.  (P.S.  Most of the metro stations have masks for free, but not all of them.)

Bring more money than you think you'll need.  Better to have too much, than too little, while traveling.

Also, a while back I wrote about the bird poop on the escalator handrails at the Mt. Vernon Square metro (the escalators right next to the WEWCC).  I've noticed that they clean the handrails pretty good when there's an event at the WEWCC.  Other days, sometimes the bird poop is pretty obvious.  So, please watch where you put your hand on the escalator handrails.

Sorry for the long post.

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I take the plastic zippable containers which bed sheets come in and use them for toiletries. The first time the toothpaste, deodorant, shampoo, hand lotion, body wash, etc. pops open in your bag, you will wish there was something separating them. There are probably small, clear, makeup bags that zip up which serve the same purpose. Also helps keep the volume of what you bring down to a more manageable size. Travel size toiletries cost more than regular containers, but the space savings are worth it in the suitcase. Make a point of using up any extra travel size things you buy after getting home. If you are not a frequent traveler, it is better to use the stuff up than let it sit for a year and dry out or break down into its components.

On 6/24/2024 at 1:11 PM, EdKitten said:

Also, a while back I wrote about the bird poop on the escalator handrails at the Mt. Vernon Square metro (the escalators right next to the WEWCC).  I've noticed that they clean the handrails pretty good when there's an event at the WEWCC.  Other days, sometimes the bird poop is pretty obvious.  So, please watch where you put your hand on the escalator handrails.

Sorry for the long post.

I found small packets of hand sanitizer (1 1/4 inch square), I think Purell makes them. Chuck a few in the shirt pocket to have handy if I feel the situation calls for it. They also sell travel packs of 10 wet wipes or even singles. Always think like Adrian Monk when going on a trip, to avoid getting sick. For example, a coworker in another State just came back from a cruise and tested positive for COVID. 🤒 🤮 🤧

Have a small sewing kit in the suitcase too for emergency repairs. Just remember not to use the hot pink thread on your dark blue shorts. 😛

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

After all these years, I had never thought of bringing binder clips to hold the blackout curtains tight. That's inspired.

 

As well as what others have suggested, I also like to bring a cardboard shipping tube (One of the wider ones). That way if I buy art or posters from the Artist Alley or Dealers Room I can roll them and keep them in the tube and they won't get wrinkled or creased by accident.

  • Thanks 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

I suggest planning on a larger spending amount than normal. Given current prices, you could go through your allotted funds easily. My thinking is that prices on food will be 50% higher(or more) than last year.

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 7/6/2024 at 6:45 PM, Clutch said:

I suggest planning on a larger spending amount than normal. Given current prices, you could go through your allotted funds easily. My thinking is that prices on food will be 50% higher(or more) than last year.

I think 50% is too high - that would price the stuff I bought last year ~$22. Even with a 'captive' audience I don't think they could get away with that high a price jump.

As for things to bring, stuff I personally bring that hasn't been mentioned:

- tea bags (cold brewed): I put it in my water bottle while I'm walking around the con. I'm not a coffee drinker, and want a medium for caffeine delivery.

- Cold-eeze / immune boosters: I haven't caught the con plague in years, haven't had a cold since before the lockdown, and don't intend to get anything this year.

- something to read: Likely some issues of The Dragon magazine archive on pdf on my phone. I used to bring a book, but w/ the bag checks I've tried to travel really light.

- pen and paper: I tend to make notes on the various panels I go to, and things I see in Artists' Alley and the Dealers' Room. I'm old enough to like having a physical copy of these notes for future reference.

As an aside, I'd love to bring these along, but I'd be afraid something would happen to them while I was there. That and trying to keep the chain from getting tangled all the time would be a hassle. 

IMG_20240707_091711a.jpg.21b7251dea871103fd8249a68a3f4ae9.jpg

Edited by Revan
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, Revan said:

I think 50% is too high - that would price the stuff I bought last year ~$22. Even with a 'captive' audience I don't think they could get away with that high a price jump.

As for things to bring, stuff I personally bring that hasn't been mentioned:

- tea bags (cold brewed): I put it in my water bottle while I'm walking around the con. I'm not a coffee drinker, and want a medium for caffeine delivery.

- Cold-eeze / immune boosters: I haven't caught the con plague in years, haven't had a cold since before the lockdown, and don't intend to get anything this year.

- something to read: Likely some issues of The Dragon magazine archive on pdf on my phone. I used to bring a book, but w/ the bag checks I've tried to travel really light.

- pen and paper: I tend to make notes on the various panels I go to, and things I see in Artists' Alley and the Dealers' Room. I'm old enough to like having a physical copy of these notes for future reference.

As an aside, I'd love to bring these along, but I'd be afraid something would happen to them while I was there. That and trying to keep the chain from getting tangled all the time would be a hassle. 

IMG_20240707_091711a.jpg.21b7251dea871103fd8249a68a3f4ae9.jpg

I did that on my 16th year of the con. I felt like the suitcase with the stickers that shows that it went around the world a few times.

I still have all my badges, but I just don't feel like looking for them right now (while we're in the middle of a heat wave).

 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

I always go to the convention center most of the time carrying my backpack which includes:

 

An umbrella

My laptop

Power strip

USB cables

My multi USB port power block (to charge phone and/or tablet)

sugar-free powdered drink mix

Drinking bottle

About 3 or 4 reusable shopping bags

Pen and pad

 

 

 

 

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Deodorant

A decently sized water bottle

Nuum or similar hydration tablets or powder for electrolytes

earplugs

hand sanitizer

A generously-sized poster tube and/or plastic sleeves to put signed glossies etc in

snacks -- think protein bars, nuts, dried fruit, jerky

sunscreen

Excedrin and similar pain relievers

charging block if your phone starts to die on you

Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Aresef said:

Nuum or similar hydration tablets or powder for electrolytes

On the local morning show with the channel's news team, they had someone on hawking small bottles of pickle juice for electrolytes. Some designer brand. I would be curious to try one, but not pay a ton for it.

 

3 hours ago, Aresef said:

earplugs

I always have ear plugs in my pocket. Loud noises are painful to me, and movie volumes these days are insane. Te local AMC theater went out of business and was bought by a local entertainment company. They reopened half of the movie rooms and I went to see Godzilla Minus One there. Even with my earplugs in, the volume was painful. I should have walked out, but was really enjoying the movie. Ended up with a low level ringing in my ears since then. My advice to all is to wear earplugs, especially if you sit near the speakers in the halls at the convention center. You can't get your hearing back or cure ringing once it starts. Protect your hearing at all times!

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.