The Ultimate Survival Guide to Gaming Conventions

Hone your survival skills with this guide to preparing for convention season.

It's the most wonderful time of the year - Convention season! What better way to prepare than to equip a survival guide from a seasoned convention-goer. Take it from me—there’s a lot that can go wrong if you don’t plan accordingly. From lost phones to car problems, I've pretty much seen it all. So to help all of you fellow con-goers out, here's a handy little guide. Enjoy!

Pre-Convention Prep:

Don't forget your badge!

When packing for a long weekend of convention shenanigans, it's always good to have a checklist that you can refer to. Below is a list of typical items that are easy to forget, especially if you’re like me and wait until the last minute to pack. Always take a look at the weather forecast for the location you're traveling to so you can choose the appropriate clothing.

  • Wallet with license and credit/debit card
  • Convention pass
  • Travel size toothbrush, toothpaste, and  deodorant
  • Travel size body wash, shampoo, conditioner, face wash, and hair products
  • Underwear, socks, shirts, pants, and sleepwear
  • Fully charged Cell Phone, Camera, and Nintendo 3Ds
  • Cell Phone charger, Camera charger, and Nintendo 3Ds charger
  • Fully charged power pack
  • Protein bars and bottled water
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Small backpack

Traveling To Conventions:

Plan ahead to avoid unwanted surprises.

If you plan on traveling long distances by car make sure to get an oil change and routine inspection to ensure everything's running smoothly to avoid any surprises during your trip. Also, fill up on gas and grab cash for tolls.

For those of you traveling by air, it’s always good practice to check your designated airport and airline sites for their rules and regulations. This will prevent any unnecessary delays during bag check and TSA before your flight. Get to the airport at least 2 hours early so you don't risk missing your flight if the airport is crowded.

Depending on how much sleep you were able to get the night before, it might be wise to rest up during travel if you aren't driving. This way, you won't be tempted to use your devices.

If you're someone who's awake during travel, make sure to charge your devices if you use them so they aren't dead when you reach your destination.

Convention Safety Practices:

Travel in groups

Check in to your hotel as soon as possible so you have a safe place for all your things, and make sure you have Lyft or Uber apps installed in case you ever need to leave the Con in a pinch.

Formulate a plan to get the most out of your time there, and if you're attending a convention with friends, designate a meeting place you're all familiar with in case you get separated.

If you're attending a convention alone, make sure someone close to you knows where you're staying and what convention you're going to. Check in with them periodically so they know you're safe.

Carry a small backpack with your wallet, tech devices, chargers, protein bars, bottled water, and hand sanitizer. These will keep you energized and ready for anything that comes your way.

Lastly, make sure to take some time to rest, as it's extremely easy to get caught up in the high energy of a convention. Aside from that, takes lots of pictures, grab some souvenirs, and have a blast! Hopefully, this survival guide can be a great reference for you in all your future gaming conventions.

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