San Diego Comic Con 2018 will be here in just ten short days – we are almost to the single digits here people!! I thought it might be helpful to list out some of my favorite SDCC tips and tricks to help you better prepare for your own amazing time at the show! So if this is your first time attending, or if you’re an SDCC veteran – knowing these small and simple things can help your entire weekend go smoothly.
SHOES: Bring comfortable walking shoes – you will be on your feet for a lot of the day. There is so much to see and do not only inside of the convention center but also throughout the entire Gaslamp District in Historic Downtown San Diego. So you will be walking, a lot. I don’t think I’ve ever made it out of there without walking at least 12 miles in a day – it’s normally closer to about 15. So save your super cute shoes and sandals for those after-parties and night events and stick with closed toed walking shoes for the majority of your day. If you plan on buying new shoes for the con, do it NOW. If you need to break new shoes in you don’t want to be doing that at comic-con, your feet will hate you. So if new shoes are on the docket before your SDCC adventure begins – buy them today and start breaking them in over the next week. Trust me, your feet will thank you for it.
MONEY: If you plan on using your debit card to be making purchases for all those amazing exclusives and hard to find items that you spot in the exhibit hall – CALL YOUR BANK NOW. Let them know that you will be going on vacation, where you will be, and that you’ll be pulling out that card quite a bit to make amazing purchases. A lot of people experience account freezes during SDCC – which means you have to step aside in line, get on the phone with you bank, and let them know that it’s really you making all these purchases and not some fraud going on. I can’t guarantee that calling them first will prevent this from happening, we call every year but without fail every year we have to make a 2nd call during SDCC. Secondly, make sure that you have some cash on you as well. Sure, technology makes accepting credit cards super easy now, but you don’t want to be completely heartbroken if the one item you really want you find at a cash only booth and the line for the ATM is almost as long as Hall H.
FOOD: Don’t rely on convention center food for all of your meals. Trust me, your body won’t like you and your wallet won’t either. My advice, hit up a local grocery store as one of your first stops – get things that you can easily keep in your hotel room and pack your own breakfast, lunch, and snacks for throughout the day. Sure getting an overpriced mediocre pretzel in a pinch works, but you don’t want to be relying on that all weekend. Save yourself the money and of course the time by packing your own things to snack on. Remember, you’ll be at Comic-Con, so there is a line for just about everything. Even the Starbucks can have lines upwards of 40 minutes long for a beverage – plan ahead and spend your time in a line that you really want to be in instead of a food line.
POWER: If you haven’t already invested in an external battery pack for your phone, do so now. Sure, there are outlets in the convention center – but you don’t want to rely on having to find an open one and babysit your phone at it. On the other hand, you don’t want to just let your phone die and miss out on that one photo that you’ll never get a chance to capture again. Trust me, these are worth their weight in gold – I usually bring 2 externals chargers that can re-juice my phone 3 times before it needs some power, they are worth the extra money upfront. Another comment about phones, do not expect free wifi anywhere in the convention center or surrounding areas to be great, even the cell service can be iffy with so many people using it at once. For this reason, never rely only on the SDCC app for information and panel schedules, always have a backup.
LINES: There are lines everywhere at SDCC, that is just how it works. So here a few quick notes about being in a line. First up, stop worrying about the lines, you will have to stand in lines all weekend long, that is why you need to decide what you are willing to wait in a line for. Make friends in the line! Seriously, I have people that I chat with every single year now and I only met them because we were in line at the same time. Chances are you’ll meet some pretty amazing people while you’re waiting in line and those are experiences that are well worth the wait. Know what line you are standing in – there are a lot of lines when it comes to SDCC and especially on the exhibit floor. To save yourself the headache of wasting time for something you didn’t want, ask those around you what the line is for and make sure that is the line you really want to be in. Lines get capped really quickly, move around, and you might not get in for the first few tries – so have a backup plan but always, always make sure you are in the line you want to be. Something that goes hand in hand with this – don’t be a jerk. Between camping out for panels, trying to score autographs/exclusives, or even just waiting in line for food – there are a LOT of people at San Diego Comic Con every year. You aren’t going to get to see everything you want to, or do everything that you want to – that is the reality of any convention but especially here. Your schedules and priorities are going to have to shift here and there as things either sell out or fill up, don’t let that ruin your day and in turn ruin the experience for others.
SELF CARE: This should go without saying, but I know a lot of people forget about it every year. SDCC is one of the best times of the entire year, I know that – I spend just as much time camping out in lines, hitting up parties and events, and trying to soak in every SDCC moment that I possibly can. But we are humans and we can only do so much. Eat enough meals and bring yourself snacks! Please remember to stay hydrated, bring a reusable water bottle. There are plenty of water refill stations inside the convention center, plus with a reusable one you won’t have to stand in a line to buy a super expensive one AND the environment will thank you for using less plastic. Get enough sleep, I am guilty of being awake for over 24 hours at comic-con, and only getting 2-3 hours of sleep a night, but make sure you are at least getting some rest each night. Sunscreen! It is San Diego in the middle of summer, and while the weather reports right now look promising (mostly sunny and 75 degrees each day) that can change at any moment. You will be walking around outside, you will be in the sun outside – sometimes for hours at a time. Avoid any unnecessary discomfort that a sunburn would bring.
ONLINE EXCLUSIVES: Don’t forget that the exclusives portal will be closing soon! If you haven’t already logged into your Member ID account and selected the things you are interested in, don’t delay. This year is a little different in the fact that some of the big booths are handling their exclusives or autographs in an advanced online lottery. If you were hoping to score something from Funko, Hasbro, Lego, or UCC Distributing or perhaps win autograph session from WB, DC, or Fox – log into your Member ID account now and click on the “Exclusives Portal” tab!
Is this your first time coming to San Diego Comic Con? What are you most excited for this far? I’d love to hear your comments! Leave me a message below or find me on social media and let’s connect!
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